SHERIDAN — Sheridan City Council approved a Sheridan Railroad Historic District Master Plan at its meeting Monday to provide guidance for development and preservation in the Railroad Historic District that was created in 2004.
The plan, which has been the subject of discussion for several years, was added to the consent agenda and approved prior to a formal presentation about the plan.
“We realized when we wanted to develop the Sheridan Inn that you couldn’t develop it in a vacuum,” said Edre Maier, who is acting as a liaison for area property owners, businesses and the Sheridan Artists’ Guild, Et al. “Say Target built behind you, and you had a gas station on the south side. How about the historic integrity? Who wants to stay in that history?”
The Railroad Historic District consists of two sections. One is bordered by Main, Sixth, Crook, Broadway and First streets and includes both railroad depots, and the other is bordered by Broadway, Grinnell and Dow.
“It really became important to develop a historic railroad district, which we did in 2004, and then the next step is to develop a master plan, which gives suggested guidelines on how we continue to preserve the area and make it economically viable as well as preserving the character,” Maier said.
The Railroad Historic District Master Plan is not restrictive, Maier said. It offers suggestions for restoration and future development that will preserve the integrity of the district.
“It’s education. It tells you where to go for more information. It gives you guidelines. It tells you where to find funding. It’s just a plan,” Maier said.
The plan is also a way to show granting organizations, such as the Wyoming Business Council, that the city is invested in the district, which is one of the first things organizations look at when considering giving a grant, Entech Consulting Engineers representative Dave Engels said.
Key recommendations of the plan include improving infrastructure in the district, using zoning and building codes to encourage historic preservation, promoting relocation of the railroad tracks, promoting and educating about the district, providing a financial plan for the district, supporting partnerships with government entities and nonprofit organizations and more.
In other business:
• City Council adopted changes and language amendments to a revised flood plain ordinance and then approved on second reading Ordinance 2140, which revised rules and regulations regarding flood plain management. The new rules and regulations — as well as new Flood Insurance Rate Maps — are required in order for the city to maintain eligibility in the National Flood Insurance program.
• City Council approved on second reading a rezone of 16,880 square feet on Val Vista Street from R-3 residential to B-1 business. The rezone is located at 706 Val Vista Street and south of the alley between West Third and Fourth streets.