Forsyth County “Lot” Definition Change Going Before Planning Commission

Forsyth County Planning Commission Approves New “Lot” Definition in First Public Hearing
The Forsyth County Planning Commission approved a new definition of “lot” in an update to the Unified Development Code on Tuesday, August 28.  At the meeting, the Planning Department presented an updated definition that included language that would exclude easements when calculating lot size.  At the Planning Commission meeting, the following amended definition was unanimously approved:

Lot:  A portion or parcel of land separated from other portions or parcels by description (such as on a subdivision plat of record or a survey map or plat) or described by metes and bounds, and intended for use, transfer of ownership, or for building development.  The word A “lot” shall not include any portion of a dedicated right-of way.  For purposes of calculating lot sizes, a lot shall also exclude any areas reserved for easements upon which, by the nature thereof, construction is prohibited, i.e., easements for ingress and egress to other lots or properties, major power line transmission easements, etc.  For purposes of calculating lot sizes, “lot” shall also not include strips of property, with widths less than the minimum lot width of the particular zoning district, intended to provide access to a given lot or parcel; provided, however, land less than the minimum required lot width may be considered as part of the square footage lot size calculation in those instances where lot lines are radial to a curved street or cul-de-sac on a major or minor subdivision plat approved by the Department or the Planning Commission.

This definition will go before the Board of Commissioners next month for a second public hearing and final approval.  The Council for Quality Growth has been working with Planning Department staff and Planning Commission members throughout the process of determining a new definition of “lot.”  This definition is simplified and more consistent with surrounding counties and municipalities.  We would like to thank Council members Ethan Underwood, Emory Lipscomb, Daryl Cook, Ray Cunliffe, Alan Neal and Paul Corley for their help on this issue along with our industry partners at the Greater Atlanta Homebuilders Association.