Wednesday, May 21, 2014
*Synced From Seattle and Real Estate Blog
Five of nine Seattle City Council members voted yesterday to set limits on building heights for homes built on small lots in single-family zones, an issue that has come to the forefront after an uptick in developers building tall (30 feet plus) narrow homes on lots that have been carved from back and side yards of stand-alone houses. The Seattle Times reports that the council vote set the height limit at 18 feet plus a five-foot pitched roof, or the average height of the surrounding homes, whichever is taller.
Residents have complained that homes built on these small lots sacrifice lawns, open space and trees in the name of density and are often out of scale with the more traditional homes in the neighborhood. Along with the building height limit, regulations will now prohibit development on lots smaller than 2,500 square feet, and neighbors will have the right to appeal proposed development on lots smaller than 3,200 square feet, according to the Times article. Council members also voted down what was called the “100 percent rule”, which would have allowed building on smaller lots if the lot was the average size of others on the same block.