THE TOWN OF WASHINGTON

       Washington , Virginia

 

 

       ZONING ORDINANCE

 

           Date:  August 25, 2003

 

                                                                    PREAMBLE

 

 

            Section 1          TITLE AND DEFINITIONS

 

The regulations contained in the following Articles constitute the "Zoning Ordinance of Washington , VA. "  For definitions of terms used within this ordinance, refer to Combined Ordinance Definitions Enacted May 14, 1997 , as amended

 

            Section 2          PURPOSE AND INTENT

 

These regulations are promulgated for the specific and implied purposes as set forth in Article 9, Chapter 22, Title 15.2 of the 1950 Code of Virginia, as amended, including the implementation of the adopted Comprehensive Plan, and the goals contained therein. Further, the governing body of the Town of Washington, Virginia has found that the public necessity, convenience, general welfare, and good zoning practice have required that this amended zoning ordinance of August 25, 2003 be approved.

 

            Section 3          MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS

 

In interpreting and applying the provisions of this ordinance, said provisions shall be held to be the minimum requirements for the promotion of the public safety, health, convenience, comfort, prosperity, or general welfare.  It is not the intent of this ordinance to interfere with or abrogate or annul any easements, covenants or other agreements between parties; provided, however, that where this ordinance imposes a greater restriction upon the use and dimensions of buildings or premises, or requires larger open space than is required by other ordinances, rules, regulations or by easements, covenants or agreements, the provisions of this ordinance shall govern, except where expressly qualified in the Articles that follow.

 

 

 

 

 


                                                            ARTICLE 1

 

                                    CREATION OF ZONING DISTRICTS

 

1-1                   No uses, practices, and structures may be employed or constructed within the Town of Washington except those which are specifically permitted by this Ordinance within any Zoning District, either as non-conforming uses or structures, "by right", or by Special Use Permit. There are hereby created four zoning districts within the Town as follows:

 

1-1-1          VILLAGE RESIDENTIAL (VR)

                                   

1-1-2           VILLAGE MIXED USE (VM)

 

1-1-3           VILLAGE SERVICES (VS)

 

1-1-4           RURAL RESIDENTIAL (RR)

 

1-2                   The areas of the Town which comprise each of the districts referred to in 1-1-1, 1-1-2, 1-1-3, and 1-1-4 above are as set forth on the map attached hereto and made a part hereof, or as shown on any properly amended map subsequent to this amendment.

 

1-3       USES PERMITTED BY RIGHT   (Subject to all other requirements of this ordinance)

 

1-3-1                      The following uses are permitted by right in every zoning district (Commercial, Craft and Office uses shall submit a Development Plan in accordance with Article II):

 

a.       Single-family residences

 

b.         Non-commercial beekeeping

           

c.         Orchards, gardens & vineyards

 

d.         Making of cider and/or wine

 

e.         Keeping of no more than three dogs per dwelling unit

 

1-3-2          VILLAGE RESIDENTIAL

 

a.         Temporary signs and non-commercial signs no larger than six square feet

 

1-3-3          VILLAGE MIXED USE

                               

a.         Temporary signs and non-commercial signs no larger than six square feet, and signs for permitted commercial use no larger than 15 square feet

 

b.         Retail uses of less than 1000 square feet in an existing retail space

c.         Craft occupations in an existing retail space

 

1-3-4          VILLAGE SERVICES

 

a.         Temporary signs and non-commercial signs no larger than six square feet, and signs for permitted commercial uses no larger than 15 square feet

 

b.         Retail uses of less than 1000 square feet in an existing retail space

 

c.         Craft occupations in an existing retail space

 

d.         Public buildings for offices, courtrooms, meeting rooms, jails

 

e.         Offices in buildings of not more than two stories above ground with not more than 1000 square feet on the ground floor

 

1-3-5          RURAL RESIDENTIAL

 

a.         Temporary signs and non-commercial signs no larger than six square feet, and signs for permitted commercial uses no larger than 15 square feet

 

b.         Agricultural and forestry uses and structures, including the keeping of farm animals, except swine, and except for structures exceeding 200 square feet for the commercial raising of poultry.

 

1-4        USES BY SPECIAL PERMIT

 

The following uses shall be permitted subject to all the other requirements of this ordinance, including the General Standards of 6-1-1 and the Additional Standards of Section 6-1-2, only upon obtaining a Special Use Permit from the Town Governing Body as provided in Article 6.

 

All uses requiring a Special Use Permit shall be governed by the requirements of Article II and Article VI, and applicants shall prepare and submit a development plan.

 

1-4-1          The following uses may be permitted by Special Use Permit in every zoning district:

 

a.         Two family residences

 

b.         Public utilities

 

c.         Schools, parks and/or playgrounds

 

d.         Accessory apartment

 

e.                   Setback exception

 

 

f.          Height exception

 

g.         Package sewage treatment plants

 

h.                   Adaptive re-use of existing structures

 

i.          Sewage treatment facilities and accessory buildings

 

j.          Amplified external music or sound.

 

 

 

1-4-2           VILLAGE RESIDENTIAL

 

a.         Bed and Breakfast establishments

           

1-4-3          VILLAGE MIXED USE

 

a.         Multi-family dwelling

 

b.         Museums

 

c.         A retail use of less than 1,000 square feet in a structure converted from non-retail use(s), or in a new structure constructed with retail use of less than 1,000 square feet on an un-developed lot.

 

d.         Retail uses greater than 1000 square feet in an existing retail location

 

e.         Bed and Breakfast establishments

 

f.          Hotels and restaurants

 

g.         Houses of Worship

 

h.         Commercial signs larger than 15 square feet

 

i.          Public libraries

 

1-4-4          VILLAGE SERVICES

 

a.         Retail uses of greater than 1000 square feet in an existing retail location

 

b.         A retail use of less than 1,000 square feet in a structure converted from non-retail use(s), or in a new structure constructed for retail use of less than 1,000 square feet on an un-developed lot.

 

c.         Bed and Breakfast establishments

 

d.         Clubs and lodges civic, fraternal, or patriotic, with bona fide membership

 

e.         Hotels

 

f.          Restaurants

 

g.         Museums

 

h.         Houses of Worship

 

i.          Offices in buildings of not more than two stories above ground and not more than 1600 square feet on the ground floor

 

j.          Commercial signs larger than 15 square feet

 

k.         Craft occupations in other than existing retail space

 

l.          Public libraries

 

1-4-5           RURAL RESIDENTIAL

 

a.         Home industries

 

b.         Utilities

 

c.         Agricultural production, packing, processing and storage

 

d.         Houses of worship

 

e.         Public libraries

 

f.          Bed and Breakfast establishments

 

g.         Commercial signs larger than 15 square feet

 

h.         Wayside markets

 

i.          Commercial beekeeping

           

1-5        GENERAL PROVISIONS APPLICABLE TO ALL DISTRICTS

 

1-5-1       Public fairs may be permitted for defined times with such conditions as the Town Governing Body may require or impose by resolution of the Town Governing Body, upon a determination by a majority of the members that:

 

a.         Adequate insurance or like surety is in place to handle any liability attaching to the Town's residents

 

b.         The fair/carnival/event is in the best interests of the Town of Washington residents and businesses

 

c.         No unreasonable imposition on business and residents of the area will result

 

d.         Adequate public services exist to serve the expected attendees, and

 

e.         Provisions are in place to handle clean up and replacement of any damaged Town property.

 

1-5-2.1                                     The Governing Body may renew, or alter the terms of, or cancel for good cause,

a previously issued Special Use Permit, even if such use is not presently allowed

in that district, but it may not expand such use unless the provisions

of this ordinance, as amended, allow such expansion.

 

1-5-3          SIGNS

 

a.                   No signs will be allowed with interior illumination of any sort whatsoever.

 

b.                  For a single commercial enterprise, the total area of all signs, to exclude service or directional signs, daily signs, and political signs, shall not exceed twenty-five square feet.

 

c.                   No sign shall be erected on the roof of any structure, nor may any sign protrude above the lower edge of a roof, except by Special Use Permit.  Signs that are placed on, project onto, or are suspended over a public right-of-way may be subject to the regulations of the Virginia Department of Transportation, and may not impede the passage of vehicular and/or pedestrian traffic.

 

d.                  All signs, other than political signs, and signs described in "e" below, shall be subject to the Town's Historic District Ordinance.

 

e.         All signs mandated by the Building Code or the American with Disabilities Act (ADA) or other Federal or State legislation, shall be exempt from these regulations to the extent mandated by law.  Signs related to parking or traffic control shall comply, where possible, with standards in use by the Virginia Department of Transportation.

