PUBLIC HEARING AGENDA REQUEST

Sponsor:

 Board of Supervisors Meeting Date:

 

Planning Commission

 

October 14, 2004

Staff Lead:

Department:

 

Frederick P.D. Carr, Director

 

Community Development

Topic:

 

Zoning Ordinance and Subdivision Ordinance Text Amendments Regarding Large lot Subdivisions

 

Topic Description:

 

There are several refinements regarding the large lot subdivision category, which covers the division of property into lots 50 acres or greater in size. Those proposed revisions are summarized in staff report section.

Requested Action of the Board of Supervisors:

 

Hold a public hearing and consider adoption of the attached ordinance.

Financial Impact Analysis:

None

 

Summary Staff Report:

 

Large Lot Development Option in the RA and RC Zones. 

 

Existing Conditions.  In Rural Agriculture (RA) and Rural Conservation (RC), property owners have had the option to do either large lot divisions or to subdivide their affected parcels in accordance with the sliding scale zoning provisions established within the Zoning Ordinance.  In 2002, the Board of Supervisors further refined the large lot division requirements for RA and RC districts through a Zoning Ordinance text amendment. The existing Zoning Ordinance Section 2-310 now states:

 

2-310              Large Lot Development Option in the RA and RC Zones

 

As an alternative to division in accordance with the sliding scale zoning density set forth in Section 2-308, any parcel zoned RA or RC which was of record as of May 21, 1981, and which is 100 acres or larger may be divided into lots of no less than 50 acres.  Such lots shall be exempt from the requirements of the Subdivision Ordinance as provided by Section 2-39(3)(C) of the Subdivision Ordinance.  No lot of less than 100 acres created in accordance with this alternative shall be further subdivided.  Lots in excess of 100 acres may be divided either in accordance with this Section or in accordance with the sliding scale zoning density set forth in Section 2-308.

 

Option 1 (Planning Commission Text Amendment).  Concern has been raised that the County is receiving an excessive number of 50-acre subdivision applications.  In order to reduce the number of 50-acre divisions and to preserve larger farms and forestal tracts, it has been suggested that this section be enhanced as follows:

 

2-310         Large Lot Development Option in the RA and RC Zones

 

As an alternative to division in accordance with the sliding scale zoning density set forth in Section 2-308, any parcel zoned RA or RC which was of record as of May 21, 1981, and which is 100 250 acres or larger may be divided into no more than 3 lots of no less than 50 acres in size, and all subsequent lots shall be at least 100 acres in size.  Such lots shall be exempt from the requirements of the Subdivision Ordinance as provided by Section 2-39(3)(C) of the Subdivision Ordinance.  No lot of less than 100 acres or less in size and created in accordance with this alternative shall be further subdivided; nor shall any subsequent lot division(s) from residual acreage be less than 100 acres in size Lots in excess of 100 acres may be divided either in accordance with this Section or in accordance with the sliding scale zoning density set forth in Section 2-308.  However, a parcel of record as of May 21, 1981 may have one division, either family or administrative, of less than five (5) acres.  The administrative or family division shall not impact the ability to subsequently use this alternative.

 

The Subdivision Ordinance also describes expectations that mirror the Zoning Ordinance standards.  Here the Subdivision Ordinance Section 2-39, Subdivision, part (3)(C) states:

 

The division of a lot, tract or parcel of land into two or more parcels all of which are fifty (50) or greater for the purpose of transfer of ownership or building development provided:

 

1)      the lots/layout conform to requirements of this Ordinance and other County Ordinances;

2)      all lots are served by a right-of-way at least thirty (30) feet in width;

3)      the design standards of Article 7-303.1 of the Zoning Ordinance are met, except that the right-of-way width may be reduced as provided above;

4)      the homeowners association is established with covenants which provide for the maintenance and upkeep of the private street;

5)      the highway entrance is approved by the Virginia Department of Transportation;

6)      all platting requirements of Chapter 10 of this Ordinance are met; and

7)      No parcel of less than 100 acres which has been created using this exemption shall be redivided. A notation to this effect shall be contained on the plat and/or in the deed.  Parcels of 100 acres or greater created in accordance with this provision may be redivided either (i) into parcels of no less than 50 acres pursuant to this exemption or (ii) in accordance with the proportionate share methodology outlined in Section 2-308(2) of the Fauquier County Zoning Ordinance (Amended by the Board of Supervisors February 22, 2000).

 

As a “housecleaning refinement” to the referenced section of the Subdivision Ordinance due to the Zoning Ordinance text amendment, staff also proposes the refinements marked and identified below:

 

1.      the lots/layout conform to requirements of this Ordinance and other County Ordinances;

2.      all lots are served by a right-of-way at least thirty (30) feet in width;

3.      the design standards of Article 7-303.1 of the Zoning Ordinance are met, except that the right-of-way width may be reduced as provided above.

4.      the homeowners association is established with covenants which provide for the maintenance and upkeep of the private street.

5.      the highway entrance is approved by the Virginia Department of Transportation; and

6.      all platting requirements of Chapter 10 of this Ordinance are met; and

7.      no parcel of less than 100 acres which has been created using this exemption shall be redivided, pursuant to the provisions of Section 2-310 of the Zoning Ordinance. A notation to this effect shall be contained on the plat and/or in the deed.  Once the 50 acre lot minimum division total has been reached, any residual parcel must be 100 acres or more in size.  Parcels greater than 100 acres in size, and of 100 acres or greater created in accordance with this provision, may be redivided either (i) into parcels of no less than 50 acres pursuant to this exemption or (ii) in accordance with the proportionate share methodology outlined in Section 2-308(2) of the Fauquier County Zoning Ordinance (Amended by the Board of Supervisors February 22, 2000). only into lots with a minimum size of 100 acres or greater.  Use of this option shall preclude development in accordance with the sliding scale and its proportionate share methodology in Section 2-308 of the Fauquier County Zoning Ordinance except as outlined in Section 2-310.

 

Option 2 (Solution to an Unintended Consequence):  On August 26, 2004, the Planning Commission subjected the proposed text amendment to public hearing, and forwarded it unanimously to the Board of Supervisors that it be adopted. An unintended consequence of the Planning Commission proposed revision, is that parcels 100-249 acres in size, now would not qualify under this provision.  This situation was not the intention; the following language resolves the problem and along with the proportionate share:

 

2-310            Large Lot Development Option in the RA and RC Zones

 

As an alternative to division in accordance with the sliding scale zoning density set forth in Section 2-308, any parcel zoned RA or RC, which was of record as of May 21, 1981 and is 100 or larger in size, may be divided into no more than 3 lots of no less than 50 acres each in size, including any residual. Subsequent divisions shall result in all lots being at least 100 acres in size.  All such lots shall be exempt from the requirements of the Subdivision Ordinance as provided by Section 2-39(3)(C) of the Subdivision Ordinance.  No lot of less than 100 acres or less in size, and created in accordance with this alternative, shall be further divided. Lots in excess of 100 200 acres may be divided either in accordance with this Section or in accordance with the sliding scale zoning density set forth in Section 2-308.  However, a parcel of record as of May 21, 1981 may have one division, either family or administrative, of less than five (5) acres. The administrative or family division shall not impact the ability to subsequently use this alternative.

 

 

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

Department of Community Development

Development Community

Property Owners