Board of Supervisors Meeting Date:

Ollie Joe and Cathy L. Lawler    


April 8, 2010


Staff Lead:


Cynthia Porter-Johnson, Planner

Community Development


Magisterial District: 







A Resolution to Approve a Waiver for a Right-of-Way Less Than Fifty Feet in Width  (WAVR10-MA-021) – Marshall District


Topic Description:

Ollie Joe and Cathy L. Lawler, the owners/applicants, are seeking a waiver of Zoning Ordinance Section 7-302.1.A.3, Limitations, which would allow a subdivision on a private street less than fifty (50) feet in width. The property fronts on Lawlers Road, an existing twenty (20) foot wide ingress and egress easement that connects to Conde Road (Route 737). The applicants are proposing to divide a 65.0730-acre parcel into two lots, an administrative division of 9.7346 acres and a residue of 55.3384 acres. The residue will be devoid of additional development rights and subject to a non-common open space easement. In order to provide access to the new lot (administrative lot), the applicants are granting a twenty (20) foot wide easement that will connect to the existing twenty (20) foot ingress and egress easement (Lawlers Road). Because this easement is less than fifty feet in width, the applicants are requesting a reduction in the width of the right-of-way from the required fifty (50) feet to twenty (20) feet in width. The reason for the proposed division is to equitably distribute the property so that each owner will be able to retain a portion of the property as agreed to in the divorce settlement.


Attachment 2 is the applicants’ Statement of Justification. The proposed division showing access to the lots is included as Attachment 3.


The property is located on the east side of Free State Road (Route 721) and northwest of Conde Road (Route 737) in the Marshall District.  

Zoning/Land Use:

The subject property is zoned Rural Agricultural (RA) and Rural Conservation (RC), and currently has the subdivision potential to be divided into four (4) lots. Adjacent properties to the immediate north and east are zoned Rural Agriculture (RA) and Rural Conservation (RC). Adjacent properties to the immediate south and west are zoned Rural Agriculture (RA). There are currently two dwellings located on the property, which will be separated by the proposed division.




Staff Analysis:

Section 7-302.1.A.3 requires a minimum width of fifty (50) feet for a private street. However, the Board of Supervisors has the authority, in conjunction with a subdivision plan, to modify this limitation provided the applicants can show that:

1.  No other remedy is realistically feasible;

2.  Plausible alternatives have been exhausted;

3.  To not modify the applicable limitation would place an unreasonable restriction on the use of

      the property; and

4.  Properties through which access is planned will not be unreasonably affected.

The twenty (20) foot wide ingress and egress easement is adequate to provide vehicular access to the properties as no additional dwellings are proposed at this time, and the easement will serve existing traffic. Without the requested waiver, the applicants cannot proceed with the proposed division as the road frontage and access requirements cannot be met. Refer to the attached subdivision plat.

Staff would point out that the deed of non-common open space would prohibit widening of the ingress and egress easement in the future. In addition, this application is not approving the administrative division. Staff has repeatedly advised the applicants that the administrative division as shown on Attachment 3 will not allow any future division based on the sliding scale.

Planning Commission Action: 

On March 25, 2010, the Planning Commission unanimously recommended approval of the applicants’ waiver of Section 7-302.1.A.3 of the Zoning Ordinance.


Requested Action of the Board of Supervisors:
Consider adoption of the attached resolution.

Financial Impact Analysis:

Identify any other Departments, Organizations or Individuals that would be affected by this request:


1.  Not Used Due to Novus Agenda

2.  Statement of Justification

3.  Exhibit Plat

4.  Not Used Due to Novus Agenda

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