CITY OF TEXARKANA, AR

REQUEST FOR BOARD ACTION

 

AGENDA TITLE: Adopt an Ordinance amending the Code of Ordinances of the City of Texarkana, Arkansas, regarding the lot of record definition.  (PWD-Planning) (SECOND READING) City Planner Mary Beck

 

AGENDA DATE:  10/15/2018 (First Reading October 1, 2018)

ITEM#:  9

DEPARTMENT:  Planning Division – Public Works Department

 

DATE SUBMITTED: 09/13/2018

 

PREPARED BY:  Mary Beck, City Planner

 

SUBJECT:  An ordinance to amend the zoning chapter lot of record definition.   

 

EXHIBITS: Ordinance, Planner’s memo, and atlas maps of some of the impacted subdivisions.

APPROVAL:

 

http://arkagenda.txkusa.org/2018/08062018/08062018_html/item_9_08062018_pw_sanderson_lane_road_improvements_bid_award_files/image001.png

 

EXPENSE REQUIRED $0.00

 

AMOUNT BUDGETED: $0.00

 

APPROPRIATION REQUIRED:  $0.00

 

SUMMARY: Following a request by Mayor Penny Bell to review Tiny Houses, the Planning Commission held four months of workshops and a public hearing.  Although recommendations on Tiny Houses will wait until adoption of the new International Building code, the Planning Commission discovered a need to amend the zoning chapter regarding existing lots that are smaller than current requirements. The current lot width exceeds the width of lots in at least ninety-nine (99) older subdivisions in Wards 1, 2, 3 and 4.  This ordinance will restore older, recorded subdivisions lots in residential zones to legal building sites for single family housing.  The adoption of the 1988 Long-term comprehensive plan set lot widths based on projections for a housing market that has changed since then.  The trend towards smaller more affordable housing will be aided by allowing development on these existing lots without a need for review, research and/or re-platting into larger lots. The regular Planning Commission meeting held a public hearing September 11 then voted on a motion by Dr. Randall Hickerson, seconded by Mr. Jason Dupree, with a 4-0 roll call vote with one vacancy and two absent to certify approval of the attached ordinance to amend the zoning code lot of record definition. 

BOARD ACTION: The City Manager and staff recommend board approval.

EMERGENCY CLAUSE:  None needed

 

 

 

 

CITY OF TEXARKANA, ARKANSAS

DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS

216 WALNUT STREET 71854-6024

P.O. BOX 2711 – TEXARKANA, ARKANSAS 75504-2711

PHONE (870) 779-4971 – FAX (870) 773-2395

MEMORANDUM

TO:                       Dr. Kenny Haskin, City Manager

FROM:                            Mary L. Beck, City Planner

DATE:                   September 12, 2018

SUBJECT:             Board of Directors Agenda Item for 10-01-2018 meeting – Request by Dr. Kenny Haskins to amend the City zoning code regarding lots of record.  

REASON FOR REQUEST:

 

 

An original request by Mayor Penny-Bell to review Tiny Houses lead to the Planning Commission consulting with Public Works staff and agreeing to wait for adoption of the newest International Building Code before making recommendations for Tiny Houses.  However, research related to Tiny Houses brought an awareness that weed-lots and vacant lots are more likely to be small lots subdivided prior to the 1988 Long-term Comprehensive Plan that do not meet current code for width. There are at least ninety-nine subdivisions located in residential zones in older parts of the City, chiefly in Wards one, two, three and four that could benefit from easier development of single-family housing with an added possibility of reducing the number of vacant weed-lots as these lots will be more valuable as valid building sites.               

 

COMPATIBILITY WITH EXISTING DEVELOPMENT:

 

 

Single family housing previously constructed on lots smaller than current regulations is typical for the inner part of the City.  New small or Tiny Houses would not conflict with existing housing stock and would allow more affordable land costs to acquire and develop these properties as they are currently undervalued due to regulatory conflicts in size.       

 

 CONFORMANCE WITH APPLICABLE ORDINANCES AND/OR STATE STATUTES:

 

            The Planning Commission has held discussions and workshops at regular meetings since June 2018 and held a public hearing on September 11, 2018 to discuss lots of record becoming inclusive of lots that existed before the Long-term comprehensive plan as valid building sites in residential zones for single family housing using the lot of record formula for setbacks.     

 

 

The Arkansas Code of 1987 Annotated (14-56-422 1B) requires the following - “All plans, recommended ordinances, and regulations shall be adopted through the following procedure for adoption of plans and regulations:

 

(1)                  (A) The Planning Commission shall hold a public hearing on the plans, ordinances, and regulations proposed under this subchapter.

(2)                  (B) Notice of public hearing shall be published newspaper of general circulation in the city, at least one (1) time fifteen (15) days prior to the hearing.

 

(3)            Following the public hearing, proposed plans may be adopted, and proposed ordinances and regulations may be recommended as presented, or in modified form, by a majority vote of the entire commission.

 

(4)            Following its adoption of plans and recommendation of ordinances and regulations, the commission shall certify adopted plans or recommended ordinances and regulations to the legislative body of the city for its adoption.

