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Purpose: This section creates a flexible, streamlined process where applicants can seek exceptions from the rules in this title where the rule would create hardships, or where the exception would result in superior design.

A. Applicability

1. This section applies to a request for a waiver from the requirements of Chapter 18.30. Examples include lot and street layout, block lengths, cul-de-sac lengths, parking, landscaping, lot width or lot depth.

2. This section applies to applications for plat or site development plan approval.

3. This section applies to the building design or site development standards established in Chapter 18.15 or 18.30 and zoning regulations of Chapter 18.20 regarding building height, required yard and setbacks.

B. Initiation

Waivers must be requested at the time of filing the application for the preliminary plat or preliminary site development plan approval. (Ord. 22-22 § 10, 2022)

C. Decision*

1. The Planning Commission may approve, approve with conditions, or deny the waiver request as part of the plat or site development plan approval.

2. The Planning Commission’s decision is final unless the underlying application requires further review by the Governing Body. In that case, the Governing Body will approve, approve with conditions, or deny the waiver request as part of the application, or remand the matter to the Planning Commission.

3. If the Planning Commission denies or conditionally approves the waiver, and the underlying application does not require review by the Governing Body, the applicant may appeal the Planning Commission’s decision to the City Manager within 10 days after it is rendered.

D. Approval Criteria

1. A waiver shall not be approved if it is contrary to the public interest or unnecessarily burdens the City.

2. The Approving Authority may approve the waiver if the applicant demonstrates one (1) or more of the following, and if the area proposed for modification is illustrated on the plat or site development plan:

a. An alternative higher quality development design with no negative impacts to either the residential or nonresidential properties.

b. Development restrictions imposed on the property to ensure low impact land uses, low scale buildings and a site design arrangement in which adjoining residential properties will not be negatively impacted by any change in the applicable regulations.

c. Existing topography, hedgerows or natural features provide significant screening and an appropriate buffer for adjoining properties.

d. Significant buffers are provided on adjoining residential properties and those properties will not be negatively impacted by any change in the applicable regulations.

e. The regulations impose an unnecessary hardship upon the property owner arising from conditions unique to the property and alternative site design, building design and building arrangements are not possible. In such instances, findings shall be prepared that:

(1) No private rights will be injured or endangered by the waiver.

(2) The public will suffer no loss or inconvenience thereby and that in justice to the applicant or applicants the application should be granted.

E. Subsequent Applications

Subsequent applications are allowed as permitted by the underlying application for approval.

F. Scope of Approval

The waiver is a condition of the underlying application for approval, and has the same effect as any approval of that application.

G. Recordkeeping

The Planning Official will maintain a record of approved waivers. The applicant must maintain a copy of the approved waiver, including any attachments.

* Editor’s Note: Ordinance 17-52 intended to reletter this subsection and subsequent subsections, starting with letter C.

(Ord. 22-22 § 10, 2022; Ord. 17-52 §§ 27, 41, 2017; Ord. 16-20 § 4, 2016; Ord. 02-54 § 2, 2002)