Fort Worth council votes to allow alcohol sales next to schools, hospitals in four areas

Posted Wednesday, Jun. 05, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

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Businesses that want to sell alcoholic beverages near schools and public hospitals in mixed-use zoning in downtown, Trinity Uptown, the Near South Side, and the West 7th Urban Village can now do so under an ordinance change approved by the City Council Tuesday night.

The change eliminates the 300-foot buffer between schools and businesses that sell alcohol in the four mixed-use-zoned areas.

Alcohol sales would be allowed within 300 feet of public and private schools and public hospitals in mixed-use zoning in those areas. Elsewhere in the city, businesses wanting to sell alcohol within that buffer in mixed-use zoning have to seek a variance from the City Council.

The council had asked the staff for the ordinance change because it has typically granted variances in recent cases. The impending move of Fort Worth’s Young Women’s Leadership Academy to mixed-use zoning downtown from the same sort of area on West Magnolia Avenue was a new situation that prompted the review.

A public school is defined as one going up through college, and a private school — according to the Texas alcoholic beverage code — is defined as kindergarten through 12th grade.

The affected Fort Worth school district campuses are Trimble Tech High School, 1003 W. Cannon Ave.; Van Zandt-Guinn Elementary School, 501 Missouri Ave.; and the Young Women’s Leadership Academy, a new location on 401 E. Eighth St. downtown and the old location on West Magnolia.

The affected private schools are Cassata Learning Center, 1400 Hemphill St., and Montessori at Sundance Square, 201 Jones St.

The affected colleges include the University of Texas at Arlington Fort Worth Center on Jones Street downtown; Tarrant County College downtown; and the University of North Texas Health Science Center on the west side.

Scott Nishimura, 817-390-7808 Twitter: @JScottNishimura

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