PUBLIC HEARING AGENDA REQUEST

Owner/Applicant:                                              Planning Commission Meeting Date:

Craig and Nina Anderson                                             April 21, 2003

Staff Lead:                                                                 Department:

Robert C. Counts                                                         Community Development

Magisterial District:  Scott                                        PIN(s):

Service District: New Baltimore    7915-26-0533-000; 7915-26-1743-000;and                                                                                                  7915-26-3740-000

Topic:                                                                                                                                     

A Resolution to Approve SE03-S-25: A Category 29 Special Exception - Waiver of the Public Street Requirement for the Sweetwater Subdivision, Craig and Nina Anderson, Owners and Applicant

Topic Description:

The applicant first created the Sweetwater Subdivision by an Administrative Division that produced two building lots (now referred to as Lots 5 and 6), and a residue. The residue was subsequently subdivided to create four additional building lots (Lots 1-4), thus completing the Subdivision. The division of the residue parcel carried with it the requirement to construct a public street and cul-de-sac to serve Lots 2, 3, and 4.  Attachment 1 presents the currently configured Sweetwater Subdivision and the required public street.

Although agreed to by the applicants during the subdivision process, the actual construction of the required public street will impose a significant aesthetic impact on the neighborhood and will not benefit any of the adjacent property owners. In order to minimize changes to the character of the community, the applicant has taken the following steps to eliminate the need for the required public street:

  1. Adjustment of lot lines between Lots 2 and 3 to increase the amount of frontage Lot 2 has on Wintergreen Court , an existing public street.
  2. Adjustment of lot line between Lots 4 and 5 to eliminate Lot 4 by incorporating that lot’s acreage into Lots 3 and 5. Lot 5 is an Administrative Division already legally served by a private road.

As a result of these lot line changes, Lot 2 will have the required minimum frontage (135 feet) on Wintergreen Court and will not require access via the currently required cul-de-sac. Lot 4 will be removed from the subdivision.  Attachment 2, the Special Exception Plat, shows the proposed reconfiguration of the subdivision without the public street.

The effect of these changes is to leave only Lot 3 being accessed by the required public street and cul-de-sac. The applicants are seeking a Special Exception to waive the requirement to build the public street. As justification, the applicants contend that VDOT will not accept the required cul-de-sac for maintenance, even if built to public standards, because it will only serve one residence.

The applicants further contend that the proposed private street alternative will adequately serve as access to Lot 3 and as the entranceway to the existing 50-foot easement and private road that already serves Lots 5 and 6 (Attachment 3).

Land Area, Location and Zoning:                                                    

The property affected by this Special Exception consists of three residential lots totaling slightly more than four acres. The properties are located at the end of Wintergreen Court (Route 1323) at its intersection with Route 1324. The properties are zoned R-1.

Neighboring Zoning/Land Use:

The site is surrounded by residential properties also in the R-1 zoning district.

Action Requested of the Board of Supervisors:

Conduct a public hearing and consider the attached resolution.

Staff Analysis:

Staff and appropriate referral agencies have reviewed this request for conformance with the Comprehensive Plan, the Zoning Ordinance, and other relevant policies and regulations. Staff and referral agency findings, comments, and recommendations are summarized below.

Requirements of the Zoning Ordinance

Article 5, PART 29 of the Fauquier County Zoning Ordinance provides standards for waiving the requirement to provide public streets to serve lots within a subdivision. One of these standards requires the finding that the proposed private streets, based upon anticipated traffic generation volume, would adequately serve the lots to be developed and provide sufficient emergency vehicle access to the subdivision, and that adequate provisions will be made to provide for continuing maintenance and repair of the streets by a homeowners association.

Additional Zoning-Related Comments

The Zoning Office has reviewed this application and provided the following comments:

1.                  In accordance with Section 7-306, the plat of any subdivision containing a private street(s) shall have boldly printed thereon and be included as a covenant in each deed for a lot in the subdivision the following statement:

THE PRIVATE STREET IN THIS SUBDIVISION WILL NOT BE PAVED OR MAINTAINED WITH FUNDS OF FAUQUIER COUNTY OR FUNDS ADMINISTERED BY THE VIRGINIA DEPARTMENT OF HIGHWAYS AND TRANSPORTATION.  IN THE EVENT THAT OWNERS OF LOTS IN THE SUBDIVISION SUBSEQUENTLY DESIRE THE ADDITION OF SUCH PRIVATE STREETS TO THE SECONDARY SYSTEM OF STATE HIGHWAYS FOR MAINTENANCE, THE COST TO UPGRADE IT TO THE PRESCRIBED STANDARDS MUST BE PROVIDED FROM FUNDS OTHER THAN THOSE ADMINISTERED BY THE VIRGINIA DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION OF FAUQUIER COUNTY.  PRIVATE STREETS IN THIS SUBDIVISION ARE NOT DEDICATED FOR PUBLIC USE.

