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City ponders nonconforming lots

Jason Ferguson
Published: Thursday, April 4th, 2013

There are over 100 nonconforming lots in the City of Custer. How the city should handle those lots is a task it will have to take up in the near future.
At the April 1 meeting of the Custer City Council, city community development director Rex Harris told the council the city planning commission plans to tackle the nonconforming lot size situation in town, beginning with its next meeting. The commission will work through the issue for the next couple of months, he said.
A nonconforming lot is one that is below the minimum requirement of city code, which is 7,500 square feet. A nonconforming lot requires a variance to build on, and in turn, would more than likely require a variance on setback requirements. Nonconforming lots are also harder to sell and get financing on, and if a home were to burn down on a nonconforming lot, it could not be rebuilt.
Harris said if the city were to require all of those who own nonconforming lots to make their lots fully legal under new city ordinance, it would end up costing those residents up to $2,000 per person to re-survey and re-plat their lots. 
Harris said he felt it is “grossly unfair” to make residents with nonconforming lots spend that much money when what was done to their lots years ago was legal at the time. Because of that, he said, it may be easiest to grandfather the current nonconforming lots into the city.
The planning commission will eventually make a recommendation to the city council once it discusses the issue.
The council also heard from Dennis Shreves, president of Rocky Knolls Golf Assoc., who presented the golf association’s annual report.

There are over 100 nonconforming lots in the City of Custer. How the city should handle those lots is a task it will have to take up in the near future.

At the April 1 meeting of the Custer City Council, city community development director Rex Harris told the council the city planning commission plans to tackle the nonconforming lot size situation in town, beginning with its next meeting. The commission will work through the issue for the next couple of months, he said.

A nonconforming lot is one that is below the minimum requirement of city code, which is 7,500 square feet. A nonconforming lot requires a variance to build on, and in turn, would more than likely require a variance on setback requirements. Nonconforming lots are also harder to sell and get financing on, and if a home were to burn down on a nonconforming lot, it could not be rebuilt.

Harris said if the city were to require all of those who own nonconforming lots to make their lots fully legal under new city ordinance, it would end up costing those residents up to $2,000 per person to re-survey and re-plat their lots. 

Harris said he felt it is “grossly unfair” to make residents with nonconforming lots spend that much money when what was done to their lots years ago was legal at the time. Because of that, he said, it may be easiest to grandfather the current nonconforming lots into the city.

The planning commission will eventually make a recommendation to the city council once it discusses the issue.

The council also heard from Dennis Shreves, president of Rocky Knolls Golf Assoc., who presented the golf association’s annual report.

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