The City Council voted 5-3 Tuesday night to rezone to C-2 property on the north side of Dave Ward Drive between Donaghey Avenue and Elizabeth Avenue at the request of Kum & Go convenience stores.

After months of discussions with neighbors that included appearances before the Planning Commission, the rezoning was approved with 11 conditions.

Voting for the rezoning were Aldermen Andy Hawkins, David Grimes, Mark Vaught, Shelley Mehl and Mary Smith. Voting no were Aldermen Theo Jones, Jim Rhodes and Sheila Whitmore.

The Council also approved a conditional use permit to allow gasoline pumps at the convenience store. That vote was 7-1 with Whitmore voting no.

After hearing residents speak of traffic concerns on Elizabeth and Hillman streets, the Council imposed the conditions of no parking on those streets and the addition of traffic-calming devices, such as speed bumps, as needed.

Among other conditions imposed were operation times at 24 hours a day, seven days a week; the prohibition of an outdoor sound system; an 8-foot high privacy fence on the north property line; and brick construction of "UCA blend from Acme Brick." Hours of construction will be limited to 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., and enhanced landscaping will be guaranteed for three years.

In other business, the Council granted a parks impact fee credit to developers of the Watershed, a 17.38-acre natural preserve at The Village at Hendrix (TVH) in exchange for an easement for pedestrian and bicycle access.

The Watershed is a natural area with streams, walking paths, boardwalks, trails, bridges, benches and seating areas for public recreational purposes.

Because the Watershed is defined as a Park System Improvement, the developers, TVH, will be eligible for a $400,000 credit, offsetting impact-generating development in the neighborhood. The developers will be responsible for $700,000 in impact fees for streets.

In other business, the Council approved a document outlining rules for operation of the parks, but removed a stipulation that no guns be allowed in parks, citing existing state statutes that cover those regulations. During the discussion, Alderman Vaught asked for a show of hands of those in the audience who have concealed weapon permits, and about 60 people raised their hands.

The Council also

• Voted to repeal a 1971 ordinance that prohibited firearms in the city’s parks.

• Voted 8-0 to rezone property at 1605 E. Oak from R-1 and C-3 to PUD for a metal recycling facility. The request from Linda Linn included limiting hours of operation. The PUD was recommended for approval by the Planning Commission on July 16.

• Accepted a five-year vending contract with Pepsi Beverages Co. for the city’s park concessions. Pepsi will pay $15,000 up front and $5,000 for four years, provide 10 recycle bins and 50 cases of 16.9 oz. water each year.

• Approved the renewal of a contract with Aramark for the outsourcing of concession services at City of Colleges Park and Conway Station Park.

• Approved an agreement for design services with Jacobs for a master plan at Curtis Walker Park at a cost of $9,130, and an agreement for architectural services with Sowell Architects for a concession stand and toilet facility at Conway Station Park at a cost of $7,500.

(Staff writer Becky Harris can be reached at becky.harris@thecabin.net and 505-1234.)