Zoning protects the rights of property owners while promoting the general welfare of the community. By dividing land into categories according to use, and setting regulations for these categories, a zoning ordinance can govern private land use and segregate incompatible uses. The purpose of zoning is to locate particular land uses where they are most appropriate, considering public utilities, road access, and the established development pattern. In addition to categorizing land by uses such as residential, commercial, and industrial, a zoning ordinance also specifies such details as building setback lines, the height and bulk of buildings, the size and location of open spaces, and the intensity to which the land may be developed.
Generally, rezonings are justifiable under one of the following three circumstances:
- When the requested rezoning is consistent with long range land use plans adopted by the appropriate governing body
- When there was an error or oversight in the original zoning of the property
- When changes have occurred to conditions in the vicinity of the property which prevent the reasonable use of the property as currently zoned
–from “The Rezoning Process,” Knoxville-Knox County Planning (knoxmpc.org)
Keep the Urban Wilderness Peaceful asserts that none of these conditions exists. The requested rezoning is not consistent with the South County Sector Plan, which is derived from the long range Growth Plan adopted by Knox County. There have been no errors or oversights in the original zoning of the parcels in question. No changes have occurred in the area preventing the property’s use as currently zoned.