 

1-5-4                      Properties currently and wholly owned by the Town of Washington shall be exempt from the provisions of this Ordinance for any use or purpose made of them by the Governing Body. Properties owned by the Town but let to any other governmental entity or private individual or group for a term of more than seven days shall comply with the provisions of this Ordinance.

 

1-5-5                       No external amplified sound or music shall be allowed in any district except by Special Use Permit.


ARTICLE II

 

SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS FOR NON-RESIDENTIAL USES

 

  2-1                 Where uses are permitted under the terms of this ordinance by right, by special use permit or otherwise, the following requirements shall be observed unless waived by the Governing Body.

 

2-1-1                       Public Utilities (other than existing overhead wires, poles, and guys, and other than those overhead wires and guys which are subsequently allowed by Special Use Permit), parking lots abutting residential uses, non-portable outside heating and air-conditioning equipment, fuel tanks, satellite dishes, and more than one inoperable motor vehicle on a lot must be planned to be screened, from view from any public highway or from adjoining property by natural vegetation or such other method. These plans should be approved by the Architectural Review Board.

 

2-1-2                      Prior to the issuance of any building permit for any non-residential facility, a detailed plan of development shall be submitted to the Administrator. Development plans shall be prepared to a scale of one-inch equals one hundred feet or larger, the sheet or sheets shall be no larger than 24 inches by 36 inches. Six clearly legible blue or black line copies of a development shall be submitted to the Administrator.

 

2-1-3          REQUIRED INFORMATION: Every such plan shall contain the following information:

 

a.         Location, type, and size of vehicular entrance to the site

 

b.         All off-street parking, loading spaces and walkways, indicating type of surfacing, size, angle or stalls, width of aisles and a specific schedule showing the number of parking spaces provided and the number required in accordance with Article 5

 

c.         Number of floors, floor area, height and location of each building and proposed general use for each building

 

d.         All existing and proposed water and sewer and drainage facilities, indicating all pipe sizes, types and grades

 

e.         In cases of new construction or exterior alteration of existing construction, proposed finished grading by contours supplemented where necessary by spot elevations

 

f.          All horizontal dimensions shown on the site plan shall be in feet and decimals of a foot to be closest to 1/10 of a foot

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2-1-4           PROCEDURE FOR PREPARATION, PROCESSING AND DECISION

 

a.         All development plans which are appropriately submitted and conform to standards and requirements set forth in this ordinance shall be approved by the Administrator after having been reviewed and recommended for approval, relative to:

 

1.         The location and design of vehicular entrances and exits in relation to streets giving access to the site and in relation to pedestrian traffic

 

2.         The concurrence of the Virginia Department Of Transportation for the location and design of the vehicular entrances and exits to and from state maintained streets and highways

 

3.         Location and adequacy of automobile parking areas

 

4.         Adequate provision for traffic circulation and control within the site and providing access to adjoining property

 

5.         Compliance with the requirements of this ordinance for setbacks and screening

 

6.                  Adequacy of drainage, water supply, fire protection and sanitary sewer facilities, and, when required, proper provision to minimize pollution of the streams, or air

 

7.         Compliance with any applicable established design criteria, construction standards and specifications for all improvements required by a duly adopted resolution by the Town governing body

 

b.         The Virginia Department of Health, or its agents, must approve the development plan for sewage disposal facilities.

 

c.         Any person aggrieved by any decision of the Administrator may, within 30 days of such decision appeal to and have a determination made by the Board of Zoning Appeals pursuant to Article VII this ordinance. Any applicant or adjoining property owner who is aggrieved by a decision of the Town Governing Body may appeal to the Circuit Court of Rappahannock County in accordance with Article VII of this ordinance.

 

d.         Approval of a development plan submitted under the provisions of this ordinance shall expire one year after the date of such approval unless building permits have been obtained for construction in accordance therewith. The applicant may be given a single one-year extension upon written request to the Administrator made within 90 days before the expiration of the approved development plan. The Administrator shall acknowledge the request and shall make a decision regarding the requested extension within 35 days after receipt of the request.  An extension may be given for good cause shown by the applicant.

 

e.         No permit shall be issued for any structure in any area covered by the development plan that is required under the provisions of this ordinance, except in conformity to such development plan that has been duly approved.

 

f.          Upon satisfactory completion of the installation of required improvements as shown on the approved development plan or a section thereof, the developer shall submit to the Administrator six certified copies of an "as built" development plan one week prior to anticipated occupancy of any building, for the review and approval for conformity with the approved development plan by the appropriate Town Officials as designated in this section.

 

2-1-5          REQUIRED IMPROVEMENTS - REVISIONS AND FEES

 

a.         Any development plan may be revised in the same manner as originally approved.

 

b.         Any requirement of this article may be waived by the Administrator or the Governing Body in specific cases where such requirement is found to be unreasonable and such waiver will not adversely affect the purposes of this article.

 

c.         The Town governing body, by resolution, may establish or change from time to time a schedule of fees for the examination and approval of development plans and the inspection of all required improvements included in such plans. Such fee shall be payable to the Treasurer of the Town of Washington and deposited to the credit of the general fund.

 

2-1-6           VIOLATIONS AND PENALTIES

 

Any person, whether as owner, lessee, principal, agent, employer or otherwise, who violates any of the provisions of this ordinance or permits any such violation or fails to comply with any of the requirements hereof or who erects any building or uses any building or any land prior to the approval of an "as built" development plan by the Administrator, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction thereof, shall be subject to a fine of not less than $10 nor more than $1,000.  If the violation is uncorrected at the time of conviction, the court shall order the violator to abate or remedy the violation in compliance with the zoning ordinance, within a time period established by the court.  Failure to reprove or abate a zoning violation within the specified time period shall constitute a separate misdemeanor offense punishable by a fine of not less than $10 nor more than $1,000, and any such failure during any succeeding ten-day period shall constitute a separate misdemeanor offense for each ten-day period punishable by a fine of not less than $10 nor more than $1,500 per Section 15.2-2286 A.5 of the 1950 Code of Virginia, as amended.

These penalties shall be in addition to the remedies set forth in Article VII.

 


                                                                 ARTICLE III

 

NON-CONFORMING USES

 

 

3-1       CONTINUATION

 

3-1-1                      If at the time of enactment of this ordinance in 1982 and the enactment of any amendments thereto any legal activity is being pursued, or any lot or structure is legally utilized in a manner or for a purpose which does not conform to the provisions of this ordinance, such manner of use or purpose may be continued as herein provided.

 

3-1-2                      If any change in title or possession, or renewal of a lease of any such lot or structure occurs, the use existing may be continued.

 

3-1-3                      If any non-conforming use or activity is discontinued for a period exceeding two years after the enactment of this ordinance, it shall be deemed abandoned and any subsequent use shall conform to the requirements of this ordinance.

 

3-2        REPAIRS AND MAINTENANCE

 

On any building devoted in whole or in part to any non-conforming use, work may be done on ordinary repairs or on repair or replacement of nonbearing walls, fixtures, wiring, or plumbing provided that there will be no increase in the cubic content of the structure as it existed at the time of passage or amendment of this ordinance.  Nothing in this ordinance shall be deemed to prevent the strengthening or restoring to a safe condition of any structure or part thereof declared to be unsafe by any official charged with protecting the public safety upon order of such official; however, no structural alterations may be made to a non-conforming building that will in any way make the setback of such building less than that required by the provisions of this ordinance.

 

3-3       CHANGES IN ZONING DISTRICT BOUNDARIES

 

Whenever the boundaries of a zoning district are changed, any uses of land or buildings that become non-conforming as a result of such change shall become subject to the provisions of this Article.

 

3-4       EXPANSION OR ENLARGEMENT

 

3-4-1                       A non-conforming structure to be extended or enlarged shall conform with the provisions of this ordinance except as qualified in 3-8, below.

 

3-4-2                        A non-conforming use may be extended throughout any part of a structure that was arranged or designed for such activity at the time of enactment of this ordinance.

 

 

 

 

3-5       RESTORATION OR REPLACEMENT

 

3-5-1                      A non-conforming building or a building in which a non-conforming use is conducted that is destroyed or damaged by any casualty may be restored, up to its original size, within two years after such destruction or damage, if approved by the appropriate Town authorities. In extenuating circumstances, the two-year period may be extended by Town Council.

