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Planning Commission's zoning change spares some carports
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McMinnville Planning Commission members decided to try to change city code rather than tell more than 40 property owners their carports are illegally placed and must be moved.
Planning Commission members have spent three months trying to figure out what to do about carports throughout the city that were placed since 2010 without permits and do not adhere to the city’s current code. The committee met Tuesday to continue deliberations.
“The decision was made to recommend to the full board a zoning change,” said Planning and Zoning supervisor Josh Baker. “If the board approves the changes, it will make at least half of the carports OK. Those placed without a permit will still have to get one, but they won’t be told to move their carports.”
Listed is the current code with recommended changes in parenthesis. The McMinnville Board of Mayor and Aldermen must approve any changes.
• R1 — Carports in the front yard must be 40 (15) feet from the road, carports in the side yard must be 15 (5) feet from the property line, and carports in the side corner of the yard must be 40 (15) feet from the property line.
• R2 — Carports in front yard must be 35 (10) feet from the road, side yard must be 10 (5) feet from the property line, and side corner must be 35 (10) feet from the property line.
• R3 — Carports in front yard must be 35 (10) feet from the road, side yard must be 10 (5) feet from the property line, and side corner must be 35 (10) feet from the property line.
• R4 — Carports in front yard must be 25 (10) feet from the road, side yard must be 10 (5) feet from the property line, and side corner must be 25 (five) feet from the property line.
• R5 —Carports in front yard must be 30 (10) feet from the road, side yard must be 15 (5) feet from the property line, and side corner must be 30 (five) feet from the property line.
City code currently does not put any distance restriction between carports and the property line if the carport is placed to the rear of the property. The recommended change will be five feet between the carport and the property line.
If board members accept the changes, the unlucky property owners whose carport still conflicts with city code will receive a letter stating their carport is in violation of city code and must be moved.
Baker says those property owners have the right to apply for a variance request before the Board of Zoning Appeals.
“If they can’t move it or feel there is some reason why it shouldn’t be moved, the property owner can apply for a variance,” Baker said. “It will be up members of the Board of Zoning Appeals to decide if the carport should stay or go.”
If board members reject the changes, the measure will go back to the McMinnville Planning Commission for further consideration.
Voting in favor of recommending the changes were McMinnville Planning Commission members Anthony Pelham, Amie Hodges, David Marttala, Jim Brock and Jimmy Bonner.