Small Lot Hearing This Friday

This house, now appreciated by neighbors, would be banned under the DPD proposal.

This house, now appreciated by neighbors, would be banned under the DPD proposal.

We’ve been hearing  about the problems with small-lot legislation being considered by the City Council. Here’s what David Neiman a local architect says about the problems created by the legislation because of it’s efforts to placate a small group of angry neighbors:

 These defects are known to the planners at DPD.  They understand them and fully appreciate them.  I suspect if their mandate in writing this proposal was to come up with a way to facilitate better small lot development, the outcome would be quite different.  Instead, the City leadership has a pitchfork mob at their door with a list of demands, and they have directed DPD to take dictation. 

A complex code is made more complex and homes get harder to build.

And Matt Gangemi writes about the downzone created by the legislation which penalizes  innocent by standers, owners of existing single-family homes.

If you live on a lot less than a 3,200 square feet in size, the maximum height has effectively gone from 35 feet down to 23 feet. That addition you dreamed of will never happen, and even if you never planned to expand your house, your home value just went down. The pool of buyers will look more favorably at your neighbor’s slightly larger lot, knowing that they can either build up or at least keep the value in case the next owner wants to build up. Even if the physical home you live in is the same, the potential square footage of your home just went down.

Now people who might have saved themselves a move and the purchase of new home will have their quality of life and finances impacted if the legislation passes.

Your opportunity to weigh in comes this Friday at 2PM at City Hall in Council Chambers. Please make an effort to attend or write Councilmember Mike O’Brien, chair of the PLUS Committee.

Small Lot Development

Issue Information:
http://www.seattle.gov/dpd/codesrules/changestocode/smalllots/background/default.htm

Legislation: Council Bill 118052

Committee Review Schedule:

  • Friday April 18, 2014, 2:00pm – Public Hearing and committee discussion
  • Tuesday May 6, 2014, 2:00pm – Committee deliberation and possible vote
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