When owners Justin and Natasha McColl move Veritatis Splendor to property they are developing near Mentock Park, their new office will look similar to a ranch-style home with a partial basement and garage.

At the same time it will have some business characteristics such as a parking lot and business sign.

Recent city planning and zoning board approval granted the couple permission to obtain a building permit for the McColls’ new counseling center at the corner of Cougar and 23rd. They had already removed an abandoned two-story house from the lot.

The McColls must meet certain conditions to operate a business in their chosen location. 

Over objection by some neighbors and with support from others, city officials in March approved changing the building site zone from high-density residential to limited business on condition the McColls enter a development agreement. 

The agreement limits property to professional office and residential uses. It ensures the outside of the new office at 2221 Cougar is limited to 4,000-square-feet and one-story. The McColl’s agree to 7 a.m.-6 p.m. weekdays hours with the exception of one evening meeting per week with up to 10 clients.

The proposal meets restrictions of the development agreement, Utana Dye, city engineering technician, said at the June 11 P&Z meeting.

Plans for landscaping, typical for a residential property, include trees and flowing shrubs in a rock bed along the street frontage. An area north of the building will be grass.

Due to an overhead power line along Cougar, the city will not allow trees along that street. Instead the McColls are asked to consider tall shrubs, evergreens, bushes or small decorative deciduous trees.

Although Veritatis will have the look of a typical ranch-style house, its business use requires some features not typical for residences such as meeting disability standards, a storm water plan with proper grading, snow storage area and the need for a landscape buffer and fence for neighbor privacy.

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