Real Estate: Trustees Prioritize Changes to Land Use Code and Procedures

Real Estate: Trustees Prioritize Changes to Land Use Code and Procedures

fmroad2Village Trustees are taking steps to re-examine aspects of local zoning code in an effort to reduce the number of teardowns and the bulk of new homes. At a meeting of the Land Use Committee on June 12, trustees discussed a wide array of measures that arose after discussion with the Village land use boards in November, 2017.

Deputy Village Manager Robert Cole outlined the measures under consideration, some of which are procedural, and others that would involve a change to Village Code.

For instance, members of the Board of Architectural review asked if they could review landscaping plans at an early enough stage to influence decisions about tree preservation, screening and other landscaping elements. Trustees discussed how this could be accomplished as part of the BAR submission process.

Also on the list of items to be examined are changes to the Floor Area Ratio code, (which details the amount of allowable square feet for a home based on the size of the lot) as well as FAR bonuses and setback requirements with the goal of limiting the size of newly constructed homes. For instance, the current code has a provision that allows second story space built over a garage to be exempt from the floor area ratio calculation. If this bonus were eliminated, it would cut down on the permissible size of new homes.

Under consideration is the requirement for a special use permit for homes of over 15,000 to be constructed.

Trustees will review the provision that requires that any bonus square footage for additions to existing family homes to be added in the rear of the structure as it was suggested that this encourages teardowns.

A suggestion to reduce the size of the side-yard setback bonus or to implement a 5% reduction in all of the FAR code could also impact the size of new homes.

Looking at demolitions, the Village Board recently changed the Historic Preservation code to define the term “Master.” They also changed the criteria for preservation that formerly said, “That the building is the work of a master; and
That the building embodies the distinctive characteristics of a type, period or method of construction that possess high artistic value;

By changing the word AND to OR they provided more opportunities for preservation. They are also appointing an architect from outside the community to serve on the committee.

Trustees may engage a consultant to model some of these changes, to examine what happens in different scenarios and to determine whether or not the change will address the concerns people have about bulky houses.

You can read more about the changes under consideration here:


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