WHEREAS, an application for a variance from Marick Development as received on December 20, 2005; and

     WHEREAS, said application sought an approval for a variances of 15 feet on the north side, 42 feet on the west side and 20 feet on the south side from the ordinary high watermark to construct a duplex at 3129 Minnesota Avenue, in the city of Duluth; and

     WHEREAS, the property in question is subject to setback requirements of 50 feet from ordinary high watermark pursuant to Duluth City Code Section 51-29(e); and

     WHEREAS, pursuant to Duluth City Code Section 51-10(c), the planning commission may grant a variance only in accordance with the standards set forth in articles II, III and IV for each respective district and shall not compromise the purposes of Chapter 51; and

     WHEREAS, Duluth City Code Section 51-30 provides authority to grant a variance only upon a showing of hardship; and

     WHEREAS, Duluth City Code Section 51-1 sets forth the purposes of Chapter 51 as follows:

           The purpose of this chapter is to promote, preserve and enhance the water resources and environment within the city and protect them from adverse effects caused by poorly sited or incompatible development by regulating developments that would have an adverse or potentially irreversible impact on unique and fragile land, by minimizing conflicts and encouraging compatibility between environmentally sensitive lands, and by requiring detailed review standards and procedures for developments proposed for such areas, thereby achieving a balance between urban growth and development and protection of natural areas; and

     WHEREAS, Pursuant to Duluth City Code Section 51-2 the term “hardship” is defined as follows:

           Hardship. The property in question cannot be put to reasonable use under the conditions allowed by the regulations set forth in this chapter; the plight of the landowner is due to circumstances unique to his property, not created by the landowner. Economic considerations alone shall not constitute a hardship; and

     WHEREAS, this matter was considered during a public hearing by the planning commission on January 10, 2006; and

     WHEREAS, the commission considered the information contained within Planning File No. 06004 and also received additional information during the course of the public hearings; and

     WHEREAS, the commission voted 10 to 1 to deny the request;

     NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the city council of the city of Duluth, affirms the denial of the planning commissions application for variances upon the following grounds and reasons:

     (a)  The project compromises the purposes of the code and the applicant has failed to demonstrate the existence of a hardship. The commission concluded that the proposed duplex would be out of character with the surrounding development pattern. A previous variance for a front yard setback has been approved for the proposed duplex and the approval of additional variances for the property are not in character with the neighborhood and the natural resources of the city. The commission found the applicant can achieve a reasonable use of the property through a reduced setbacks with the construction of a smaller building. The need for the variances are due to the design choices of the applicant which are motivated by economics rather than conditions existing upon the land.

STATEMENT OF PURPOSE:  This resolution affirms the decision of the planning commission to deny a permit for a reduced setbacks for 3129 Minnesota Avenue (FN 06004). Proposed structure is too large in relationship to the size of the lot, the waterline, and the neighborhood thus a variance would alter the character of the neighborhood. The property can be used in a reasonable manner with a variance that is not as excessive as being proposed.

APPLICATION DATE: December 20, 2005         FINAL ACTION DATE: April 21, 2006