Polk ZBA approves permit for equine hospital

Published 2:54 pm Thursday, April 4, 2013


Hospital proposed off Landrum Road

A proposed equine hospital received approval last week following the Polk County Zoning Board of Adjustment approving a conditional use permit.

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The zoning board of adjustment met to hear evidence on March 19 and approved the permit last week. Bill Hay, representing BIAN LLC applied for a conditional use permit for an equine veterinary hospital on property near Landrum Road in the Green Creek Township. The property is located in the county’s Multiple Use (MU) zoning district and comprises of 10.01 acres.

The zoning board approved the permit by a 4-1 vote, with members Betty Hill, Michael Axelrod, Frank Monterisi and chair Paul Weidman voting in favor and member Preston White voting against.

The board heard testimony during a quasi-judicial hearing from Hay as well as two nearby residents who testified against the proposed equine hospital.

Hay currently owns an equine veterinary hospital in Columbus and is proposing to construct the new hospital to expand capacity and capability of the existing veterinary operation. The new hospital is proposed to include a hospital building for diagnostics, treatment and surgery; a stabling barn; two equestrian rings for riding and evaluation; exercise and turnout paddocks and a hay storage area and parking.

All structures are proposed to be located on the north half of the property on its higher elevations and vehicle access is proposed to be through an existing right of way extending from Landrum Road to the property.

Hay testified that he intends for the facility to be a good neighbor. He told the zoning board that he is maintaining green space between the facility’s structures and adjacent properties, including trees as a buffer. Hay also said the driveway would be oriented to face away from the other residence. The neighborhood around the property includes a number of equestrian uses, including an equine rehabilitation center, Hay said. Because of the surrounding uses, Hay told the zoning board he believes his equine veterinary hospital will increase neighborhood property values in general, although he acknowledged that the adjacent property owner might believe differently.

Adjacent property owner Elaine Martin testified against the permit saying the buildings would be visible from her backyard pool and detract from its current view.