 

3-6       NON-CONFORMING LOTS

 

            The BZA may consider granting a variance to these requirements only if adjacent lots are under separate ownership on the effective date of this ordinance, or the lots have been legally approved and recorded prior to 1986.

 

3-7       NON-CONFORMING STRUCTURES

 

            Structures which are non-conforming by reason of not meeting minimum yard requirements may be expanded in a minimum yard area where the addition encroaches on such yard a distance equal to or less than did the structure on the effective date of this ordinance.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  ARTICLE IV

 

MOBILE HOMES/TRAVEL TRAILERS/RECREATIONAL VEHICLES/TEMPORARY STRUCTURES

 

4-1                    It shall be unlawful for a mobile home to be stored, placed, or parked, on any property in the Town of Washington .

 

4-2                   Travel trailers and recreational vehicles not being used as dwellings for habitation may be stored or kept within the Town, so long as no more than one such travel trailer or recreational vehicle is stored or kept on a lot.

 

4-3                    It shall be unlawful for mobile homes, travel trailers, recreational vehicles, or temporary structures to be used as a dwelling, living quarters, storage facility, or place of business in the Town of Washington

 

 


                 ARTICLE V

 

GENERAL PROVISIONS

 

5-1       AREA, SETBACK, HEIGHT AND DENSITY REGULATIONS

 

            The minimum lot area setback & height requirements for permitted uses shall be:

 

                        VR                               VMU                           VS                               RR

 

Lot Area:           .5                                 .5                                 .5                                 1.8*

   (In acres):

 

*The Lot area for parcels in areas zoned RR may be reduced to 1.5 acres upon the provision of public water supplies.

 

Density:   No more than one dwelling per lot

 

Front Yard: The setbacks shall be 45' from the centerline of the road on Route 622, Route 626, Route 628, Route 522, and Route 211 unless reduced by Special Use Permit. On all other roads, the setback shall be 35' from the centerline of the road unless reduced by Special Use Permit.   In cases where a property is served by a private right-of-way, measurements shall be taken from the property line that constitutes the front property line.

 

Side Yard:         15'                               15'                               15'                               15'

 

Rear Yard:        30'                               30'                               30'                               30'

 

Height:              35'                               35'                               35'                               35'

 

 

5-2        ADDITIONAL YARD REGULATIONS

 

5-2-1                       On lots having double frontage, the building setback line shall apply to both frontages.

 

5-2-2                       Structures and sewage disposal systems shall be set back at least 50' from any river, stream, or flood plain.

 

5-2-3                       In all areas, setback for structures may be reduced to the setback line of structures on adjoining lots by the Governing Body, by the issuance of a Special Use Permit for a setback exception.

 

5-3       ADDITIONAL HEIGHT REGULATIONS

 

5-3-1                       Structures may be erected up to 45' in height by special use permit for a height exception.

5-3-2                      A public building, church, or library may be erected to a height of 45' from grade without recourse to a height exception, provided that required front, side and rear yards shall be increased one foot for each foot in height over 35'.

           

5-4       ACCESSORY STRUCTURES

 

5-4-1                       No accessory building of 100 square feet or more on the ground floor shall be within 15' of any side or rear lot line.

 

5-4-2                       No accessory building of more than one story shall be within 30' of any property line.

 

5-4-3                       All accessory buildings shall conform to the frontage setback set forth in this ordinance.

 

5-5       SPECIAL PROVISIONS FOR CORNER LOTS

 

5-5-1                       Of the two street sides of a corner lot, the front shall be deemed to be the shorter of the two sides fronting on streets.

 

5-5-2                       The minimum side yard facing the side street shall be 15' or more for both main and accessory buildings.

 

5-6        BUILDING PERMITS

 

5-6-1                       No structure that exceeds 150 square feet or more shall be located, constructed, reconstructed, altered, or enlarged without first having obtained a building permit from the Administrator.

 

5-6-2                       Applications for permits approved or denied by the Administrator may be appealed to the Town Board of Zoning Appeals.

 

5-6-3                       The Administrator may require that three copies of a scale drawing shall accompany each application for a Building Permit. The drawing shall show the size and shape of the parcel of land on which the proposed building is to be constructed, the nature of the use of the proposed building or land, and the location of such building or use with respect to the property lines of said parcel of land and to the right of way or any street or highway adjoining said parcel of land. Any other information, which the Administrator may deem necessary for proper consideration of the application, may be required. If the proposed building or use is in conformity with the provisions of this ordinance, the Administrator shall issue a permit to the applicant.

 

5-6-4                      In the event that the plans show that the proposed development of the property will violate any provisions of this ordinance, the Administrator shall require such revision of the plan as may be necessary to correct these conditions.

 

5-6-5                       No Building Permit shall be approved by the Administrator where individual water supply and/or sewage disposal systems are to be used until the suitability of the soil, drainage, and contour of each lot has been properly determined by the county health official or by a qualified registered engineer provided by the applicant, who shall certify in writing to the Governing Body that each such lot is suitable for such systems. The Administrator may require percolation tests and/or other methods of soil evaluation at the expense of the applicant to determine the suitability of the soil for sub-surface disposal of sewage.

 

5-7        CERTIFICATE OF OCCUPANCY

 

5-7-1                      Buildings structurally altered or erected may be used or changed in use only after the Building Inspector has issued a Certificate of Occupancy.

 

5-7-2                      No Certificate of Occupancy shall be issued for any building structurally altered or erected to be used as a dwelling, nor shall any Certificate of Occupancy be issued for any building erected on an undeveloped lot where human beings will be employed or will congregate, until such structure has been supplied or equipped with an approved sewage disposal system as will comply with the requirements of the Virginia Department of Health regulations and approved by the Rappahannock County Health Officer or the duly authorized representative.

 

5-8        MINIMUM OFF-STREET PARKING

 

There shall be provided at the time of construction of any main building or at the time any main building is enlarged or converted to non-residential use, minimum off-street parking space with adequate provision for entrance and exit by standard sized automobiles, as follows:

 

5-8-1                      There shall be provided either in a private garage or on the lot, space for the parking of one automobile for each dwelling unit in a new building, or each dwelling unit added in case of the enlargement of an existing building.

 

5-8-2                      Bed and Breakfasts and hotels shall provide on the lot parking space for one automobile for each room/unit of accommodation.

 

5-8-3                       For places of assembly, at least one parking space for every five fixed seats shall be provided in said area.

 

5-8-4                       Parking in connection with non-residential uses shall be located only on the lot where said non-residential use is located or on property not zoned Village Residential (VR) or Rural Residential (RR).

 

5-8-5                       For medical and dental clinics, at least ten parking spaces; three additional parking spaces shall be furnished for each doctor or dentist having offices in such clinic in excess of three doctors or dentists.

 

5-8-6                      For retail stores selling direct to the public one parking space shall be provided for each 250 square feet (or fraction thereof) of retail floor space in the building.

5-8-7                       Any other commercial building not listed above hereafter erected, converted, or structurally altered shall provide one parking space for each 250 square feet of business floor space in the building.

 

5-8-8       Parking requirements may be reduced or modified by Town Council by issuance of a special use permit.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ARTICLE VI

 

ISSUANCE OF SPECIAL USE PERMITS

 

6-1           POWERS OF THE GOVERNING BODY

 

The Town governing body reserves unto itself and shall have the following powers and duties in addition to its other powers granted in this ordinance, or elsewhere.

 

To hear and decide applications for such special use permits as may be authorized in this ordinance; the Governing Body may impose such conditions relating to the use for which a permit is granted as it may deem necessary in the public interest and may require a guarantee or bond to ensure that the conditions imposed are being and will continue to be complied with.

 

No such special use permit may be granted except after notice and hearing provided by Section 15.2-2204 of the 1950 Code of Virginia, as amended.

 

6-1-1           GENERAL STANDARDS

 

The Town governing body may issue a Special Use Permit if it finds that the use for which the permit is sought:

 

a.         Will not be hazardous or injurious to, or in conflict with, the predominant character of the neighborhood considering the size and location of the use, the nature and intensity of the operation involved, the site layout and access roads

 

b.         Will not adversely affect the health and safety of persons residing or working in the neighborhood of the proposed use

 

c.         Will not be detrimental to the public welfare or injurious to property or improvements in the neighborhood, or to the quiet enjoyment of property or improvements in the neighborhood

           

d.         Will be in accord with the provisions of the ordinance and the plan of use and development embodied therein, as well as in accord with such comprehensive plans or parts thereof from time to time adopted by the governing body

 

The Town Governing Body may require, as a condition of the issuance of any special permit there under, that it shall be periodically renewed, or the Governing Body may grant a temporary special permit, subject to adequate guarantees that the use covered will be terminated at the end of the period specified or of such extension thereof as may be granted by the Governing Body; provided, that any such renewal or extension shall be subject to the same procedure as specified in this section for the original issuance of the permit.

