MINUTES OF THE LARIMER COUNTY BOARD OF ADJUSTMENT

 

October 23, 2007

 

            The regular meeting of the Larimer County Board of Adjustment was held in the County Board Hearing Room in the Larimer County Courthouse, Fort Collins, Colorado at 7:00 p.m., October 23, 2007.  Members Jean Christman, Eric Berglund, Matt Strauch, and Greg Christensen were present.  Also in attendance were County Planning Staff members Matt Lafferty and Samantha Mott, and Assistant County Attorney William Ressue.

 

            By Motion duly made, seconded and carried, the reading of the Minutes for the meeting of August 28, 2007 were dispensed with and such Minutes were approved.

 

File No:           #07-BOA0678  (Humphrey Setback Variance)

Owner:            Gary Humphrey

Applicant:       Ellen O’Connell

Property Description:

 

Lot 41, of the Amended Plat of Lots 2, 3, 4, 41, 42, 49, 50, 54, and 55, Block 5 Glen Haven Subdivision, Larimer County, Colorado

 

            The Application of Ellen O’Connell, requesting a variance was presented to the Board.  The Application requested a setback variance upon the above-described property to replace an existing nonconforming house with a new house on virtually the same footprint.  The single family dwelling would be 6 feet from the edge of a road rather that the 45 feet, 13.4 feet from the west side property line and 7.8 feet from the east side property line rather than the required minimum of 25 feet, and 10.5 feet from the centerline of an intermittent stream rather than the required minimum of 100 feet in the E1-Estate zone.

 

            The Board having heard the testimony and arguments concerning the Application, and having reviewed the record and being fully advised in the premises adopted the following findings:

 

Findings

 

1.         This hearing has been duly advertised in a newspaper of general circulation as required by law.

 

2.         The property location is SE 27-6-72; 7661 County Road 43, Glen Haven; located approximately 650 feet northeast of the intersection of County Road 43 and North Fork Road in the Glen Haven Subdivision.

 

3.         Site data is as follows:

 

a.         Land Area:                               0.70 Acres      

b.    Proposed Use:                          Single Family Residence

c.    Existing Zoning:             E1-Estate

d.    Surrounding Zoning:                  E1-Estate

e.    Existing Land Use:                    Single Family Residence

f.    Surrounding Land Uses:            Residential, Recreational

g.    Access:                                    North Fork Road

 

4.         The applicant requests a setback variance to replace an existing nonconforming house with a new house on virtually the same footprint.  The single family dwelling would be 6 feet from the edge of a road rather that the 45 feet, 13.4 feet from the west side property line and 7.8 feet from the east side property line rather than the required minimum of 25 feet, and 10.5 feet from the centerline of an intermittent stream rather than the required minimum of 100 feet in the E1-Estate zone.

 

5.         There are no major issues or concerns with this request.

 

6.         There were no persons in attendance who objected to the request.

 

7.         The applicable review criteria for the variance have been met as follows:

 

            A.        There are special circumstances or conditions, such as exceptional topographic conditions, narrowness, shallowness or the shape of property, or other extraordinary and exceptional situation or condition of such piece of property, that are peculiar to the land or structure for which the variance is requested.

 

            The lot is a nonconforming lot 0.70 acres in size.  The property has significant site constraints such as slopes and a long narrow shape.  Given these constraints as well as the close proximity to a stream, complying with the setback requirements severely restricts the buildable area of the lot.  Currently there is an existing nonconforming home built in 1930 prior to established setback requirements.  The existing home already encroaches into the front, side, and stream setbacks.  The location of the new home will be on virtually the same footprint of the existing home footprint except it will be farther back from the road and the stream.


 

            B.        The special circumstances are not the result of actions or inactions by the applicant or the current owner.

 

            The above circumstances are not the result of action or inaction of the applicant.  The property’s physical characteristics and location were not created or altered by the applicant.