 

(5)            The legislative body of the city may return the plans and recommended ordinances and regulations to the commission for further study or rectification, or, by a majority vote of the entire membership, may, by ordinance or resolution, adopt the plans and recommended ordinances or regulations submitted by the commission.  However, nothing in this subchapter shall be construed to limit the city board’s authority to recall the ordinances and resolutions by a vote of a majority of the council.

 

(6)            Following adoption by the legislative body, the adopted plans, ordinances, and regulations shall be filed in the office of the City Clerk.  The City Clerk shall file, with the county recorder of the counties in which territorial jurisdiction is being exercised such plans, ordinances, and regulations as pertain to the territory.

 

PUBLIC HEARING NOTICE:  Published in Texarkana Gazette, Sunday, August 26, 2018:    

 

OPPOSITION:

No opposition has been received. 

                                    

PLANNING COMMISSION RECOMMENDATION:

 

 

The Planning Commission met on September 11, 2018, to consider recommendation of an ordinance to allow all lots of recorded subdivisions in residential zones to be valid building sites for single family housing as lots of record as defined by this ordinance. On a motion by Dr. Randall Hickerson, seconded by Mr. Jason Dupree the Planning Commission certifies a recommendation for approval by a roll call vote of 4-0    

 

 

 

 

Bertha Dunn, Chairperson

Adger Smith, Vice-Chairperson

George Coker                                       

Absent

Yes

Absent

 

 

Randall Hickerson

Yes

 

 

Boots Thomas

Jason Dupree

Vacancy

Yes
Yes

-

 






 

BOARD ACTION REQUESTED:

 

 

The Board action requested is as follows:

 

  1. On October 1, 2018, consider adopting an ordinance amending the municipal code zoning chapter regarding the lot of record definition.

 

  1. An emergency clause is not requested

 

 

ORDINANCE NO. _________

 

AN ORDINANCE TO AMEND THE CODE OF ORDINANCES OF THE CITY OF TEXARKANA, ARKANSAS, CHAPTER 28, ARTICLE I, SEC. 28-5, LOT OF RECORD, IN ORDER TO RESTORE TO LEGAL STATUS AS BUILDING SITES FOR SINGLE FAMILY HOUSING, LOTS IN SUBDIVISIONS FILED PRIOR TO ADOPTION OF THE 1988 LONG-TERM COMPREHENSIVE PLAN

 

WHEREAS, Wards numbered one, two, three, and four collectively have ninety-eight or more older subdivisions filed prior to the current lot size requirements set by adoption of the City’s Long-Term Comprehensive Plan of 1988; and

WHEREAS, the current trend towards smaller houses is contrary to the previous trend towards larger houses in 1988 that indicated a need for larger lots; and

WHEREAS, construction of single-family housing on smaller lots is compatible with existing residences built in older subdivisions and would not greatly impact density; and

WHEREAS, the City desires to promote development of land suitable for construction of single-family housing by making such lots more valuable and less likely to be abandoned or to become or remain weed lots;

NOW THEREFORE, BE IT ORDAINED by the Board of Directors of the City of Texarkana, Arkansas, that for the reasons set forth above and in order to make lots that were platted in subdivisions prior to adoption of the 1988 Long-term Comprehensive Plan valid building sites for single family housing when found in residential zones, the existing Section 28-5 of the Code of Ordinances of the City of Texarkana, Arkansas, is deleted in its entirety and the following is substituted therefore:

Sec. 28-5. - Lot of record.

A lot of record in any zoning district is defined as:  1) A lot shown on a recorded subdivision plat filed before August 15, 1988; or, 2) a parcel of vacant land that was under separate ownership and on a plat of record at the time of adoption of this zoning ordinance, where no adjoining land fronting on the same street was under the same ownership on the said date and has continued unchanged in size from that date.  A lot of record may be used as a building site even though such lot or parcel fails to meet the minimum requirements for lot area, lot width, or both, that are generally applicable to lots in the zoning district.  However, any said lot of record located within any residential zoning district within the city limits may only be used for purposes of constructing a single-family detached residential dwelling unit.  On any such lot or parcel, the side yard requirements of this chapter shall be complied with if said requirements do not reduce the net buildable worth of the lot below thirty-five (35) feet. If the side yard requirements would reduce the net buildable width of the lot below thirty-five (35) feet, then the side yard requirements shall be reduced so that (a) any interior side yard requirement shall not exceed ten (10) per cent of the width of the lot, or five (5) feet, whichever is greater and (b) any exterior side yard requirement shall not exceed twenty (20) per cent of the width of the lot or five (5) feet, whichever is greater.  On any such lot or parcel, the front and rear yard requirements or building setbacks shall not reduce the net buildable depth of the lot below fifty (50) feet.  If the front and rear yard requirements would reduce the net buildable depth below fifty (50) feet, then front and rear yard requirements shall be reduced so that (a) any front yard requirement shall not exceed twenty-five (25) per cent of the depth of the lot, and (b) any rear yard requirement shall not exceed twenty (20) per cent of the depth of the lot, or twenty (20) feet, whichever is greater.                                                                                                                      

PASSED AND APPROVED this 15th day of October, 2018.

 

                                                                       __________________________

                                                                        Ruth Penney Bell, Mayor

 

 

ATTEST:

 

__________________________

Heather Soyars, City Clerk

 

APPROVED:

 

__________________________

George M. Matteson, City Attorney