 

 

 

6-1-2               Additional Standards

 

All applications for Special Use Permits (those uses contained in Section 1-4-1 through 1-4-4 ) shall, in addition to the General Standards of the Ordinance contained in Section 6-1-1 , above, comply with the following additional standards:

 

            a.         Two Family Residences

 

1.                  Two family residences shall comply with the density requirements as set forth in

Section 5.1.

 

2.         Two family residences, wherever practicable, shall share parking, entrance, sewerage disposal, and related facilities.

 

  b.        Accessory Apartments

 

1.         Accessory apartments may be located in the main structure on a property.

 

2.         Accessory apartments may not be occupied by more than three persons.

 

3.         Adequate off-street parking shall be provided, and vehicular access shall be the same as that serving the main structure.

 

4.         Accessory apartments shall not exceed approximately 1000 square feet in area.

                                                                                                           

c.          More than One Dwelling on a Lot or Parcel

 

1.      The property and its dwellings shall conform to the density requirements of the                                of the ordinance as set forth in Section 5.1.

 

2.                  All proposed dwellings should conform to the yard requirements for main                                    structures as set forth in Section 5.1.

 

3.         All proposed structures should be located so as to have minimum impact on      

                        adjacent properties..

 

d.                     Setback Exception

 

1.         Any exception to the setback provision shall be in keeping with the character of construction in the area.

 

2.         Any increased bulk resulting from the exception to the setback requirement will not act to the detriment of neighboring properties.

 

  e.        Height Exception

 

1.         Any exception to the height provision shall be in keeping with the character of construction in the area.

 

2.         Any increased bulk resulting from the exception to the height requirement shall not act to the detriment of neighboring properties.

 

            f..         Multi-Family Dwelling

 

1.         Cooperative parking, entrance and loading area shall be provided.

 

2.         Accessory parking for additional vehicles (RVs, boats and trailers, etc.) shall be provided.

 

3.         Multi-family housing shall have the exterior appearance, as far as is practicable, of a single-family dwelling.

           

            f.          Retail Uses of Greater than 1000 square feet in Existing Retail Space

 

1.         Any expansion in size of the commercial use shall be in keeping with the character of the surrounding properties.

 

g.         Bed and Breakfast Establishments

 

1.         Use shall be limited to occupancy by no more than five rooms for let.

 

2.         Virginia Department of Health approvals shall be obtained and maintained throughout use.

 

3.         Such use shall have the exterior appearance of a single-family dwelling.

 

4.         Adequate vehicular parking shall be provided.

 

5.         Vehicular ingress and egress shall be reviewed and approved by the Virginia Department Of Transportation.

 

  h.          Agricultural Production, Packaging, Processing and Storage

 

1.         Any such activities, which involve the creation of any obnoxious smells, noises or airborne discharge, shall shield neighboring properties not zoned RR.

 

  j.         Wayside Stands

 

1.         Wayside stands shall contain no more than 800 square feet of floor or display area.

 

2.         Wayside stands shall not be open beyond the hours of daylight.

 

3.         Wayside stands shall provide adequate area for the ingress, egress and parking of patrons.

 

k.     Adaptive re-use of existing structures

 

1.         Adaptive re-uses shall be limited to those uses listed under section 1-4-3 , 1-4-4 , and 1-4-5 of this ordinance.

 

2.         No major addition is required to the structure, and the general exterior appearance of the structure shall be retained.

 

3.         All parking areas shall be effectively screened.

 

6-1-3           APPLICATIONS

           

An application for a Special Use Permit may be made by any property owner, owner of an easement, possessor of the right of entry under the power of eminent domain, tenant, contract purchaser, or any official, department, board or bureau of any government. A contract purchaser, tenant, or owner of an easement must file with the application a copy of the contract or some form of written statement with the endorsement of the application by the property owner. Such application shall be made to the Zoning Administrator in accordance with rules adopted by the Town Governing Body. The application and accompanying maps, plans or other information shall be transmitted promptly to the secretary of the Town Governing Body who shall place the matter on the agenda, give notice and advertise a public hearing thereon as provided in Section 15.2-2204 of the 1950 Code of Virginia, as amended.

 

6-1-4             REVOCATIONS

 

Unless a time limit is specified for a permit, the same shall be valid for an indefinite period of time but shall be revocable on the order of the Governing Body at any time on the failure of the owner or operator of the use covered by the permit to observe all requirements of law with respect to the maintenance and conduct of the use and all conditions in connection with the permit that were designated by the Governing Body. Before revoking any permit, however, the Governing Body shall give the holder at least 21 days written notice of the violation, delivered to the holder's last known address, or delivered to him or her personally, and the Governing Body shall publish notice of intent to revoke said permit in accordance with the provisions of Section 15.2-2204 of the 1950 Code of Virginia, as amended. The holder may appear at the date set to consider revocation of the permit and present evidence on his/her behalf, after hearing the evidence supporting revocation. The foregoing provisions shall not be deemed to preclude the use of any other remedy prescribed by law or by this ordinance with respect to violations of the provisions of this ordinance.

 

6-1-5           DUE DILIGENCES

 

Whenever a Special Use Permit is granted, the activity authorized thereby shall be established and any construction authorized thereby shall be diligently executed and shall be completed within such time as specified.  If not acted on within a period of one year, such special use permit shall automatically expire without notice, unless the permit is extended by Town Council due to conditions unforeseen at the time of the authorization.

 

 

 

ARTICLE VII

 

APPEALS AND VARIANCES

 

7-1       BOARDS OF ZONING APPEALS CREATED; MEMBERSHIP, ORGANIZATION, ETC.

 

Boards of zoning appeals to be created; membership, organization, etc. -

 

7-1-1                              The Town hereby establishes a board of zoning appeals, which shall consist of five residents of the Town, appointed by the circuit court. Their terms of office shall be for five years each except that original appointments shall be made for such terms that the term of one member shall expire each year.  The secretary of the board shall notify the court at least thirty days in advance of the expiration of any term of office, and shall also notify the court promptly if any vacancy occurs.  Appointments to fill vacancies shall be only for the unexpired portion of the term.  Members may be reappointed to succeed themselves.  Members of the board shall hold no other public office in the locality except that one may be a member of the local planning commission.  A member whose term expires shall continue to serve until his successor is appointed and qualifies. 

 

7-1-2                       The board shall elect from its own membership its officers who shall serve annual terms as such and may succeed themselves.  The board may elect as its secretary either one of its members or a qualified individual who is not a member of the board, excluding the alternate members. A secretary who is not a member of the board shall not be entitled to vote on matters before the board.  For the conduct of any hearing and the taking of any action, a quorum shall be not less than a majority of all the members of the board.  The board may make, alter and rescind rules and forms for its procedures, consistent with ordinances of the locality and general laws of the Commonwealth.  The board shall keep a full public record of its proceedings and shall submit a report of its activities to the governing body or bodies at least once each year.

 

7-2        POWERS AND DUTIES OF BOARDS OF ZONING APPEALS

 

Powers and duties of boards of zoning appeals. - Boards of zoning appeals shall have the following powers and duties:

 

7-2-1                              To hear and decide appeals from any order, requirement, decision or determination made by an administrative officer in the administration or enforcement of this article or of any ordinance adopted pursuant thereto.  The decision on such appeal shall be based on the board's judgment of whether the administrative officer was correct.  The board shall consider the purpose and intent of any applicable ordinances, laws and regulations in making its decision.

 

7-2-2                    To authorize upon appeal or original application in specific cases such variance as defined in Section 15.2-2201 of the 1950 Code of Virginia, as amended, from the terms of the ordinance as will not be contrary to the public interest, when, owing to special conditions a literal enforcement of the provisions will result in unnecessary hardship; provided that the spirit of the ordinance shall be observed and substantial justice done, as follows:

When a property owner can show that his property was acquired in good faith and where by reason of the exceptional narrowness, shallowness, size or shape of a specific piece of property at the time of the effective date of the ordinance, or where by reason of exceptional topographic conditions or other extraordinary situation or condition of the piece of property, or of the condition, situation, or development of property immediately adjacent thereto, the strict application of the terms of the ordinance would effectively prohibit or unreasonably restrict the utilization of the property or where the board is satisfied, upon the evidence heard by it, that the granting of the variance will alleviate a clearly demonstrable hardship approaching confiscation, as distinguished from a special privilege or convenience sought by the applicant, provided that all variances shall be in harmony with the intended spirit and purpose of the ordinance.

