Departing planning commissioner reflects on serviceA Woodbury Planning Commission member who worked on revamping the city’s zoning ordinance over the last year is stepping down.
By: Riham Feshir, Woodbury Bulletin
A Woodbury Planning Commission member who worked on revamping the city’s zoning ordinance over the last year is stepping down.
Mark Schulz, whose term expires at the end of next year, will be moving out of Woodbury to shorten his family’s commute to work.
“We’re sad to be leaving,” he said. “We know the city is going to be doing very well in the future.”
Schulz has been on the Planning Commission for almost two years bringing his law background to the table.
His experience allowed him to give input when it came time to discuss city ordinances and policies, he said.
One of the biggest projects the city’s planning department and commissioners worked on over the last year was updating the zoning ordinance to include Phase 2.
A whole new zoning map was created to accommodate the growth, Schulz said.
Urban Village, a mixed use development near the Bielenberg Sports Center and part of Phase 2, was the focus of the changes.
Schulz said the zoning map will include a combination of commercial, different building ideas and residential housing.
“There usually isn’t that many changes to zoning that occurs,” he said. “They usually don’t change a brand-new zone all that often.”
Schulz said he decided to join the Planning Commission to fulfill his civic duties and get involved.
He plans to use what he learned in Woodbury and apply it to the new community of Lakeville where he’s moving in mid-November.
Schulz did experience some challenges though, he said, while serving on the Planning Commission.
“The volume of information that you potentially can come across,” he said, adding that sifting through the zoning ordinance in particular was a “huge project.”
But with a variety of professionals as co-advisory commissioners, he said there was an overall understanding of the different concepts and plans.
Each person on the Planning Commission brings something different based on their own backgrounds and work experience.
“Everybody on the commission kind of has their niches that they can dive into,” he said.
The Woodbury Planning Commission has two other open positions that will need to be filled at the beginning of next year.
Planning Commission Chairwoman Nancy Remakel’s term expires in December along with Commissioner Jim Edberg’s term.
Schulz said he informed the council of his departure so it could fill his spot while conducting interviews for the open positions in October and November.
His advice for the next person to take his place is: Be ready.
“The city is going to continue to expand through the great planning process that it does,” he said, adding, “Just be prepared to be busy.”