Board Approves Iowa Campground Expansion

August 27, 2013 by   - () Comments Off on Board Approves Iowa Campground Expansion

Campers enjoy their riverside campsite at the Chimney Rock Campground near Cresco, Iowa.

Editor’s Note: The governmental formalities some campground owners need to comply with just to make small adjustments to their properties are evident in this story from the The Decorah Newspapers in Decorah, Iowa.

Chimney Rock Campground near Cresco has received the green light to make some improvements.

At Monday’s (Aug. 26) meeting of the Winneshiek County Board of Supervisors, the board unanimously voted to approve a conditional-use permit for expansion of the campground and to operation of a medium-service campground. The decision follows a unanimous recommendation by the Winneshiek County Planning and Zoning Commission to approve the permit.

The conditional-use permit includes:

  • Construction of five new electric pedestals, three new electric pedestals to comply with medium-service campground regulations.
  • Addition of a screen and fence on the waste disposal site.
  • Renovation of the existing recreation room and shower house to add four pay showers and four toilets. The registration area and camp store will be moved to this location.

In the future, owner Deb Keefe plans to add 10 additional electric pedestals, water to the electric sites and tee-pees.

According to Winneshiek County Planning and Zoning Administrator Tony Phillips, the original application included the construction of three 16-foot by 16-foot cabins and up to three more cabins; however, this request will be dealt with as part her upcoming rezoning request.

In May, the Winneshiek County Planning and Zoning Commission recommended the supervisors deny a request to rezone the entire campground from A-1 agricultural to C-1 highway commercial following a public hearing where a variety of Keefe’s neighbors expressed concerns about the rezoning and the additional traffic, noise and garbage which could result from it.

Keefe then withdrew her original application to the Board of Supervisors.

Public hearing

In a related matter, the Board set a public hearing on the rezoning request from Keefe and Chimney Rock Campground for Sept. 3.

Keefe has revised her rezoning request and is asking to rezone specific areas occupied by her rental cabins from A-1 agricultural to C-1 commercial.

Phillips explained some of the cabins already exist and some will be constructed in the future.

He said since Winneshiek County’s establishment of zoning in 1994, Keefe’s campground has existed as a “legal, nonconforming use” of A-1 agricultural, which does not allow for expansion in size, scope or structure without rezoning.

Rezoning of the property under the cabins to C-1 is necessary for her to stay in compliance with county zoning codes.



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