Town board mulls new guidelines for accessory dwelling units
July 12, 2014
Windsor Town Board members will take a second look at whether to allow accessory dwelling units on private residential lots in town after discussing the topic during the board’s Monday work session.
Under the proposed ordinance, an accessory dwelling unit — or ADU — would be a detached dwelling unit permitted on single-family residential lots in town. The buildings would need to conform with town development standards and building codes, and be between 500 and 950 square feet.
Homeowners associations or other covenant-based property owner associations would have the ability to adopt stricter guidelines for ADUs within their boundaries, or prohibit them altogether, according to the proposed ordinance.
The board previously considered an ordinance allowing for ADUs on residential town lots, however the board failed to get five votes in favor of the ordinance on second reading. At the suggestion of the board, the item was brought back for a second look.
Town Manager Kelly Arnold asked the board to discuss the topic and find out if there was interest from at least five of the board members to bring the ordinance back for consideration.
Board member Kristie Melendez said she was in favor of the ordinance previously and would continue to support it.
Board member Myles Baker was absent from the previous vote on the ordinance and said he wasn’t opposed to the idea, but said he had concerns about possible unintended consequences of creating new rental units in town.
Board member Ivan Adams brought up concerns about the number of occupants allowed in an ADU. The draft ordinance allowed up to two people to occupy an ADU, but he questioned what would happen if a couple was living in the unit and had a child.
Board member Christian Morgan said he’s publically heard one or two people speak in favor of the idea, but said he had heard from twice that number of people privately who voiced opposition to the idea. He said his main issue with the idea would be the challenges of enforcing the ordinance. Based on feedback from his constituents, he said he wouldn’t be in favor of the ordinance.
Board members Jeremy Rose and Robert Bishop-Cotner both said they were in favor of pursuing the idea further.