Town of Gilbert considering changing zoning laws

GILBERT, AZ - Town of Gilbert officials are considering a change that some say will bring new life to downtown and others say will ruin it.

The town planning commission is currently looking at adding an arts, culture, and entertainment district to the Downtown Heritage district. It's a zoning change that would allow businesses to serve alcohol closer to schools and churches.

Jamie Johnson is a waitress and manager at the Farmhouse Restaurant. She's lived and worked in Gilbert for the last 12 years and likes the idea of adding an entertainment district because it could bring new nightlife options to downtown.

"Gilbert needs some place to go and we've been looking for something fun to do in Gilbert for a long time," said Johnson.

Not everyone is in favor of the idea though. Rita Greenwell just moved to the Gilbert. She likes the Heritage district as it is and is worried that making a change could ruin the town's historic and family oriented appeal.

"I don't know that that's such a good idea. What's cool about this little strip is that it is quaint and old," said Greenwell.

Gilbert officials will be hosting an open house informational meeting on June 17th so people can find out more about the proposed district. The meeting is scheduled for 5 p.m. at the Gilbert Community Center.

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