05-0330R

AS AMENDED

RESOLUTION REVERSING A DECISION OF THE BOARD OF ZONING APPEALS TO DENY A REQUEST TO REDUCE THE REQUIRED FRONTAGE FROM 50 FEET TO 40 FEET AND REDUCE THE MINIMUM OUTSIDE WIDTH OF A DWELLING FROM 20 FEET TO 18 FEET FOR THE CONSTRUCTION OF THREE SINGLE-FAMILY DWELLINGS ON PROPERTY LOCATED AT 2606, 2610 AND 2614 WEST SECOND STREET.

BY COUNCILOR GILBERT:

     WHEREAS, Duane Caywood and the Northern Communities Land Trust own property located at 2606, 2610 and 2614 West Second Street, legally described as westerly 40 feet of Lot 420, all of Lot 422 and the east 30 feet of Lot 424, Block 79, Duluth Proper Second Division; and

     WHEREAS, Northern Communities Land Trust, by Jeff Corey, executive director, has appealed the board of zoning appeals denial of a variance request to reduce the required frontage from 50 feet to 40 feet and reduce the minimum outside width of a dwelling from 20 feet to 18 feet for the construction of three single-family dwellings on property located at 2606, 2610 and 2614 West Second Street; and

     WHEREAS, Chapter 50-20.2 requires 50 feet minimum frontage for a single family dwelling in an R-3 zoning district and Section 50-1.20 defines a one-family dwelling as having a minimum outside width of 20 feet measured at its narrowest point; and

     WHEREAS, the board of zoning appeals denied the variance request because it found that no hardship to the property existed which constituted special circumstances or conditions applying to the land in question which was peculiar to such property and did not apply generally to other land or buildings in the vicinity, and because it was not necessary for the preservation and enjoyment of a substantial property right and not merely a convenience of the applicant; and

     WHEREAS, the board of zoning appeals determined that an 11-unit apartment building could legally be constructed on the property without the need for a variance and that there was no basis in the zoning code for reducing the minimum lot frontage requirement except under an approved Traditional Neighborhood District; and

     WHEREAS, the granting of this variance was not justified under the existing verbiage of the Zoning Code; and

     WHEREAS, pursuant to Section 50-47 of the Duluth City Code, 1959, as amended, in order to grant this appeal and issue the requested variance, the city council would be required to find that by reason of exceptional narrowness, shallowness or shape of the property, or by reason of exceptional topographic conditions or other extraordinary and exceptional situation or condition of the property, the strict application of the terms of Chapter 50 would result in peculiar and exceptional practical difficulties to or exceptional or undue hardship upon the owner of such property and that such relief may be granted without substantial detriment to the public good and without substantially impairing the intent of the zoning plan and the zoning Code; in addition the council must find that special circumstances or conditions applying to the building or land in question which are peculiar to such property or immediately adjoining property, and do not apply generally to other land or buildings in the vicinity, that the granting of the application is necessary for the preservation and enjoyment of a substantial property right and not merely to serve as a convenience to the applicant, and that authorizing of the variance will not impair an adequate supply of light and air to adjacent property or unreasonably increase the congestion in public streets or increase the danger of fire or imperil the public safety or unreasonably diminish or impair established property values within the surrounding areas or in any other respect impair the health, safety, comfort, morals or general welfare of the inhabitants of the city.

     NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the city council finds that, by reason of the October 24, 1925, lot of record code and historic and existing uses, strict application of the Zoning Code to this property would result in lack of uniformity, of density, of development with negative neighborhood impact to the owner, that relief therefrom may be granted without substantial detriment to the public good and without substantially impairing the intent of the zoning plan and the Zoning Code, that special circumstances or conditions applying to the building or land in question which are peculiar to such property or immediately adjoining property, and do not apply generally to other land or buildings in the vicinity and that granting of the application is necessary for the preservation and enjoyment of a substantial property right, the right of prudent allowable construction of single family dwellings and not merely to serve as a convenience to the applicant and that authorizing of the variance will not impair an adequate supply of light and air to adjacent property or unreasonably increase the congestion in public streets or increase the danger of fire or imperil the public safety or unreasonably diminish or impair established property values within the surrounding areas or in any other respect impair the health, safety, comfort, morals or general welfare of the inhabitants of the city.

     FURTHER RESOLVED, that the board of zoning appeals’ decision of April 26, 2005, is hereby reversed by the city council and the appeal is granted.


STATEMENT OF PURPOSE:   This resolution reverses the decision of the board of zoning appeals to deny a request to reduce the required frontage from 50 feet to 40 feet and to reduce the minimum outside width of a dwelling from 20 feet to 18 feet for the construction of three single-family dwellings on property located at 2606, 2610, and 2614 West Second Street. The council disagreed with the board’s findings and found that a physical characteristic peculiar to the property prevented the owner from exercising a substantial property right, and that granting a variance would not result in negative impacts on the surrounding neighborhood. The council determined that granting a variance would not violate the requirements of the Zoning Code.

 

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