 

            No such variance shall be authorized by the board unless it finds:

 

a.                   That the strict application of the ordinance would produce undue hardship;

 

b.         That the hardship is not shared generally by other properties in the zoning district and the same vicinity; and

 

c.         That the authorization of the variance will not be of substantial detriment to adjacent property and that the character of the district will not be changed by the granting of the variance.

 

No variance shall be authorized except after notice and hearing as required by Section 15.2-2204 of the 1950 Code of Virginia, as amended.  However, when giving any required notice to the owners, their agents or the occupants of abutting property and property immediately across the street or road from the property affected, the board may give such notice by first-class mail rather than by registered or certified mail.

  No variance shall be authorized unless the board finds that the condition or situation of the property concerned is not of so general or recurring a nature as to make reasonably practicable the formulation of a general regulation to be adopted as an amendment to the ordinance.

                               In authorizing a variance the board may impose such conditions regarding the location, character and other features of the proposed structure or use as it may deem necessary in the public interest, and may require a guarantee or bond to ensure that the conditions imposed are being and will continue to be complied with.

 

7-2-3                      To hear and decide appeals from the decision of the zoning administrator after notice and hearing as provided by Section 15.2-2204 of the 1950 Code of Virginia, as amended.  However, when giving any required notice to the owners, their agents or the occupants of abutting property and property immediately across the street or road from the property affected, the board may give such notice by first-class mail rather than by registered or certified mail.

 

7-2-4                                To hear and decide applications for interpretation of the district map where there is any uncertainty as to the location of a district boundary.  After notice to the owners of the property affected by the question, and after public hearing with notice as required by Section 15.2-2204 of the 1950 Code of Virginia, as amended, the board may interpret the map in such way as to carry out the intent and purpose of the ordinance for the particular section or district in question.  However, when giving any required notice to the owners, their agents or the occupants of abutting property and property immediately across the street or road from the property affected, the board may give such notice by first-class mail rather than by registered or certified mail.  The board shall not have the power to change substantially the locations of district boundaries as established by ordinance.

 

7-2-5                              No provision of this section shall be construed as granting any board the power to rezone property or to base board decisions on the merits of the purpose and intent of local ordinances duly adopted by the governing body.

 

7-2-6                              To hear and decide applications for special exceptions as may be authorized in the ordinance.  The board may impose such conditions relating to the use for which a permit is granted as it may deem necessary in the public interest, including limiting the duration of a permit, and may require a guarantee or bond to ensure that the conditions imposed are being and will continue to be complied with.

 

7-2-7                              No special exception may be granted except after notice and hearing as provided by Section 15.2-2204 of the 1950 Code of Virginia, as amended.  However, when giving any required notice to the owners, their agents or the occupants of abutting property and property immediately across the street or road from the property affected, the board may give such notice by first-class mail rather than by registered or certified mail.  (Code 1950, Sections 15-831, 15-850, 15-968.9; 1950, p. 176; 1962, c. 407, Section 15.1-495; 1964, c. 535; 1972, c. 695; 1975, cc. 521, 641; 1987, c. 8; 1991, c. 513; 1996, c. 555; 1997, c. 587; 2000, c. 1050.)

 

7-3        APPLICATIONS FOR SPECIAL EXCEPTIONS AND VARIANCES

 

Applications for special exceptions and variances. - Applications for special exceptions and variances may be made by any property owner, tenant, government official, department, board or bureau.  Applications shall be made to the zoning administrator in accordance with rules adopted by the board.  The application and accompanying maps, plans or other information shall be transmitted promptly to the secretary of the board who shall place the matter on the docket to be acted upon by the board.  No special exceptions or variances shall be authorized except after notice and hearing as required by Section 15.2-2204 of the 1950 Code of Virginia, as amended. The applicant must be present at this hearing. The zoning administrator shall also transmit a copy of the application to the local planning commission, which may send a recommendation to the board or appear as a party at the hearing.  Any locality may provide by ordinance that substantially the same application will not be considered by the board within a specified period, not exceeding one year. (Code 1950, Sections 15-828 through 15-830, 15-832, 15-833, 15-850, 15-968.10; 1950, p.176; 1962, c.407, Section 15.1-496; 1966, c. 256; 1975, cc. 521, 641; 1989, c. 407; 1997, c. 587.)

 

7-4       APPEALS TO THE BOARD

 

7-4-1                                Appeals to the board. -  An appeal to the board may be taken by any person aggrieved or by any officer, department, board or bureau of the locality affected by any decision of the zoning administrator or from any order, requirement, decision or determination made by any other administrative officer in the administration or enforcement of this article or any ordinance adopted pursuant thereto.  Notwithstanding any charter provision to the contrary, any written notice of a zoning violation or a written order of the zoning administrator dated on or after July 1, 1993, shall include a statement informing the recipient that he may have a right to appeal the notice of a zoning violation or a written order within thirty days in accordance with this section, and that the decision shall be final and unappealable if not appealed within thirty days.  The appeal period shall not commence until the statement is given.  The appeal shall be taken within thirty days after the decision appealed from by filing with the zoning administrator, and with the board, a notice of appeal specifying the grounds thereof.  The zoning administrator shall forthwith transmit to the board all the papers constituting the record upon which the action appealed from was taken.

 

7-4-2                              An appeal shall stay all proceedings in furtherance of the action appealed from unless the zoning administrator certifies to the board that by reason of facts stated in the certificate a stay would in his opinion cause imminent peril to life or property, in which case proceedings shall not be stayed otherwise than by a restraining order granted by the board or by a court of record, on application and on notice to the zoning administrator and for good cause shown.

 

7-4-3                      In no event shall a written order, requirement, decision or determination made by the zoning administrator or other administrative officer be subject to change, modification or reversal by any zoning administrator or other administrative officer after sixty days have elapsed from the date of the written order, requirement, decision or determination where the person aggrieved has materially changed his position in good faith reliance on the action of the zoning administrator or other administrative officer unless it is proven that such written order, requirement, decision or determination was obtained through malfeasance of the zoning administrator or other administrative officer or through fraud.  The sixty-day limitation period shall not apply in any case where, with the concurrence of the attorney for the governing body, modification is required to correct clerical or other nondiscretionary errors. (1975, c.521, Section 15.1-496.1; 1983, c.12; 1993, c.780; 1995, c.424; 1997, c.587.)

 

7-5       PROCEDURE ON APPEAL

 

Procedure on appeal. - The board shall fix a reasonable time for the hearing of an application or appeal, give public notice thereof as well as due notice to the parties in interest and make its decision within ninety days of the filing of the application or appeal.  In exercising its powers the board may reverse or affirm, wholly or partly, or may modify, an order, requirement, decision or determination appealed from.  The concurring vote of a majority of the membership of the board shall be necessary to reverse any order, requirement, decision or determination of an administrative officer or to decide in favor of the applicant on any matter upon which it is required to pass under the ordinance or to effect any variance from the ordinance.  The board shall keep minutes of its proceedings and other official actions, which shall be filed in the office of the board and shall be public records.  The chairman of the board, or in his absence the acting chairman, may administer oaths and compel the attendance of witnesses.(1975, c.521, Section 15.1-496.2; 1983, c.444; 1986, c.483; 1997, c.587.)

 

7-6       PROCEEDINGS TO PREVENT CONSTRUCTION OF BUILDING IN VIOLATION OF ZONING ORDINANCE

 

Where a building permit has been issued and the construction of the building for which the permit was issued is subsequently sought to be prevented, restrained, corrected or abated as a violation of the zoning ordinance, by suit filed within fifteen days after the start of construction by a person who had no actual notice of the issuance of the permit, the court may hear and determine the issues raised in the litigation even though no appeal was taken from the decision of the administrative officer to the board of zoning appeals.(1975, c.521, Section 15.1-496.3; 1997, c.587.)

 

7-7    CERTIORI TO REVIEW DECISION OF BOARD

 

7-7-1                      Any person or persons jointly or severally aggrieved by any decision of the board of zoning appeals, or any taxpayer or any officer, department, board or bureau of the Town, may present to the circuit court of the county or city a petition specifying the grounds on which aggrieved within thirty days after the filing of the decision in the office of the Board.

