The Dare County Board of Commissioners have scheduled a public hearing to receive input regarding four proposed zoning amendments that were presented by Planning Director Donna Creef at the Board’s meeting on Monday evening. The proposed alternatives are part of a continued effort by Commissioners to increase year-round, essential housing in the unincorporated areas of the county where the Board oversees planning and zoning initiatives. These proposals would increase the number of zoning districts that allow cluster home developments and add three new zoning sections, including educational housing alternatives, conditional use subdivisions and workforce housing units.
“We are listening to our constituents and understand the hardships a lack of essential housing has created for our community. Our Board is committed to finding ways to expand opportunities for essential housing in districts throughout unincorporated Dare County. These proposed amendments would accomplish that in portions of Hatteras Island, the mainland, Roanoke Island and Colington Island. We appreciate the willingness of the Planning Board to help meet the need for year-round housing and we challenge the towns to work with us to create more opportunities throughout Dare County,” said Chairman Bob Woodard.
Proposed changes to zoning amendments for cluster home developments would add eight additional zoning districts throughout the unincorporated areas that were not included in the 2018 zoning amendments. As defined by zoning ordinances, cluster home developments consist of more than one residential dwelling on one parcel of land that are occupied on a long-term basis. The current cluster home development regulations limit structures to 1,200 square feet of heated space.
A proposed new section would adopt regulations for Educational Housing Alternatives in 25 zoning districts. The 25 zoning districts already allow duplex and/or multifamily structures. Educational housing projects must be affiliated with Dare County, ECU Coastal Studies Institute, College of the Albemarle or the Dare County Board of Education. Any proposed projects would be reviewed as conditional use permits.
Conditional Use Subdivisions are proposed for 28 zoning districts and include a minimum parcel size of three acres. The proposed amendments would reduce the minimum lot size to 12,500 square feet with a dwelling size limitation of 1,200 square feet of heated space.
A proposed Workforce Housing Unit ordinance would establish regulations to allow the construction of housing units in conjunction with a commercial use in 17 commercial zoning districts. There is no size limit for the units. Instead, the overall lot coverage limit of 60% associated with commercial districts would be used to determine development on parcels.
The public hearing is set for 5:30 p.m. on Monday, September 16 in the Commissioners Meeting Room at the Dare County Administration Building in Manteo. Comments during the public hearing can be made from Hatteras Island via video link at the Fessenden Center Annex located at 47017 Buxton Back Road in Buxton. Written comments may be mailed to the Dare County Board of Commissioners at P.O. Box 1000, Manteo, NC, 27954. Review a complete draft of the changes to zoning ordinances and view the public hearing notice here. For additional information, contact Planning Director Donna Creef at 252.475.5873.