 

            C.        The strict interpretation and enforcement of the Land Use Code provisions listed above would deprive the applicant of rights commonly enjoyed by other land in the area or land with the same zoning designation and would cause an unnecessary and undue hardship.

 

            Strict enforcement of the provisions of the Code will cause the owners an unnecessary hardship by limiting construction to an extremely small area of the property, much smaller than the footprint of the existing home.  In addition, review of properties in the surrounding area indicates that encroachment into the stream setback is a right commonly enjoyed by other buildings in the area.  There are other buildings in the immediate vicinity that do not meet the required setback distances because they were either granted variances or were built prior to the setback requirements.  If denied this request, the owners would be denied a similar right.

 

            D.        Granting the variance is the minimum action that will allow use of the land or structure.

 

            Granting the requested variance is the minimum action that will allow the applicant to construct and use the proposed single-family dwelling. However, with all the setbacks in effect, the property only has a small area allowable for building, and the current nonconforming building encroaches already into all the same setbacks. 

 

            E.         Granting the variance will not result in a substantial adverse impact on other property in the vicinity of the subject land or structure.

           

            It is not anticipated that granting the variance will adversely affect any neighbors or their properties.  No objections have been received by any of the neighboring property owners at this time.  The Board of Directors of the Glen Haven Association has no objection to the request as submitted.

 

            F.         Granting the variance is consistent with the purpose of the Land Use Code and the Master Plan.

           

            Granting the setback variance requested would not impair the intent and purpose of the code or Master Plan.  Granting the variances will allow the owner reasonable use of the land and will not adversely impact neighboring properties or their owners.

 

            G.        The recommendations of referral agencies have been considered.

           

            Referral agency comments were considered. No objections were offered from other agencies or departments.

 

8.         To approve this request would promote the harmonious development of the area, would be in the best interest of the people of Larimer County, would promote the convenience, prosperity and general welfare of the applicant and the immediate inhabitants of the area, and would be in consonance with the intent and purposes of the Larimer County Land Use Code.

 

Jean Christman moved and Greg Christensen seconded the Motion that the Board adopt the following Resolution:

 

Resolution

 

WHEREAS, the Board having adopted its Findings and said Findings being incorporated in this Resolution by this reference as though fully set forth herein;

 

NOW, BE IT RESOLVED that applicant be and she hereby is granted her setback variance as requested subject to the following conditions:

 

1.    Failure to comply with any conditions of the Variance approval may result in reconsideration of the use and possible revocation of the approval by the Board of Adjustment.

 

2.    All future additions or buildings that would be within setbacks as defined in the Land Use Code must go through the proper county review and planning process prior to construction.

 

3.    This approval is only for the footprint of the building.  The number of bedrooms will be conditioned upon the ability to comply with the sewer system regulations.  This will be verified at the time of the building permit application.

 

4.         This approval shall automatically expire one year from the date of this Resolution unless prior to expiration the applicants (a) take affirmative action consistent with this approval or (b) submit a written request showing good cause to extend the one year time limit.  

 

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that if this action involves approval of a use (or expansion of a use) not otherwise permitted on the subject property, and if in the future the subject property is divided, then this action shall only pertain to one parcel resulting from any such division(s) and the Board of County Commissioners shall in its discretion determine which one of the resulting parcels shall enjoy the benefits of this action.

 

The question was called and members Jean Christman, Eric Berglund, Matt Strauch, and Greg Christensen voted in favor of the Resolution.  The Findings and Resolution were duly adopted and the setback variance was granted subject to conditions.