 

7-7-2                       Upon the presentation of such petition, the court shall allow a writ of certiorari to review the decision of the board of zoning appeals and shall prescribe therein the time within which a return thereto must be made and served upon the Relator's attorney, which shall not be less than ten days and may be extended by the court.  The allowance of the writ shall not stay proceedings upon the decision appealed from, but the court may, on application, on notice to the board and on due cause shown, grant a restraining order.

 

7-7-3                      The board of zoning appeals shall not be required to return the original papers acted upon by it but it shall be sufficient to return certified or sworn copies thereof or of such portions thereof as may be called for by such writ. The return shall concisely set forth such other facts as may be pertinent and material to show the grounds of the decision appealed from and shall be verified.

 

7-7-4                      If, upon the hearing, it shall appear to the court that testimony is necessary for the proper disposition of the matter, it may take evidence or appoint a commissioner to take such evidence as it may direct and report the same to the court with his findings of fact and conclusions of law, which shall constitute a part of the proceedings upon which the determination of the court shall be made. The court may reverse or affirm, wholly or partly, or may modify the decision brought up for review.

 

7-7-5                       Costs shall not be allowed against the board, unless it shall appear to the court that it acted in bad faith or with malice in making the decision appealed from. In the event the decision of the board is affirmed and the court finds that the appeal was frivolous, the court may order the person or persons who requested the issuance of the writ of certiorari to pay the costs incurred in making a return of the record pursuant to the writ of certiorari.

 

7-8       DUE DILIGENCES TO PURSUE VARIANCE

 

Whenever a variance is authorized the board, as the activity authorized thereby shall be established, and any construction authorized thereby shall be diligently executed and shall be completed, within such time as the Board may have specified unless an extension shall be granted by the Board, because of the occurrence of conditions unforeseen at the time of the authorizing of such variance. If not so acted on and completed within a period of two years, unless the same is extended as aforesaid, such variance shall automatically expire without notice.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ARTICLE VIII

 

VIOLATION AND PENALTY

 

8-1                    All departments, officials, and public employees of the Town of Washington , which are vested with the duty or authority to issue permits or licenses, shall conform to the provisions of this ordinance. They shall only issue permits that comply with the provisions of this ordinance and have been found to be in compliance with the Comprehensive Plan. 

 

8-2                    Any violation or attempted violation of this ordinance or any provision thereof may be restrained, corrected, or abated as the case may be by injunction or other appropriate proceeding.  The Zoning Administrator shall have all necessary authority on behalf of the governing body to administer and enforce the zoning ordinance, including a written order for remediation of any condition found in violation of the ordinance, and the bringing of legal action to insure compliance with the ordinance, including injunction, abatement, or other appropriate action or proceeding.

 

8-3                    There is hereby established a schedule of civil penalties for violation of the provisions of this ordinance. No penalty imposed here under shall preclude action by the Zoning Administrator under the authority given in Section 15.2 - 2286 or Section 15.2 - 2208 of the 1950 Code of Virginia, as amended.

 

  8-3-1                      The penalty for any one violation of the zoning ordinance shall be $150, and each day during which the violation is found to have existed shall constitute a separate offense. However, in no event shall specified violations arising from the same operative set of facts be charged more frequently than once in any ten-day period, and in no event shall a series of specified violations arising from the same operative set of facts result in civil penalties which exceed a total of $3,000. Designation of a particular zoning ordinance violation for a civil penalty pursuant to this section shall be in lieu of criminal sanctions, and except for any violation resulting in injury to any person or persons, such designation shall preclude the prosecution of a violation as a criminal misdemeanor.

 

8-3-2                      Any person summoned for a violation of the Zoning Ordinance may make an appearance in person or in writing by mail to the Treasurer of the town prior to the date fixed for trial in court. Any person so appearing may enter a waiver of trial, admit liability, and pay the civil penalty established for the offense charged. Such persons shall be informed of their right to stand trial and that a signature to an admission of liability will have the same force and effect as a judgment of the court.

 

If a person charged with a scheduled violation does not elect to enter a waiver of trial and admit liability, the violation shall be tried in the general district court in the same manner and with the same right of appeal as provided for by law. In any trial for a scheduled violation authorized by this section, it shall be the burden of the town to show the liability of the violator by a preponderance of the evidence. An admission of liability or finding of liability shall not be a criminal conviction for any purpose.

 

ARTICLE IX

 

AMENDMENTS

 

9-1                   The regulations, restrictions, and boundaries established in this ordinance may, from time to time, be amended, supplemented, changed, modified, or repealed by a favorable majority of votes from the governing body, provided:

 

9-1-1                       Any such amendments are initiated:

 

a.         By resolution of the governing body

 

b.                  By motion of the local commission

 

c.                   By petition of the owner; contract owner with the owner's written consent; or the owner's agent of the property, which is the subject of the proposed Zoning amendment, addressed to the governing body or the local commission, who shall forward such petition to the governing body

 

9-1-2                               Applications for change of zoning district boundaries shall be made by the owner, contract owner or option holder of the property on forms prescribed by the Zoning Administrator.  They shall be accompanied by a certified surveyor's plat and a certified or cashier's check in the amount set in a fee schedule adopted by the Town Governing Body. When the applications are deemed to be complete by the Zoning Administrator, the application shall be referred to the planning commission and heard by it in a legally advertised public hearing, not less than five days no more than 21 days after final publication of notice. The proposed rezoning shall be advertised by publication once a week for two successive weeks in a newspaper published in or having general circulation in Rappahannock County. Such notice shall specify the time and place of the hearing at which persons affected may appear and present their views.

 

9-1-3                 Advertisement under this article need not be in full but may be by reference. Every such advertisement shall contain a reference to the place within the Town where copies of the proposed amendments, plans or ordinances may be examined.

 

9-2                   Any comprehensive plan, or amendment thereto, or amendment to this ordinance shall originate at or be referred to, the planning commission by the governing body and be heard by it in a legally advertised public hearing, not less than five days nor more than 21 days after final publication of notice, or as required by Section 15.2 - 2204 of the 1950 Code of Virginia, as amended, which ever provides more notice.

 

9-3                   After the public hearing before the Planning Commission, the Commission shall submit its recommendation to the governing body within 90 days unless a shorter period  is   prescribed by the governing body unless the proposed amendment has been withdrawn by the applicant. No application for a change of zoning district boundaries, comprehensive plan or amendment thereto, or other amendment to this ordinance shall be acted upon by the governing body until advertised by publication once a week for two successive weeks in a newspaper published or having general circulation in Rappahannock County. Such notice shall specify the time and place of a public hearing before the governing body at which persons affected may appear and present their views, not less than five days nor more than 21 days after final publication, or as required by Section 15.2 - 2204 of the 1950 Code of Virginia, as amended.

 

9-4                   In cases where an applicant has requested an amendment to the zoning ordinance and/or the zoning map, such request shall be acted upon by the governing body and any decision made within 12 months unless the applicant requests or consents to action beyond this period or unless the applicant withdraws his request. In the event of and upon such withdrawal, processing of the request shall cease without further action required by this ordinance.

 

9-5                   Before approving any Zoning Ordinance or Amendment, the governing body shall hold at least one public hearing thereon, pursuant to public notice as required by Section 15.2 - 2204 of the 1950 Code of Virginia, as amended, after which the governing body may make appropriate changes or corrections in the ordinance or amendment. However, no land may be zoned to a more intensive use classification than was contained in the public notice without an additional public hearing after notice required by Section 15.2 - 2204 of the 1950 Code of Virginia, as amended.

 

9-6              The requirements for advertising set out in this article shall be construed and interpreted to conform to the requirements of Section 15.2 - 2204 of the 1950 Code of Virginia, as amended.

 

9.7                A petition for amendment which is substantially similar to another petition for amendment shall  

not be reconsidered within one year of the vote on or the withdrawal of the earlier petition.

 

 

 

 

 

 

       

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

           ARTICLE X

 

             ADMINISTRATION AND INTERPRETATION

 

10-1                 This ordinance shall be enforced by the Zoning Administrator who shall be appointed by the Governing Body. The Zoning Administrator shall serve at the pleasure of the Governing Body.  Compensation for such shall be fixed by resolution of the governing body.  The Zoning Administrator of Rappahannock County may also serve as Zoning Administrator for the Town of Washington, Virginia.

 

10-2                 Nothing contained herein shall require any change in the plans or construction of any building or structure for which a permit was granted prior to the effective date of this ordinance. However, such construction must commence within 30 days after this ordinance becomes effective. If construction is discontinued for a period of six months or more, further construction shall be in conformity with the provisions of this ordinance for the district in which the construction is located.

