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Lot Size Charter Amendment Going Before Voters

Some adjustments made to amendment

Avon residents will be able to vote in November on an amendment to the city charter establishing a minimum lot size for future subdivisions.

approved submitting a revised charter amendment to the Lorain County Board of Elections to put it on the November ballot. The deadline to file for the November election is Wednesday.

The revision has the minimum lot size as 15,000 square feet and 100 foot minimum width, with allowances for narrow but deep flag lots or wedge-shaped cul-de-sac lots.

Councilman Dennis McBride said he felt the minimums should be 17,600 square feet with a 110-foot minimum width, or maybe even a 125-foot width.

With larger and larger homes being built with side-entry garages and bigger driveways, he said, the current minimum doesn't offer enough green space for water to percolate into the ground rather than run off hard surfaces into the storm drains.

Mayor Jim Smith said many cluster housing developments done in the city over the last 15 to 20 years were "a huge mistake."

"It's a mistake we don't want to repeat again," he said.

A charter amendment, he said, would prevent future councils from bringing back cluster housing without a lot of work and reflection.

Only new subdivisions submitted after the amendment is approved would be affected by it.

Carla McWilliams, who said she has owned 70 acres near Detroit and Long Roads for about 40 years, said the amendment would "penalize" landowners like her who have not developed their properties yet. Her concern was that it would cost more per acre for her to develop her land.

Smith and members of council disagreed. Smith said that developers are responsible for the infrastructure of the development, including water retention and meeting state and federal regulations.

"You can't expect the rest of the citizens to absorb those costs," Smith said.

Kristin Leb August 09, 2011 at 01:30 PM
Too many "McMansions" in town as it is. I'd prefer to see larger lot sizes so they actually fit the yard and have that neighborhood feel, rather than a ghost town.

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