may not be cited except as provided by
Minn. Stat. § 480A.08, subd. 3 (1996).
STATE OF MINNESOTA
IN COURT OF APPEALS
Brent Florine, et al.,
Floyd Rodmyre, et al.,
City of Eagan,
Del H. Einess, et al.,
Filed January 7, 1997
Dakota County District Court
File No. CX9510466
Dale M. Wagner, Peter A. Koller, Moss & Barnett, 4800 Norwest Center, 90 S. Seventh St., Minneapolis, MN 55402-4129 (for Appellants)
Michael G. Dougherty, James F. Sheldon, Sharon K. Hills, Severson, Sheldon, Dougherty & Molenda, P.A., 7300 W. 147th St., Suite 600, Apple Valley, MN 55124 (for Respondent City of Eagan)
Winthrop A. Rockwell, Faegre & Benson, L.L.P., 90 S. Seventh St., Suite 2200, Minneapolis, MN 55402 (for Respondent Einess)
Considered and decided by Short, Presiding Judge, Randall, Judge, and Davies, Judge.
Appellants seek reversal of a summary judgment ruling that a three-story building does not violate city code height restrictions because it was authorized by council approval of a planned development district. We affirm.
(1) whether there are any genuine issues of material fact and (2) whether the lower courts erred in their application of the law.
State by Cooper v. French, 460 N.W.2d 2, 4 (Minn. 1990). The parties agree that there are no material issues of fact. Before us is the legal question of whether the district court correctly interpreted the Eagan ordinances governing planned development districts. A reviewing court must interpret a zoning ordinance "in light of its underlying policy." Frank's Nursery Sales, Inc. v. City of Roseville, 295 N.W.2d 604, 609 (Minn. 1980).
Appellants argue that because the three-story medical office building will exceed 20 feet and will be located less than 300 feet from a residential area, the interplay of various sections of the Eagan code prohibit Eagan from issuing a building permit.
Appellants' argument overlooks the nature of planned development districts, which are zoning districts in and of themselves. See Eagan, Minn., City Code § 11.20, subd. 1 (listing "planned development district" as one of 19 types of land use districts). The purpose of a planned development district is "to encourage, under appropriate circumstances, a more creative, varied and efficient use of land in the City." Eagan, Minn., City Code § 11.20, subd. 8(A). A planned development district accomplishes this by overriding other zoning. That override alone is conclusive in this case.
Further, by contending that the 20-foot height restriction applies to the planned development district, appellants ignore the plain language of Eagan, Minn., City Code § 11.20, subd. 15(A), which states that requirements for setbacks, building coverage, height, and floor area applicable to a subdivision must be met "unless otherwise approved under a Planned Development."
Also, appellants argue that Eagan must provide an underlying classification for every planned development district. They rely on Eagan, Minn., City Code § 11.20, subd. 8(A), which describes planned development districts as "deemed supplementary and superimposed over the basic zoning of the property under consideration." The words "supplementary" and "superimposed over" mislead appellant. In this context they mean "supersede," not "added to." The code clearly states:
Where a conflict may arise between the requirements of the supplementary and basic zoning, those requirements related to the supplementary zoning shall prevail.
Eagan, Minn., City Code § 11.20, subd. 8(A) (emphasis added). Thus, whether or not there is an underlying zoning classification, the planned development district limitations would prevail. Here, having or not having an underlying zoning classification is irrelevant.
The purpose and intent of planned development districts is to allow for the creative use of land in a manner different from what might be called "straight zoning." To burden planned development districts by carrying over other zoning restrictions would defeat this purpose.
[ ]1 The developers of the planned development district and two companies with stores within the development intervened as defendants and are also respondents on appeal.
[ ]2 Appellants also cite Amcon Corp. v. City of Eagan, 348 N.W.2d 66 (Minn. 1984) (directing city, in context of that case, to provide zoning to underlie planned development district).