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Bloomington, MN, City Council Passes Ordinance to Restrict Self-Storage Development

The Bloomington, Minnesota, City Council voted on May 24 to restrict future self-storage development. The new ordinance prohibits new facilities from being built on parcels that carry a “protected industrial” designation in the municipality’s Comprehensive Plan and limits projects in several other areas:

  • Within a half-mile of existing or planned light-rail or bus rapid-transit stations that provide access to high-density residential or employment opportunities
  • On parcels within the city’s Lyndale Avenue Retrofit Study area
  • Within 500 feet of properties zoned or used for residential purposes

Passed against a recommendation from the planning commission, the ordinance essentially limits new self-storage to four areas, city planner Shawn James told the source. It also ends and replaces a one-year moratorium on self-storage construction that was enacted by the city council last June due to increased interest from developers, according to the source.

Officials looked negatively at low employment activity related to self-storage as well as height and lighting impact from multi-story facilities, James said. “While self-storage is in demand, current regulations allow facilities in some areas that don’t align with the vision and goals of city plans and are impactful to their surroundings,” a city staff report stated.

The number of self-storage properties within Bloomington has doubled in four years. Of the existing nine, only two would meet the new requirements. The other seven will be grandfathered as legal, nonconforming facilities, James said.

The ordinance also requires city-council approval for any conditional-use permits. The planning commission previously had authority to grant such permits, the source reported.

Sun Current, Bloomington Approves Restrictions on Self-Storage Facilities

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