BY COUNCILOR GILBERT:
BE IT RESOLVED, the city council has heard the appeal of Dennis Jensen of the decision of the board of zoning appeals denying applicants’ variance request and that the city council finds that, by reason of (condition of land), strict application of the zoning code to this property would result in (practical difficulty or undue hardship) 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 a “place” as required by the code (a public street, a public open space, a public passage that connects to a street at each end) exists at ___________________________ and a front yard of at least ________________________ feet frontage on it is acceptable, that granting of the application is necessary for the preservation and enjoyment of a substantial property right, the right of __________________ 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.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, by the city of Duluth that the board of zoning appeals’ decision of January 24, 2006, is hereby reversed by the city council and the variance request is granted.
STATEMENT OF PURPOSE: Dennis Jensen applied to the board of zoning appeals for a variance to reduce the minimum street frontage requirement in a suburban district from 250 feet to zero feet for the construction of a single family dwelling on vacant land with access easement off Swan Lake Road and legally described as N1/2 of SW1/4 of SW1/4 of SE1/4 of Section 7, Township 50, Range 14.
The board of zoning appeals denied the variance to reduce the minimum street frontage because it determined that the owner could reconfigure the property in a conforming manner. Thus, they concluded 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 that did not apply generally to other land in the vicinity, and because it was not necessary for the preservation and enjoyment of a substantial property right and was merely a convenience of the applicant. The applicant has appealed to the Duluth City Council. The code requires that this lot have 250 feet frontage on a street, public open space, or passageway that connects two streets. A private driveway or easement will not comply. The applicant did not show such frontage to the board of zoning appeals, but may be able to do so to the council, which is the way the land could qualify as buildable.
This resolution reverses the decision of the board of zoning appeals to deny a request to reduce the minimum street frontage from 250 feet to zero feet for the construction of a single family dwelling on vacant land with access easement off Swan Lake Rd. and legally described as N1/2 of SW1/4 of SW1/4 of SE1/4 of Section 7, Township 50, Range 14.
If the city council approves this resolution it is required to state the factual basis for its finding in the blank spaces provided in the body of the resolution. Such factual findings are required by the district court in order to avoid a determination that the decision was arbitrary and capricious.
Pursuant to Minn Stat. § 15.99, the city council must act no later than May 6, 2006, which is 120 days from the date of application.
APPLICATION DATE: January 6, 2006
FINAL ACTION DATE: May 6, 2006