 

10-3                 Unless district boundary lines are fixed by dimensions or otherwise clearly shown or described, and where uncertainty exists with respect to the boundaries of any of the aforesaid districts as shown on the zoning map, the following rules shall apply:

 

  10-3-1                  Where district boundaries are indicated as approximately following or being at right angles to the center lines of street, highways, or alleys, such center lines or lines at right angles to such center lines shall be construed to be boundaries.

 

  10-3-2                   Where a district boundary is indicated to follow a river, creek or branch or other body of water, said boundaries shall be construed to follow the centerline at low water.

 

  10-3-3                  If no distance, angle, curvature description, or other means is given to determine a boundary line accurately and the foregoing provisions do not apply, the same shall be determined by the use of the scale shown on said zoning map. In case of subsequent dispute, the matter shall be referred to the Governing Body that shall determine the boundary.

 


  ARTICLE XI

 

         APPLICATION

 

11-1     EFFECTIVE DATE

 

The effective date of this ordinance shall be from and after its passage and legal application of its provisions shall be in force thereafter until repealed. This zoning ordinance of the Town of Washington, Virginia, shall be effective at on the 26th day of August 2003.

 

11-2          SEVERABILITY

 

Should any section or provision of this ordinance be decided by the courts to be unconstitutional or invalid or unenforceable for any reason, such decision shall not affect the validity of the ordinance as a whole, or any part thereof other than the part so held to be unconstitutional or invalid or unenforceable.

 

11-3          CONFLICTING ORDINANCES

 

All conflicting ordinances or parts thereof, which are inconsistent with the provisions of this ordinance, are hereby repealed.

 

11-4     FLOOD PLAIN ORDINANCE

 

The Town of Washington Flood Plain Ordinance , attached hereto has also been adopted this date and shall be a part of this Ordinance.

 

11-5     ZONING CATEGORIES

 

          The map of the applicable zoning categories and boundaries that was a part of the former zoning ordinance, but as amended by adoption of this zoning ordinance, shall remain in full force and effect with the passage of this Ordinance.

 

11-6     CERTIFIED COPY

 

A certified copy of the foregoing zoning ordinance of the Town of Washington, Virginia, shall be filed in the office of the Zoning Administrator, in the office of the Clerk of the Circuit Court of Rappahannock County, Virginia, and recorded in the minute book of the Town Governing Body. A recorded vote taken on the foregoing ordinance was as follows:

 

11-7 AMENDMENTS AND RECODIFICATION

 

Amendments to this Zoning Ordinance have been approved by the Town Governing Body to become effective on August 25, 2003  and said amendments have been incorporated into this ordinance and this ordinance recodified by resolution of the Town Governing Body on September 8, 1993.

 

The Historic District Ordinance for the Town of Washington, Virginia, and the Subdivision Ordinance for the Town of Washington, Virginia, in effect on August 25, 2003 are incorporated by reference into this recodification, and shall remain in effect, as amended, from time to time by the Town Governing Body of Washington, Virginia.

 

                                                                                                MAYOR: _____________________

                                                                                                                                                               The Honorable Eugene Leggett

 

                                                                                                DATE: _______________________

 

 

                                                                                                ATTEST: _____________________

                                                                                                                                                            Clerk of the Town Council

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

FLOOD PLAIN ORDINANCE

 

            An ordinance amending the Zoning Ordinance of the Town of Washington, Virginia, by establishing flood plain districts, by requiring the issuance of permits for development, and by providing factors and conditions for variances to the terms of the ordinances.

 

            Be it enacted and ordained by the Town Council, Washington , Virginia as follows:

 

ARTICLE   I

 

GENERAL PROVISIONS

 

1-1       PURPOSE

 

The purpose of these provisions is to prevent the loss of life and property, the creation of health and safety hazards, the disruption of commerce and governmental services, the extraordinary and unnecessary expenditure of public funds for flood protection and relief, and the impairment of the tax base by:

 

1-1-1                       Regulating uses, activities, and development which, alone or in combination with other existing or future uses, activities and development, will cause unacceptable increases in flood heights, velocities and frequencies

 

1-1-2                       Restricting or prohibiting certain uses, activities, and development from locating within districts subject to flooding

 

1-1-3                       Requiring all those uses, activities and developments that do occur in flood prone districts to be protected against flooding and flood damage

 

1-1-4                       Protecting individuals from buying land and structures that are unsuited for the intended purposes because of flood hazards

 

1-2        APPLICABILITY

 

                        These provisions shall, apply to all lands within the jurisdiction of the Town of Washington, Virginia and identified as being in the 100-year floodplain by the Federal Insurance Administration.

 

1-3       COMPLIANCE AND LIABILITY

 

1-3-1                      No land shall hereafter be developed, and no structure shall be located, constructed, reconstructed, enlarged, or structurally altered except in full compliance with the terms and provisions of this ordinance and any other applicable ordinances and regulations which apply to uses within the jurisdiction of this ordinance.

 

1-3-2                       The degree of flood protection sought by the provisions of this ordinance is considered reasonable for the regulatory purposes and is based on acceptable engineering methods of study. Larger floods may occur on occasion. Man made or natural causes, such as ice jams and bridge openings restricted by debris, may increase flood heights. This Ordinance does not imply that districts outside the flood plain district, or that land uses permitted within such district will be free from flooding or flood damages.

 

1-3-3                       This ordinance shall not create liability on the part of the Town of Washington or any officer or employee thereof for any flood damages that result from reliance on this ordinance or any administrative decision lawfully made there under.

 

1-4        ABROGATION AND GREATER RESTRICTIONS

 

                        This ordinance supersedes any ordinance currently in effect in flood prone districts. However, any underlying ordinance shall remain in full force and effect to the extent that its provisions are more restrictive than this ordinance.

 

1-5        SEVERABILITY

 

                        If any section, subsection, paragraph, sentence, clause or phrase of this ordinance shall be declared invalid for any reason whatever, such decision shall not affect the remaining portions of this ordinance. The remaining portions shall remain in full force and effect; and for this purpose, the provisions of this ordinance are hereby declared to be severable.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ARTICLE II

 

DEFINITIONS

 

2-1       DEFINITIONS:

 

            BASE FLOOD/ ONE HUNDRED YEAR FLOOD

A flood that, on the average, is likely to occur once every 100 years (i.e., that has 1% chance of occurring each year, although the flood may occur any year)

 

            BASE FLOOD ELEVATION (BFE)

The Federal Emergency Management Agency designated 100-year water surface elevation

 

            BOARD OF ZONING APPEALS

The board appointed to review appeals made by individuals with regard to decisions of the Zoning Administrator in the interpretation of this ordinance

 

            DEVELOPMENT

Any man made change to improved or unimproved real estate, including, but not limited to, buildings or other structures, mining, dredging, filling, grading, paving, excavation, or drilling operations or storage of equipment or materials

 

            FLOODPLAIN

Any land area susceptible to being inundated by water from any source

 

            FLOODWAY

The channel of a river or other watercourse and the adjacent land areas that must be reserved in order to discharge the base flood without cumulatively increasing the water surface elevation more than a designated height

 

            FREEBOARD

A factor of safety usually expressed in feet above a flood level for purposes of flood plain management

 

           

 

                       

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ARTICLE III

 

ESTABLISHMENT OF ZONING DISTRICTS

 

3-1        DESCRIPTION OF DISTRICT

 

3-1-1                   BASIS OF DISTRICT

 

The Flood Plain District shall include areas subject to inundation by waters of the 100-year flood. The basis for the Approximated Flood Plain District shall be the Flood Hazard Boundary Map prepared by the Department of Housing and Urban Development dated February 4, 1977 , and Panel 10B, Rappahannock County , dated August 24, 1984 , prepared by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, as amended.

 

The Approximated Flood Plain District shall be that flood plain for which no detailed flood profiles or elevations are provided but where a 100-year flood plain boundary has been approximated. Such areas are shown as Zone A on the Flood Insurance Rate Map/Flood Hazard Boundary Map. For these areas the 100-year flood elevations and flood way information from federal state, and other acceptable sources shall be used, when available. Where the specific 100-year flood elevation cannot be determined for this area using other sources of data, such as the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Flood Plain Information Reports, U.S. Geological Survey Flood Prone Quadrangles, etc. then the applicant for the proposed use, development and/or activity shall determine this elevation in accordance with hydrologic and hydraulic engineering techniques.  Only professional engineers, or others of demonstrated qualifications, shall undertake hydrologic and hydraulic analyses and shall certify that the technical methods used correctly reflect currently accepted technical concepts.  The Town of Washington shall submit studies analyses, computations, etc. in sufficient detail to allow a thorough review.