 

File No:           #07-BOA0679  (Murray Setback Variance)

Owner:            Patrick and Karolyn Murray

Applicant:       Van Horn Engineering

Property Description:

 

A Portion of Section 2 and 3, Township 4 North, Range 72 West of the 6th P.M., which is more particularly described as commencing at the ¼ corner common to said sections 2 and 3 and with all bearings relative to the East line of the NE ¼ of said Section 2 bearing North 2 degrees 39 minutes 58 seconds west; thence North 89 degrees 57 minutes 11 seconds West a distance of 116.57 feet to a highway brass cap in concrete which is on the Easterly right-of-way line of U.S. Highway No. 36 and the East-West quarter line of said Section 3 and the true beginning:

Thence north 78 degrees 21 minutes 00 seconds East a distance of 980.00 feet; thence South 10 degrees 30 minutes 19 seconds east a distance of 187 feet; thence South 80 degrees 00 minutes 00 seconds East a distance of 428.28 feet to a point on the North-South centerline of the SW ¼ of said section 2; thence south 02 degrees 15 minutes 13 seconds East along said North-South centerline, a distance of 1001.82 feet; thence West a distance of 1288.33 feet to a point on the easterly right-of-way of US highway 36 thence the following three courses and distance along said easterly right-of-way ling of US HWY 36; thence North 06 degrees 50 minutes 09 seconds West a distance of 35.31 feet; thence 260.17 feet along the arc of a curve to the right , said curve has a delta angle of 02 degrees 37 minutes 28 seconds a radius of 5680.00 feet and is subtended by chord which bears North 09 degrees 59 minutes 09 seconds West a distance of 260.15 feet; thence North 08 degrees 40 minutes 25 seconds West a distance of 779.72 feet to the True Point Beginning, County of Larimer, State of Colorado

 

            The Application of Van Horn Engineering, requesting a variance was presented to the Board.  The Application requested a setback variance upon the above-described property to allow a storage building to be located 9 feet from the centerline of an intermittent stream rather than the required minimum of 100 feet in the O-Open zone.

 

            The Board having heard the testimony and arguments concerning the Application, and having reviewed the record and being fully advised in the premises adopted the following findings:

 

Findings

 

1.         This hearing has been duly advertised in a newspaper of general circulation as required by law.

 

2.         The property location is 2-4-72; 5075 West Highway 36; located approximately 5 miles south and east of the intersection of Highway 36 and Saint Vrain/Highway 7.

 

3.         Site data is as follows:

 

a.         Land Area:                               35 Acres

b.         Proposed Use:                          Single Family Residence

c.         Existing Zoning:             O-Open

d.         Surrounding Zoning:                  O-Open

e.         Existing Land Use:                    Vacant

f.          Surrounding Land Uses:            Residential, Recreational, National Forest,                                                                     Division of Wildlife

g.         Access:                                    Highway 36

 

4.         The applicant requests a setback variance to allow 60 foot by 40 foot storage building to be located 9 feet from an intermittent stream. 

 

5.         The major concern with this application is the location of the structure in proximity to the intermittent stream.  There are numerous site constraints that warrant the need for a variance.  The applicant’s request for a 2400 square foot building is to store recreational vehicles, such as a camper trailer or a boat and trailer, as well as tractors and other tools.  The Land Use Code does not restrict the size of storage buildings or garages on lots greater than 5 acres as long as the total square footage of the detached storage buildings and garages do not exceed ten percent of the net area of the lot.

 

6.         There were no persons in attendance who objected to the request.


 

7.         The applicable review criteria for the variance have been met as follows:

 

            A.        There are special circumstances or conditions, such as exceptional topographic conditions, narrowness, shallowness or the shape of property, or other extraordinary and exceptional situation or condition of such piece of property, that are peculiar to the land or structure for which the variance is requested.

           

            The property is a 35-acre lot with steep slopes and numerous rock outcroppings.  There is one flat area where the proposed building is to be built and there is another fairly flat area accessible only by Hell Canyon Road which is the future location of the house.  In addition there appears to be another potential area to build on the other side of the intermittent stream, but it does not have access currently and it would most likely need a variance from the stream as well.

 

            B.        The special circumstances are not the result of actions or inactions by the applicant or the current owner.

 

              The topography of the lot and the location of the stream are not the results of the applicant.

