Erica LaCroix, the new town manager for Winslow, met with the Town Council Thursday. Michael G. Seamans/Morning Sentinel file

WINSLOW — After weeks of debate and conversation about rezoning properties off Lee and Marie streets in Winslow, the council is closer to finding a solution.

At a special Winslow Town Council meeting Thursday night, councilors voted down a proposed ordinance to change the lots from high density residential to mixed-use zone. A new proposal for a contract zone was delayed and will be up for a vote at the regularly scheduled council meeting at 7 p.m. Monday, Nov. 9.

“The difference is, a contract zone allows us to limit the use of the area to a specific purpose, in this case, warehousing,” Town Manager Erica LaCroix said in an interview.

There will be a public hearing on the contract zone at the Nov. 9 meeting, LaCroix said.

Already the subject of public comment and much discussion at the September and October meetings as well as a workshop, the council went into Thursday night’s meeting with the sole focus of working out the situation.

The town council initially approved the ordinance to change the land from high-residential to mixed-use twice, but after a workshop with neighbors, the question was brought back before the council at the Oct. 13 meeting. The council then decided to table the ordinance, which would have rezoned lots on Lee and Marie streets.

Steve Martin, owner of S B Martin Excavations, wanted to build a garage to hold equipment for his business on the land owned by Chuck Lambert.

A mixed-use zone allows a variety of businesses by anyone. A contract zone is specific to the property owner and the use proposed for that zone. The specific use proposed in the next ordinance narrows the use possibilities down.

At Thursday’s meeting, the council voted 5-2 to eliminate the prior ordinance, with at-large councilor Jeffrey West and District 1 councilor Patricia Ayer voting against the elimination.

The new ordinance regarding the contract zone was tabled to the Nov. 9 meeting because there was not enough time to complete required notices before the special meeting.

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