Board of Supervisors held a public hearing on the proposed Zoning
Ordinance text amendment on August 19, 2002.
At the conclusion of the public hearing, the Board of
Supervisors postponed action until the next regular meeting.
Zoning Ordinance text amendment would increase the required front
yard setback requirements for certain properties within service
districts and within rural zoning districts.
Properties zoned residential and lying within service
districts boundaries would have the required front yard increased
to 150 feet, measured from the centerline of the road or pair of
lanes, if they have frontage along roads classified as arterials
and freeways in the Comprehensive Plan or on Route 215. This also
would be true for parcels in rural zoning districts that front on
current minimum front yard requirements vary with the particular
zoning district and the Comprehensive Planís classification of
the particular road. The
Residential-2, Residential-3, Residential-4 and Village Zoning
Districts now require a minimum 80-foot required front yard for
parcels fronting on a major thoroughfare.
The minimum front yard for the Residential-1 Zoning
District is 90 feet fronting a major thoroughfare, while the Rural
Zoning Districts require a 105-foot setback requirement. The
required front yard is measured from the centerline of a road (or
the centerline of the nearer set of lanes in the case a road has
more than two lanes).
affected arterials and freeways would be Routes 17, 28, 29, 50,
211 and 245 for parcels lying within the designated service
districts or in a Rural Zoning District.
Staff recommends Route 215 also be included along with the
arterials and freeways due to the continued commercial and
residential redevelopment of Vint Hill and future traffic
considerations associated with the construction of the Brookside
increased distance would provide insulation for new dwelling units
from the roads for traffic noise or future road-widening projects,
and will create an increased safety buffer in the case of a
large-scale accident. Properties
zoned as commercial, industrial and village would not be affected
by the text amendment.
its February 28, 2002 meeting, the Planning Commission voted to
initiate a text amendment following a Virginia Department of
Transportation request to change the measurement of the required
front yard from the centerline of the road to the property line.
On March 28, 2002, the Planning Commission held a public
hearing on the original VDOT proposal and voted to table the
matter for 60 days for additional study.
Community Development staff then requested an additional 30
days to discuss several options after County legal staff pointed
out several issues. The
current refined version is more restrictive than the original
proposal, so the July 25, 2002 public hearing became necessary.
examined the original VDOT proposal and found simply changing the
measurement point from the centerline of the street to the
property line would create several problems.
If additional adjustments were not made to the required
front yard distances, a large number of non-conforming lots and
buildings would be created, making routine additions or new
construction difficult or impossible without receiving a variance
from the Fauquier County Board of Zoning Appeals. Designating the
property line as the measurement point could also make certain
lots unbuildable, even in recently approved subdivisions, because
those lots were designed using the current required front yard
in the refined form, the proposed text amendment will create
nonconformities on some parcels of record along the specified
construction or renovations on those parcels may require variance
approval by the Board of Zoning Appeals before work can proceed.
legal staff also pointed out issues presented by dedicated
rights-of-way and proscriptive easements if the measurement point
was changed to the property line.
Some proscriptive easements run through interior portions
of parcels, so measurement from the property line could mean the
building restriction line might fall within the roadbed or within
a few feet of the travel way.
staff members cited the Lake Whippoorwill subdivision near the
intersection of Routes 605 and 15-29 to support their request. The later phases of that subdivision are accessed via
interior streets, but some of the lots also back up to the
right-of-way bordering the northbound lanes of Routes 15-29.
The Zoning Ordinance treats these lots as having a double
front yard because they have frontage on two roads (the internal
street and Routes 15-29). For
structures in the Residential-1 Zoning District, the current
required setback from a major thoroughfare such as Route 29 is 90
feet from the nearer set of lanes. VDOT personnel pointed out a major thoroughfare may have a
right-of-way of 110 to 160 feet, so a structure may be 90 feet
from the centerline of the road (in an R-1 Zoning District) and be
located just outside of the right-of-way boundary.
current amendment will provide a buffer between the traffic
traveling Fauquier Countyís major roads and new residences and
their accessory structures. The
Commercial, Industrial and Village Zoning Districts would not be
affected by this proposal.
ordinance of approval is included as Attachment 1.