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Council approves zoning for logistics center in NW Reno

By Carla O'Day

The Reno City Council on Wednesday approved a zoning map amendment to accommodate a 444,500 square-foot warehouse in northwest Reno that would operate 24 hours.

Approximately 26 acres, mostly located north of Interstate 80 south of Boomtown-Garson Road and west of Cabela Drive, will be designated mixed-use suburban under a new ordinance. Most of the land had been zoned “hotel casino,” although a small part was “arterial commercial.”

The Planning Commission, an advisory board to the City Council, denied conditional use permits for the warehouse in June but agreed to approve the zone change.

Ken Krater, representing Dermody Properties, appealed to the Council. During Wednesday’s meeting, Krater said the logistics center fits into the city’s master plan. Master plans set trajectory for future growth.

From 2013 until almost a year ago, the site was being eyed as a 24-hour truck stop. However, the truck stop entitlement on the site expired in December 2020. City officials said a logistics center is an allowed use in areas designated mixed use suburban in the Mortensen-Garson Overlay District.

“The mixed use suburban zone district with enhanced design and compatibility standards also allows for broader range of allowed land uses, including a potential for warehouse distribution,” said Nathan Gilbert, city associate planner. “Residential capacity of the MGOD Planning Area 2 is already reached. We heard several public comments, ‘Why not housing?’ We can’t do housing in Planning Area 2. It’s full.”

The location of the proposed Logisticenter in west Reno, adjacent to homes in the area.
The location of the proposed Logisticenter in west Reno, adjacent to homes in the area. Image: Reno City Council presentation.

Councilwoman Jenny Brekhus was the lone dissenter. She said allowing a warehouse on the site would deny area residents a commercial center, which could include businesses such as grocery stores. Also, she said the proximity to neighborhoods could mean diesel fumes at the warehouse affecting those who live nearby.

“I advocated, when we redesigned the zoning code, to narrow our zoning districts and have one special to these logistics centers because they’re so impactful, and we took a pass on that,” Brekhus told fellow council members. “Under the current transportation conditions that those operate, they are absolutely, definitely not appropriate adjacent to residential and I would urge you all to find new subdivisions being built next to logistics center in any western state around.”

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