After a number of hearings on the Paved Area coverage issues, the Town COWncil determined that preserving the rural aesthetics of the Town is the main reason to regulate paved area in residential zoning districts. Therefore, we were very surprised that the COWncil approved the first reading of a very unnecessarily complex ordinance which still includes gravel as well as other modern permeable grass like products in its new Paved Area and Surface Coverage Ordinance. Hopefully, they will take a look at the second reading.
As we previously wrote, the rules should be designed to achieve that purpose in the manner which limits our use of our property as little as possible. Non-conforming lots (lots with existing paved areas over the limit) should be allowed to reuse paved areas elsewhere as long as they don’t they don’t increase the total paved area (using the new limits and percentages). Aesthetically gravel and products like grass crete and others which look natural while creating a useable surface and they should be allowed and not counted.
While this Ordinance does address the issue of equestrian riding arenas and larger lots, it still is more restrictive with its definition of what counts as paved or surface coverage and the flexibility needed by those many non-conforming parcels in Town. The goal of rural aesthetics can be met without these unnecessarily constraining restrictions.
For more information regarding paved area and the various products being discussed please see our Special Report.