The proposal can bring more handmade goods to the city of Shawnee

SHAWNEE, Kan. – The city of Shawnee may soon create a new land use category to allow for more handmade goods to be sold in the city.

On Monday night, the planning commission unanimously approved the proposal to add artisanal manufacturing to the Townsquare district and the Commercial Highway Overlay of the city.

The Townsquare district includes commercial and mixed-use areas. The district covers most of downtown Shawnee between Bluejacket Street and King Avenue from Shawnee Mission Parkway to 57th Street.

Townsquare district map

City staff refer to the Commercial Highway Overlay district as the eastern gateway to Shawnee. The district is located along Shawnee Mission Parkway between Flint Street and the eastern city limits.

The proposed artisanal land use will allow for on-site production of handcrafted products including food, alcohol and art. Common uses may include businesses such as breweries, cabinet shops, ceramic or jewelry studios.

For businesses to qualify in the new category, products must be made on-site and sold in stores in the same location. The storefront must be at least 150 square feet and located on the ground floor of the building. Up to 2,500 square feet of business property can be dedicated to product manufacturing.

Downtown Shawnee is home to several breweries and other artisanal manufacturing type businesses. According to city documents, no business has a manufacturing space larger than the proposed 2,500-square-foot limit.

Deputy Director of Community Development Lauren Grashoff said the proposed changes would also limit car-centric businesses in the city.

Under the proposed amendment, auto parts stores and gas stations will not be allowed in the Townsquare district. Convenience stores will also not be allowed inside the district if their business includes gas pumps.

Auto parts stores, gas stations and convenience stores will still be allowed in the Commercial Highway Overlay district. Grashoff said the two counties currently have no businesses that would be denied under the proposed amendment.

If the amendment is approved for both districts, existing restaurants or new businesses looking to offer a drive-thru option will be required to obtain a special use permit (SUP) from the city.

The city council is scheduled to review the proposed amendment for the new land use category on Monday, September 12. If approved by the city council, the amendment will go into effect on September 20.

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