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Land Development Code - City of Hudson, Ohio

Chapter 1204    General Review Standards

Section 1204.01    Code Amendments

All applications for text or zoning map amendments shall be reviewed by the PC and City Council
for compliance with the following standards:

  1. The site-specific development plan, which the proposed amendment to this Code
    would allow, is compatible and consistent with the policies and intent of the
    Comprehensive Plan and with existing growth and development patterns in the city;

  2. The site-specific development plan complies with all applicable standards for review
    of planned developments as set forth in Section 1204.02 below;

  3. The site-specific development plan complies with all applicable requirements set
    forth in Chapter 1207, "Zoning Development and Site Plan Standards," of this Code,
    except to the extent modifications, variances, or waivers have been expressly
    allowed;

  4. The site-specific development plan would not have the potential to reduce the level
    of ecological integrity from the existing level to a lesser level as shown on any of
    the individual metrics or the undeveloped composite set forth in Appendix B to this
    Code;

  5. The City shall have the ability to provide adequate services, facilities, or programs
    that might be required if the application were approved; and

  6. The amendment is necessary to address changed or changing social values, new
    planning concepts, or other social or economic conditions in the areas affected.

Section 1204.02    Planned Developments

  1. Purpose
    Within specified zone districts, planned developments are intended to encourage
    flexibility, innovation, and creativity in site and development design by allowing the
    mixing of permitted uses and/or modification or variation from otherwise applicable
    zone district and development standards. Planned developments containing only
    residential uses are permitted in Districts 1 and 3, planned developments mixing
    residential and commercial uses are allowed in District 5 (the Village Core).
    Commercial planned developments are allowed in Districts 5, 6 (office only), 8, and
    10, while industrial planned developments are permitted only in Districts 6 and 8. In
    return for maximum flexibility in site design and development, planned
    developments are expected to deliver exceptional quality products that preserve
    critical environmental resources, provide above-average open space amenities,
    incorporate creative design in the layout of buildings, open space, and circulation,
    assure compatibility with surrounding land uses and neighborhood character, and
    provide greater efficiency in the layout and provision of roads, utilities, and other
    infrastructure.

  2. Standards for Review of a Preliminary PD Plan
    An application for approval of a Preliminary PD Plan, together with submitted plans
    and reports, shall be reviewed for their conformance with the following standards:
    1. The proposed PD shall be consistent with and implement the planning goals,
      policies, and objectives as contained in this Code and in the Comprehensive
      Plan;

    2. The proposed PD shall contain uses that are expressly permitted either byright
      or as conditional uses in the zone district in which the PD is located or
      as modified according to (b)(3) below, but such uses may be mixed within
      the planned development or within the same structure located in the PD;

    3. The proposed PD shall comply with the density or lot coverage ratio
      requirements set forth for the zone district in which the PD is located, except
      to the extent that a bonus has been expressly allowed pursuant to subsection
      (c) below;

    4. The proposed PD shall comply with the subdivision development and design
      standards as set forth in Chapter 1208 of this Code, except to the extent
      modifications, variances, or waivers have been expressly allowed pursuant to
      paragraph (7) below;

    5. Adverse impacts on adjacent properties, including but not limited to traffic,
      noise, and visual impacts, shall be mitigated to the maximum extent feasible;

    6. The planned development shall be integrated with adjacent development
      through street connections, sidewalks, trails, and similar features;

    7. All district, development, and subdivision standards set forth in Chapters
      1205, 1207 (such as lot size, floor area ratio, structure height, etc.), and 1208,
      except those specified in subsection (b)(8) below, may be modified or varied
      upon a finding that the proposed PD incorporates creative site design such
      that it represents an improvement in quality over what could have been
      accomplished through strict application of the otherwise applicable district or
      development standards, including but not limited to improvements in open
      space provision and access; environmental protection; tree/vegetation
      preservation; efficient provision of streets, roads, and other utilities and
      services; or choice of living and housing environments;

    8. The proposed PD shall comply with the following requirements, which shall
      not be modified or varied except as expressly set forth below or as permitted
      by Section 1203.08, "Minor Modifications":
      1. Minimum Area Requirement. All Planned Developments shall have
        a minimum size of 5 acres.
      2. Setbacks from Adjoining Residential Uses. All Planned
        Developments shall comply with any applicable zone district
        standards that require minimum setbacks from adjoining residential
        uses or properties.
      3. Transportation/Circulation/Pedestrian Linkage. All Planned
        Developments shall comply with the transportation, circulation, and
        pedestrian linkage standards set forth in Section 1207.13 of this
        Code, and such provisions shall not be modified or varied in any way
        unless adequate compensating mitigation measures are included in
        the PD plan.
      4. Adequate Public Facilities. All Planned Developments shall comply
        with the adequate public facilities standards set forth in Section
        1207.11 of this Code.
      5. Environmental Protection Standards. All Planned Developments
        shall comply with the provisions set forth in the following sections
        and such provisions shall not be modified or varied in any way unless
        compensating mitigation measures are included in the PD plan:
        1. Section 1207.03, "Wetlands/Stream Corridor Protection."
        2. Section 1207.07, "Stormwater Management/Drainage/Erosion
          Control."
        3. Section 1207.02, "Tree and Vegetation Protection."
        4. Section 1207.10, "Performance Standards."
      6. Architectural and Design Standards. All Planned Developments shall
        comply with the city's architectural and design standards, including
        but not limited to industrial design standards.
      7. Minimum Open Space Requirements. At a minimum, a Planned
        Development shall set aside the following amounts of land area as
        open space for either private, public, or combined private and public
        use:
        1. Industrial or Business Park Planned Developments: 30% of
          the site's total gross area.
        2. Other Commercial Planned Developments: 40% of the site's
          total gross area, except in District 5 where underlying zone
          district requirements shall control.
        3. Mixed-Use Planned Developments: See the underlying
          District 5 zone district requirements.

