May 8 2018
11:21 am

The Aubreys request has been pulled by the City from MPC and is now on the BZA agenda. Is this an effort to circumvent the South Waterfront zoning?

Mike Cohen's picture


I represent Randy Burleson and Aubreys. We are not circumventing anything. The City decided this was a more appropriate way to deal with the proposal.

What we are seeking can be seen on the BZA agenda and will be discussed and considered publicly. Here is a link: (link...)

We had at least 7 community and business meetings. The plans and proposal have not changed. All that has changed is the way the City felt was best to deal with the proposal. If you attended any of our meetings, you have seen what we propose.

The BZA meeting is May 17th at 4 p.m. in the Small Assembly Room and is open to the public both to observe and comment.

All the feedback so far has been very positive.

If you have some aspect you want to discuss, feel free to e-mail me at mike@cohencommunicationsgroup.com or call at 865-659-4750.

Rachel's picture

So this proposal is no longer

So this proposal is no longer seeking alternative compliance? Can you explain why?

Mike Cohen's picture



I hate passing the buck, but I can't give a detailed answer to that other than this: the City changed it's mind about how best to deal with it. I know that Dawn Michelle Foster has done a lot of South Knox outreach to let people know it changed because of the city...not because of the proposal. The proposal hasn't really changed, just the process the city chose to use for it.

Mike Cohen's picture

One more thing...

As part of outreach on the proposal we met with folks from the South Knoxville Waterfront Neighborhood Association, Vestal Community organization, Old Sevier NA, Island Home NA, South Haven NA, Woodhaven NA, South Knox Business Alliance, Legacy Parks and the Aslan Foundation. Nothing has changed in what we are proposing from what we told all those organizations. And the support has been very, very strong. I personally trust the City has a good and valid reason for changing this.

Rachel's picture

Hmm. I'm just curious. Will

Hmm. I'm just curious. Will check into this. Is the BZA agenda online yet? Want to see how many and what variances are being requsted.

Mike Cohen's picture


Saw you found it. I had the BZA link in my first post. Nothing under the radar here, just a change on the government approach.

Rachel's picture

Reading too fast and missed

Reading too fast and missed that. Saw it much later.

Appreciate the response about what is happening.

Rachel's picture



Rachel's picture

Here's the text from the BZA

Here's the text from the BZA agenda. I think the first item is misworded - they're not asking to reduce the setback , they're increasing it (e.g. code says zero setback; they are asking for 40').

File: 5-I-18-VA Parcel ID: 109AK012
Applicant: Aubrey’s Inc, Randy Burleson 1st Council District
Address: 2226 Chapman Hwy
Zoning: FD-SW-6 (Henley Gateway)
Variance Requests:
1. Reduce the required front yard setback from 0 ft to 40 ft per Article 4, Section 4.1.3.G.4.
2. Reduce the minimum required building frontage at setback from 50% to 0% per Article 4, Section 4.1.3.G.4.
3. Reduce the minimum required building height from 40 ft and 3-story to 20 ft 6 inches and 1-story per Article 4, Section 4.1.3.G.4.
4. Reduce the minimum transparent glass at the ground level on the principal frontage from 70% to 12.6% per Article 4, Section 4.1.3.G.6.
5. Increase the maximum parking from 3 spaces per 1,000 sf (23 spaces) to 7 spaces per 1,000 sf (52 spaces) per Article 4, Section 4.1.3.G.7.b.
As per plan submitted proposing to construct a new restaurant in the FD-SW-6 District.

michael kaplan's picture

Aubrey's suburban restaurants

Aubrey's suburban restaurants - like most suburban restaurants - are usually surrounded by parking. It would be great if Aubrey's could be accommodated within the Kern Bakery building(s), but I realize that's not Aubrey's model.

Mike Cohen's picture

Actually the plan is that the

Actually the plan is that the parking would serve Aubrey's but also supply spaces for both Kerns and the planned trailhead and historical site atop the hill behind it. We're coordinating that with both Legacy Parks (the trials) and the Aslan Foundation (the historic site). Most of it will serve primarily Aubrey's, but it is more than that.

R. Neal's picture

SoKno Aubrey’s gets green

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