TOWER- A request from Daniel Eveleth to build a home smaller than allowed by the city’s current zoning ordinance was denied for failing to meet the standards set in statute for the granting of …
TOWER- A request from Daniel Eveleth to build a home smaller than allowed by the city’s current zoning ordinance was denied for failing to meet the standards set in statute for the granting of a variance. Under state law, variances from the established zoning rules can only be granted if the request meets a three-factor test, including reasonableness, the physical uniqueness of the property (such as topography, not the preferences of the landowner or the economic costs), and that the change will not affect the essential character of the surrounding neighborhood or the city’s comprehensive plan.
The lot in question, on the 700 block of N. Second St. is zoned Residential-3, where current zoning regulations require any residential structure to be a minimum of 20 ft. by 20 ft. in size.
Eveleth said his plans called for two walls that are over 20’ in length, but two that are shorter than 20’, though a side deck would bring that width to 20’. The house would sit on a poured concrete footing with wood skirting. Eveleth said his lot is low and subject to flooding, and the cost to fill the lot to create a larger space for a house was “extremely high.”
Eveleth noted that his plan would meet all required setbacks, and that the size of the home was not that different from others in the area. The lot also includes a garage.
“I plan to make this property a nice residence,” he wrote in his application, “and to become a long-term taxpayer and user of services in Tower. I am not just a vacationer here.”
But economic factors, good or bad, are not factored into the legal reasons to grant a variance.
According to information put out by the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry, tiny homes range from 100 to 400 sq. ft., excluding any lofts.
City clerk-treasurer Michael Schultz said the issue of tiny homes is something the Planning and Zoning Commission will consider as part of a review the city’s ordinance and that adjustments to permit homes of this size in the future could be made.
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Shaking my head.
Friday, September 15 Report this