BY JENNIFER BAILEY firstname.lastname@example.org
---- — DANVILLE – A downtown area tattoo studio received initial approval Thursday night from the Danville Area Planning and Zoning Commission.
The Danville City Council will act on the special-use permit on April 15.
Commission members recommended approving a special-use permit requested by Chris Pratt to operate a tattoo studio at 116 N. Walnut St. in the B4 Central Business Zoning District. The tattoo studio would be operated by Chris’ brother, Jason, by appointment only.
Chris Pratt is the owner of Bonnie & Clyde’s Antiques at that location.
Chris Pratt said his brother has 20-plus years of experience of being a tattoo artist working in various other shops and his own shop. The room in the back of the building for the private tattoo studio is about 12-feet-by-18-feet, Chris added.
Chris said one tattoo appointment could last two to four hours.
Chris Milliken, the city's planning and urban services manager, said the city didn’t receive any comments about the studio and the city department also has no objections.
This location, and by having it appointment only, seems to fit in better in the downtown area than a previous zoning request for a tattoo studio on Vermilion Street years ago, Milliken said.
Also at Thursday’s meeting, the commission heard an update on development projects.
Milliken said Kelly’s Sign Shop, 1004 N. Vermilion St., should be open any day now after renovations. The sign shop received zoning approval in 2010.
Steel Grip also is expected to move the week of Easter to its new Voorhees Street location.
Milliken also reported that GT Rentals LLC (Greg Tissier, an accountant) received an occupancy permit and will be renting out more office spaces on East Liberty Lane.
In other business, the commission also discussed regulations for locations/placement of clothing donation collection bins. There are about 11 bins located on various properties in the city. They are mainly Chicago-based business owned and the clothing and items don’t stay in the community, Milliken said.
The commission agreed the problems stem from when the bins overflow with items and become an eyesore.
Ward 7 Alderman Bill Black, who brought up the issue to city officials, said he has seen them overflowing and receives the most complaints about the bins near Kmart, the BP gas station at Vermilion and Fairchild street and near the Dixie Pit Stop at Vermilion and Williams streets.
People drop off car seats, mattresses and other junk at the bins, he said. He said the city’s public works department has cleaned up some of the sites multiple times.
Black said there are other locations that people can drop off clothing and other items locally, such as Y’s Buys Thrift Shop, 208 N. Jackson St., which helps the local women’s shelter.
Black said there were two or three bins years ago in the city and now there are around 12.
His concern is having one on every corner.
Commission members supported the city sending a letter to property owners to have them monitor and maintain the bins so they don’t overflow and become eyesores; have the bins meet setback requirements from roadways; and indicate that the city has enforcement abilities through its property maintenance code about property owners taking care of trash on their properties.
The companies currently don’t need a city permit for placement of the bins. Only property owner permission is needed.
Milliken said some Chicago suburbs have outlawed the bins completely, while a lot of communities address them in some fashion by limiting the number and/or placement of them.