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Posted on: June 10, 2022

Land Use Code Update Available for Review

Land Use Code Update (JPG)

Submitted for public review, please find the draft revision of Title 16 Cedaredge Land Use Code. This process was initiated in May 2021 and has steadily progressed since that time through multiple reviews by the Land Use Code Steering Committee (LUCSC). This update was initiated because of a need to revise, clarify, streamline and to make the regulations more usable. The previous (current) land-use code (LUC) had evolved over many years with a series of piecemeal additions, amendments and other modifications. The net effect was a document that in many areas was difficult to understand or administer by applicants and by staff. This “revision” was not intended to be a complete rewrite of the document from scratch.

The public is invited to review and submit comments prior to or during the Public Hearing on Wednesday, July 6, at 3 pm, at the Cedaredge Civic Center. Comment can be sent to Kami Collins at kcollins@cedaredgecolorado.com

Highlights of the changes in the LUC:

  • The overall format of the original code was retained and modified to be consistent throughout the 193 pages.  There still may remain some formatting errors, but I believe the majority of them have been addressed.  I am happy to continue improving the document formatting as issues are identified.
  • The mobile home (now identified as manufactured housing) and RV Park regulations were pulled from Title 15 and moved into Title 16 because they better fit under the land use and development section.  These regulations have been to some extent modified and updated to reflect the new terms of manufactured and modular housing.   Under state law, “mobile homes” as they have been previously known, are no longer produced.
  • A table of land dedication requirements was created to simplify identification about when and how much land dedication is required depending on the type of land use application.  A table offers a better visual depiction of this information.
  • The Code Enforcement section has been somewhat reformatted and clarified to better address the various types of notices, remedies and if necessary, enforcement actions.
  • The previous Annexation section simply referenced state statute. This required applicants to search online or find other sources for that information.  This code update includes complete language consistent with the Colorado Revised Statutes on annexation.  Now, applicants can find all of the information in one place.
  • Parking requirements have been put into a table and expanded to improve usability.
  • A better and clearer description of the various zone districts has been included in the regulations.  This helps an applicant better understand the purpose and functions of the individual districts.  This should help applicants better understand the function of the various zone districts as they use the “Zoning Table of Uses”.
  • A table of Dimensional Standards has been created to more clearly stipulate minimum lot size, maximum lot coverage, maximum building height, setbacks and other information.  The current code mixes this information in with the zoning use table which makes it very difficult to find and understand.
  • The original zoning table was a blend of uses, lot sizes, dimensional standards and other information in a somewhat cryptic configuration.  A new zoning table of uses has been created which offer a much greater detail of land use types in a table format.  This configuration allows a user to access and understand where specific land uses are permitted, are conditional uses or are prohibited in each zone district.   More detail has been included on various types of uses to better allow an applicant to find use types without staff having to go through an interpretation process.  It should be noted that the Zoning Table of Uses highlights in yellow two uses in the agricultural category.  This change/clarification conflicts with the current licensing/permitting process for livestock and other agricultural related activities.  The LUCSC recommended that large animals be prohibited in all zone districts because they better fit outside of Cedaredge on larger acreages.  This change would not force existing property owners to remove their animals because they would be grandfathered.  Keeping of bees, domestic fowl for noncommercial purposes is recommended as a conditional use in R1, R2 and as a permitted use in the Industrial District.   Please note that the Cedaredge LUC describes an industrial zone district but does not include one on the official zoning map.  Part of this update process will include an updated Cedaredge Zoning Map. The Planning Commission and Board of Trustees can consider if and where an industrial zone district should be included on the zoning map.
  • A table of Accessory Uses has been included to allow an applicant to more easily understand what accessory uses are permitted and in what zone districts.
  • Home Occupations, Accessory Dwellings and Cottage Industry were included in the definition section along with the requirements for each of the uses.   The revised document pulled the standards/requirements for these uses out of the definition section and into their own zoning sections.  Again, this makes it easier for an owner/applicant to find the appropriate information.
  • The current code provides for to “Overlay Districts” for Green Space and an area identified as “Water Restricted Overlay”.  The Water Restricted Overlay was conceived for and included for a small portion of town for water rights purposes.  The function of that overlay district has been met and it is no longer needed.  It has been removed from the code and when the map is updated, that designation will be removed from the map.