 

3-1-2           OVERLAY CONCEPT

 

a.         The Flood Plain District described above shall be overlays to the existing area as shown on the Official Zoning Ordinance Map, and as such, the provisions for the Flood Plain District shall serve as a supplement to the underlying district provisions.

 

b.         In the event of a conflict between provisions of the Flood Plain Ordinance and those of any other ordinance, the more restrictive ordinance shall apply.

 

3-2        OFFICIAL ZONING MAP

 

The boundaries of the Flood Plain Districts are established as shown on the Flood Hazard Boundary Map/Flood Insurance Rate Map which is declared to be a part of this ordinance and which shall be kept on file at the Town of Washington offices.

 

 

3-3       DISTRICT BOUNDARY CHANGES

 

The Town Council may revise the delineation of any flood plain district where natural or man-made changes have occurred and/or where more detailed studies have been conducted or undertaken by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers or other qualified Agency, or an individual documents the need for such change. However, prior to any such change, approval must be obtained from the Federal Insurance Administration.

 

3-4        INTERPRETATION OF DISTRICT BOUNDARIES

 

The Zoning Administrator shall make initial interpretations of the boundaries of the Flood Plain District. Should a dispute arise concerning the boundaries of any of the Districts, the Board of Zoning Appeals shall make the necessary determination. The person questioning or contesting the location of the District Boundary shall be given a reasonable opportunity to present his/her case to the Board and to submit her/his own technical evidence if so desired.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ARTICLE IV

 

DISTRICT PROVISIONS

 

4-1        GENERAL PROVISIONS

 

4-1-1           PERMIT REQUIREMENT

 

All uses, activities, and developments occurring within any Flood Plain District shall be undertaken only upon issuance of a Special Use Permit.  Such development shall be undertaken only in strict compliance with the provisions of this ordinance and with all other applicable codes and ordinances, such as the Virginia Uniform Statewide Building Code and the Town of Washington Subdivision Regulations .  Prior to the issuance of any such permit, the Zoning Administrator shall require all applications to include compliance with all applicable state and federal laws.  Under no circumstances shall any use, activity, and/or development adversely affect the capacity of the channels or floodway of any watercourse, drainage ditch, or any other drainage facility or system.

 

4-1-2           ALTERATION OR RELOCATION OF WATERCOURSE

 

Prior to any proposed alteration or relocation of any channels or of any watercourse, stream, etc., within this jurisdiction a permit should be obtained from the U.S. Corps of Engineers, the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality, and the Virginia Marine Resources Commission (a joint permit application is available from any of these organizations). Further notification of the proposal should be given by the applicant to all affected adjacent jurisdictions, the Division of Soil and Water Conservation (Department of Conservation and Recreation), and the Federal Insurance Administration.

 

4-1-3           DRAINAGE FACILITIES

 

Storm drainage facilities shall be designed to convey the flow of storm water runoff in a safe and efficient manner.  The system shall insure proper drainage along streets and provide positive drainage of excess runoff onto adjacent properties.

 

4-1-4           SITE PLANS AND PERMIT APPLICATIONS

 

All applications for development in the Flood Plain District and all building permits issued for the floodplain shall incorporate the following information:

           

a.         For structures to be elevated, the elevation of the lowest floor (including basement)

 

b.         For structures to be flood proofed (non-residential only), the elevation to which the structure will be flood proofed

 

c.         The elevation of the 100-year flood

 

d.         Topographic information showing existing and proposed ground elevation

 

4-1-5           RECREATIONAL VEHICLE

 

Recreational Vehicles placed on sites shall either be on site for the fewer than 180 consecutive days, be fully licensed and ready for highway use; or meet permit requirements for placement and the elevation anchoring requirements for manufactured homes in paragraph 4.1.D above.

 

A recreational vehicle is ready for highway use if it is on its wheels or jacking system, is attached to the site only by quick disconnect type utilities and security devices, and has no permanent attached additions.

 

4-2        APPROXIMATED FLOODPLAIN DISTRICT

 

In the Approximated Flood Plain District, the development and/or use of land shall be permitted in accordance with the regulations of the underlying district provided that all such uses, activities, and/or development shall be undertaken in strict compliance with the flood proofing and related provisions contained in the Virginia Uniform Statewide Building Code and all other applicable codes and ordinances. The applicant shall also delineate a floodway area based on the requirement that all existing and future development not increase the 100-year flood elevation more than one foot at any one point. The engineering principle - "equal reduction of conveyances" - shall be used to make the determination of increased flood heights.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ARTICLE V

 

VARIANCES:  FACTORS TO BE CONSIDERED

 

5-1                   In passing upon applications for Variances, the Board of Appeals shall satisfy all relevant factors and procedures specified in other sections of the Zoning Ordinance and, in addition, consider the following factors:

 

5-1-1                       The danger to life and property due to increased flood heights or velocities caused by encroachments; no variance shall be granted for any proposed use, development or activity within any Flood Way District that will cause any increase in the 100-year flood elevation

 

5-1-2                       The danger that materials may be swept on to other lands or downstream to the injury of others

 

5-1-3                       The proposed water supply systems for sanitation and the ability of these systems to prevent disease, contamination, and unsanitary conditions

 

5-1-4                       The susceptibility of the proposed facility and its contents to flood damage and the effect of such damage on the individual owners

 

5-1-5                       The importance of the services provided by the proposed facility to the community

 

5-1-6                       The requirements of the facility for a waterfront location

 

5-1-7                       The availability of alternative locations not subject to flooding for the proposed use

 

5-1-8                       The compatibility of the proposed use with the existing development and development anticipated in the foreseeable future

 

5-1-9                       The relationship of the proposed use to the comprehensive plan and Flood Plain Management program for the area

 

5-1-10                     The safety of access by ordinary and emergency vehicles to the property in time of flood

 

5-1-11                     The expected heights, velocity, duration, rate of rise, and sediment transport of the floodwaters expected at the site

 

5-1-12                     The repair or rehabilitation of historic structures upon a determination that the proposed repair or rehabilitation will not preclude the structure's continued designation as an historic structure, and the variance is the minimum necessary to preserve the historic character and design of the structure

5-1-13                     Such other factors which are relevant to the purpose of this ordinance

 

5-2                   The Board of Zoning Appeals may refer any application and accompanying documentation pertaining to any request for a variance to any engineer or other qualified person or agency for technical assistance in evaluating the proposed project.

 

5-3                   Variances shall be issued only after the Board of Zoning Appeals has determined that the granting of such will not result in unacceptable or prohibited increase in flood heights; additional threats to public safety; or extraordinary public expense. It will not create nuisances, cause fraud or victimization of the public, or conflict with local laws or ordinances. Variances shall be issued only after the Board of Zoning Appeals has determined that the variance will be the minimum required to provide relief from hardship to the applicant.

 

5-4                   The Board of Zoning Appeals shall notify the applicant for a variance in writing.   If the issuance of a variance to construct a structure below the 100-year flood plain elevation increases the risks to life and property, and will result in increased premium rates for flood insurance.

 

5-5                   A record shall be maintained of the above notification as well as all variance actions including justification for the issuance of the variances. Any variances that are issued shall be noted in the annual or biennial report submitted to the Federal Insurance Administrator.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ARTICLE VI

 

EXISTING STRUCTURES IN FLOOD PLAIN DISTRICTS

 

6-1                   A structure or use of a structure or premises which lawfully existed before the enactment of these provisions, but which is not in conformity with these provisions, may be continued subject to the following conditions:

 

6-1-1                       Existing structures in the Flood Way District shall not be expanded, or improved or enlarged unless it has been demonstrated through hydrologic and hydraulic analyses performed in accordance with standard engineering practice that the proposed expansion would not result in any increase in the 100-year flood elevation

 

6-1-2                       Any modifications, alterations, repair, reconstruction, or improvement of any kind to a structure and/or use located in any flood plain area should use the best available technologies and should be undertaken only in full compliance with the provisions of this ordinance and the Virginia Uniform Statewide Building Code.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ARTICLE VII

 

ENACTMENT

 

ENACTED AND ORDAINED THIS 25th day of August 2003 This Ordinance shall become effective upon passage.

 

 

                                                                                                MAYOR: _________________________

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      The Honorable Eugene Leggett

 

                                                                                                DATE:    _________________________

 

 

                                                                                                ATTEST:   ________________________

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Clerk of the Town Council