 

            C.        The strict interpretation and enforcement of the Land Use Code provisions listed above would deprive the applicant of rights commonly enjoyed by other land in the area or land with the same zoning designation and would cause an unnecessary and undue hardship.

 

            Strict interpretation and enforcement of the Code would cause unnecessary and undue hardship, because the only other site that meets the setback requirements and appears fairly level would be accessible by Hell Canyon Road and the vehicles that would be stored in this building could not traverse Hell Canyon Road.

 

            D.        Granting the variance is the minimum action that will allow use of the land or structure.

 

            Granting a variance is the minimum action that will allow a secondary structure to be built on one of the only other relatively flat areas on the property.

 

            E.         Granting the variance will not result in a substantial adverse impact on other property in the vicinity of the subject land or structure.

 

            It is not anticipated that granting the variance will adversely affect any neighbors or their property.  No objections have been received by any of the neighboring property owners at this time. 

 

            F.         Granting the variance is consistent with the purpose of the Land Use Code and the Master Plan.

 

            Granting a variance will allow the owner reasonable use of the land and will not adversely impact neighboring properties or their owners.

 

            G.        The recommendations of referral agencies have been considered.

           

            Referral agency comments were considered. No objections were offered from other agencies or departments.

 

8.         To approve this request would promote the harmonious development of the area, would be in the best interest of the people of Larimer County, would promote the convenience, prosperity and general welfare of the applicant and the immediate inhabitants of the area, and would be in consonance with the intent and purposes of the Larimer County Land Use Code.

 

Jean Christman moved and Greg Christensen seconded the Motion that the Board adopt the following Resolution:

 

Resolution

 

WHEREAS, the Board having adopted its Findings and said Findings being incorporated in this Resolution by this reference as though fully set forth herein;

 

NOW, BE IT RESOLVED that applicant be and it hereby is granted its setback variance as requested subject to the following conditions:

 

1.         Failure to comply with any conditions of the Variance approval may result in reconsideration of the use and possible revocation of the approval by the Board of Adjustment.

 

2.         All future additions or buildings that would be within setbacks as defined in the Land Use Code must go through the proper county review and planning process prior to construction.

 

3.         Prior to issuance of a building permit the floodplain information and calculations prepared by Van Horn Engineering shall be signed and stamped by a professional engineer and submitted to the Engineering Department for their records, and the lowest opening elevation of the proposed structure shall be set at or above 7889.9 feet to minimize the potential for structural damage in a major flood event. 

 

4.         Prior to issuance of a building permit a professional engineer must prepare an erosion and sediment control plan to address the construction and use phase of this project.  This plan must be submitted to the Planning Department for review and approval.

 

5.         This approval shall automatically expire one year from the date of this Resolution unless prior to expiration the applicants (a) take affirmative action consistent with this approval or (b) submit a written request showing good cause to extend the one year time limit.

 

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that if this action involves approval of a use (or expansion of a use) not otherwise permitted on the subject property, and if in the future the subject property is divided, then this action shall only pertain to one parcel resulting from any such division(s) and the Board of County Commissioners shall in its discretion determine which one of the resulting parcels shall enjoy the benefits of this action.

 

The question was called and members Jean Christman, Eric Berglund, Matt Strauch, and Greg Christensen voted in favor of the Resolution.  The Findings and Resolution were duly adopted and the setback variance was granted subject to conditions.

 

                                                     ***

 

By Motion duly made, seconded and carried, the meeting was adjourned at 7:15 p.m.

 

 

APPROVAL OF MINUTES

 

            By Motion duly made, seconded and carried the above and foregoing minutes were approved on the _____ day of __________________, 2007.

 

                                                            LARIMER COUNTY BOARD OF ADJUSTMENT

 

 

                                                By:       __________________________________________

 

 

 

ATTEST:

 

 

________________________________