  • The nonconformity section of the code has been expanded to address the three types of nonconformities: Nonconforming Uses, Nonconforming Structures, and Nonconforming Lots.  This expansion offers an owner of a nonconformity to better understand the terms and conditions of that situation and offers protections for continuing those uses within the parameters identified.
  • The site development standards section of the code has been revised to better address parking with an illustration of parking designs along with then off-street parking design standards table.  This visual information should make it easier for applicants to determine design and size of parking spaces based upon their configuration.
  • The loading areas section of these regulations was revised to allow for waivers of loading areas for commercial businesses that do not require a 14-foot wide by 35-foot loading area.
  • The Driveways and Access section moved text descriptions of these standards into a table to make them easier to understand.
  • Fences, Walls and Berms was revised to include berms with standards for constructing berms.  Some modifications and clarifications were included for fence construction as well.
  • The Landscaping and Screening section was updated to expand and address xeriscape and use of native plant materials for better drought tolerance and minimization of water demands.  Landscaping standards have been included to identify planting sizes for trees, evergreens and shrubs.  Other information has been included to make it clear to an applicant what the requirements are for landscaped areas.
  • Language was added to specify maximum permissible noise levels that mirror the requirements of the state statutes.  This information is included in a table to make it more easily accessible.
  • Some modifications and clarifications were made to the subdivision regulations, but for the most part that material remained intact.  An expanded section on subdivision improvements agreements was included to better describe the elements of a Subdivision Improvements Agreement (SIA) or Development Improvements Agreement (DIA) depending on the type of land use application.  This section now more clearly specifies the types of security that would be required as part of a subdivision improvements agreement.
  • The Planned Unit Development (PUD) requirements have been put into their own chapter because of the unique characteristics of PUD’s.   Hopefully this makes it easier for applicants to utilize the PUD process and understand the flexibility it offers.   The PUD section now includes language related to minor and major PUD amendments and how those may be accomplished.
  • The chapter on Review Procedures has been modified to include an expanded table showing types of application reviews.  Other changes have been included to address the appeal process and review of submittals.  A flowchart of the application process has been included.  A table visually depicting the application review process for various types of land use submittals identifies the reviewing body, decision-making body and appellant entities.  Similarly, a table detailing the “Duration of Application Approval” is included to visually show this information instead of using text.  The timeframes for Major Subdivision Preliminary Plan and PUD Development have been expanded from two years to three years.  This is a little more realistic for projects of this magnitude while still allowing a defined timeframe for these application submittals.
  • The Board of Adjustment section has been modified to better clarify the appeals process, but the major elements remain intact.
  • The chapter on Application Submittal Requirements has been expanded to better detail the site plan submittal items.  The other sections remain largely intact.  Some clarification was made to the PUD section along with a reference to the new PUD chapter.
  • The sign code includes some additional definitions of types of signs.  A table has been inserted that relates to digital or electronic sign standards which was absent in the current version of the regulations.  There has been discussion about completely revising the sign code because that is a need, but that typically is a large effort and was beyond the scope and budget of the code update. A copy of DeBeque sign code has been delivered to the town staff as a model for a smaller community.  Again, that revision is something that will occur at another time.
  • The chapter on Fence Code Standards was slightly updated to streamline the process and allow for administrative review/approval certain signs.   The permitting process specifies that when fences are within 24 inches of a property line a survey is required to avoid individuals placing signs on an adjacent owner’s parcel.
  • Manufactured (mobile) home regulations were modified to reflect the designation of “manufactured home” instead of “mobile home” to be consistent with the current identification of these units.   Similarly, the manufactured home park regulations revised to reflect the new classification of these units.   Recreational vehicles and recreational vehicle park regulations were pulled from Title 15 and included in Title 16 where they belong.  These code sections remain largely intact.
  • Finally, the Definition section of the code was slightly reformatted and some additional definitions were included.  For example, the recent revision of state law regarding Child Care Centers and Child Care Homes were added to reflect the change in law.   Also, as previously noted, Accessory Dwelling Units and Cottage Industry language was moved in part out of the definition section and placed in the body of the code where it belongs.  Those two uses now reflect the definitions only.

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