             

2.                  In accordance with Section 7-305 of the Fauquier County Zoning Ordinance, the applicant must identify on the plan and record an Ingress and Egress Easement for public emergency and maintenance vehicles.  Such easements shall be recorded with the instruments, which create the private streets.

There are no known violations on the property.     

Engineering Considerations

The Engineering Division has reviewed this application and has provided the following single comment:

·        The Revised Lots 3 and 5 should be restricted from further subdivision unless a public street is built to provide frontage as required by Section 2-405 of the Zoning Ordinance.

Summary and Planning Commission Recommendation:

At the time of the property’s second subdivision (i.e., following the Administrative Division process) three of the four proposed lots lacked the required frontage on a public street. To meet this requirement, the developer (and current applicant) was required to build a public street and cul-de-sac to provide access to Lots 2, 3, and 4. With the action proposed by the applicants, Lot 2 will be adjusted to provide adequate frontage on an existing public street, and Lot 4 will be eliminated from the Subdivision. Through this action, the applicants will make a significant change to the circumstances that required a public street and cul-de-sac. The applicants contend that with only one lot to serve, the currently required cul-de-sac would not be accepted for VDOT maintenance even if built to state standards. The applicants further contend that adding a single residential drive to a private entrance already adequately serving the two Administrative lots (Lots 5 and 6) will not result in any change in the current level of service.

Staff has visited this site on several occasions and has observed that construction of a public street would not significantly benefit any of the affected property owners or the surrounding community. In fact, the clearing required to construct the required street would have a significant negative visual impact on the area. The Scott District Planning Commissioner has also visited the site and concurs with staff findings.

The Planning Commission conducted a public hearing on this application on March 27, 2003 and received no testimony in opposition to the request. Therefore, based on a review of the facts, visual inspection, and discussions with a number of adjacent property owners, the Planning Commission has concluded that the required public street is neither necessary nor desirable to serve this Subdivision. Accordingly, the Planning Commission voted to recommend to the Board of Supervisors approval of SE03-S-25 subject to the following conditions:

  1. The Boundary Line Adjustment plats resulting from the reconfigured Lots 3 and 4 shall have boldly printed thereon and be included as a covenant in each deed for a lot in the subdivision the following statement:

THE PRIVATE STREET IN THIS SUBDIVISION WILL NOT BE PAVED OR MAINTAINED WITH FUNDS OF FAUQUIER COUNTY OR FUNDS ADMINISTERED BY THE VIRGINIA DEPARTMENT OF HIGHWAYS AND TRANSPORTATION.  IN THE EVENT THAT OWNERS OF LOTS IN THE SUBDIVISION SUBSEQUENTLY DESIRE THE ADDITION OF SUCH PRIVATE STREETS TO THE SECONDARY SYSTEM OF STATE HIGHWAYS FOR MAINTENANCE, THE COST TO UPGRADE IT TO THE PRESCRIBED STANDARDS MUST BE PROVIDED FROM FUNDS OTHER THAN THOSE ADMINISTERED BY THE VIRGINIA DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION OF FAUQUIER COUNTY.  PRIVATE STREETS IN THIS SUBDIVISION ARE NOT DEDICATED FOR PUBLIC USE.

  1. In accordance with Section 7-305 of the Fauquier County Zoning Ordinance, the applicant must identify on the plat and record an Ingress and Egress Easement for public emergency and maintenance vehicles.  Such easements shall be recorded with the instruments, which create the private streets.
  2. Pursuant to Subdivision Ordinance Section 7-12, provisions for private street sign maintenance shall be included in the homeowner’s/property owner’s association documents or street maintenance agreement documents. In addition, the Boundary Line Adjustment plats shall include a statement that street signs for the private street will not be maintained with the funds from the County of Fauquier .
  3. Neither revised Lot 3 nor 5 shall be further subdivided unless a public street is built to provide frontage as required by Section 2-405 of the Zoning Ordinance.

A resolution of approval is included for the Board’s consideration.

Attachments:

1.      Current Sweetwater Subdivision Layout

2.      Special Exception Plat-Reconfigured Sweetwater Subdivision

      3.   Approval Resolution