Sunday, Oct 23, 2016
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Ottawa Hills to study proposed zoning rules

Ottawa Hills officials will take a second look at a proposed zoning ordinance after hearing from members of the audience at a recent public hearing.

Marc Thompson, village manager, said some residents pointed out that the proposed code's 12-foot height limit for some accessory buildings might be too low in some instances.

Mr. Thompson noted that the limit would probably be appropriate for a storage shed, but not if someone wanted to build a detached two-car garage.

“Of course, one remedy could be that we could issue a variance,” Mr. Thompson said. He added that it might be better to look at that section again rather than build something into the code that could require more variance-requests than necessary.

Mr. Thompson added that the one-year limit on the time from beginning construction of a house to completion raised questions.

Mr. Thompson said that he was pleased with the discussion at the hearing, because council members and village officials don't want to pass the first changes in the code since 1978 and later have problems.

The main changes in the proposed code are that a homeowner, in most instances, must hire an approved general contractor for any project estimated to cost $50,000 or more. Also, the proposed code defines by district the amount of space that can be occupied by main and accessory structures on a lot.

Mr. Thompson said another public meeting will be scheduled after the revisions are made.

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