  3. Density Bonuses
    Upon satisfaction of all applicable standards and requirements, and at the City's sole
    discretion, bonuses in density, floor area maximum or floor-area-to-lot-area ratios of
    no greater than twenty-five (25) percent may be granted to a proposed PD based
    upon incorporation within the PD of any of the following:
    1. Landscaping in excess of the minimum requirements set forth in this Code;

    2. Preservation of historical structures;

    3. Provision of specified public benefits/amenities (e.g., a day care center or
      community center);

    4. Dedication of permanent open space, including trails or trail access, beyond
      what would be roughly proportional to the demand for such open space or
      trails/trail access generated by the proposed PD;

    5. Preservation of critical and sensitive environmental areas in excess of the
      minimum requirements set forth in this Code, including preservation of key
      wetlands and significant stands, sizes, or unusual species of trees; or

    6. Other exceptional site and/or building designs as determined by the PC.

  4. Standards for Review for a Final PD Plan.
    A Final PD Plan application, together with all submitted plans and reports, shall be
    reviewed and evaluated to determine their compliance with the following standard:
    1. The Final PD Plan conforms in all respects with the approved preliminary PD
      plan and incorporates all recommended changes, modifications, and
      conditions attached to approval of the preliminary plan.

Section 1204.03    Variances

Variances from the terms of this Code shall not be granted by the BZBA unless the application for
variance demonstrates the following:

  1. Exceptional or unusual conditions exist that are not common to other areas similarly
    situated and practical difficulty may result from strict compliance with any of the
    zoning standards, provided that such relief will not have the effect of nullifying or
    impairing the intent and purpose of these standards. In determining "practical
    difficulty," the BZBA shall consider the following factors:

    1. Whether the property in question will yield a reasonable return or whether
      there can be any beneficial use of the property without the variance;

    2. Whether the variance is substantial;

    3. Whether the essential character of the neighborhood would be substantially
      altered or whether adjoining properties would suffer a substantial detriment as
      a result of the variance;

    4. Whether the variance would adversely affect the delivery of governmental
      services such as water and sewer;

    5. Whether the applicant purchased the property with knowledge of the
      requirement;

    6. Whether the applicant's predicament can be obviated feasibly through some
      method other than a variance; and

    7. Whether the spirit and intent behind the requirement would be observed and
      substantial justice done by granting the variance.

  2. No variance shall be granted if the submitted conditions or circumstances affecting
    the applicant's property are of so general or recurrent a nature as to make reasonably
    practicable the formulation of a general regulation for such conditions or situations.

  3. No variance shall be granted if doing so will have the potential to reduce the level of
    ecological integrity from the existing level to a lesser level as shown on any of the
    individual metrics or the undeveloped composite set forth in Appendix B to this
    Code, unless substantially mitigated.

  4. No variance shall be granted reducing the size of lots contained in an existing or
    proposed subdivision if it will result in an increase in the number of lots beyond the
    number otherwise permitted for the total subdivision, pursuant to the applicable zone
    District regulations.

  5. If authorized, a variance shall represent the least deviation from the regulations that
    will afford relief.

  6. In granting such variances, the BZBA may require such conditions as will, in its
    independent judgment, secure substantially the objectives of the standard so varied or
    modified.

  7. Under no circumstances shall the BZBA grant a variance to allow a use not
    permitted, or a use expressly or by implication prohibited under the terms of this
    Code for the zone district containing the property for which the variance is sought.

  8. No variance shall be granted to the maximum allowed building footprint area of each
    District's "Property Development/Design Standards" in Chapter 1205 of this Code."

Section 1204.04    Site Plans

All reviewing agencies, the City Manager, the Planning Commission, and the City Council shall
review site plan applications, and all submitted plans and reports, and evaluate them to determine
their compliance with the following standards:

  1. The development shall be consistent with the purposes and intent of this Code, and
    with the policies, goals, and objectives of any applicable community plan, including
    the City of Hudson Comprehensive Plan, as amended from time to time.
    1. The development complies with the use regulations as set forth in Chapter
      1206 of this Code.

    2. The development complies with all applicable requirements set forth in
      Chapter 1207, "Zoning Development and Site Plan Standards," of this Code,
      except to the extent modifications, variances, or waivers have been expressly
      allowed.

    3. The development complies with all applicable federal, state, or county
      development regulations, standards, and requirements, or plans, including but
      not limited to wetlands, water quality, and wastewater regulations.

    4. The proposed development shall avoid or minimize land disturbance and
      grading and preserve the original contours and other natural topographical
      features of the site to the maximum extent feasible and shall incorporate
      measures to minimize soil erosion during all construction phases.

    5. The development must protect and enhance historic structures, sites, and
      archeological features designated by federal, state, and local agencies, and
      the applicant shall commit, to the maximum extent feasible, to protecting and
      enhancing any such structures, sites, and features eligible for designation
      discovered during the development process.

  2. At the option of the applicant and prior to final site plan review by the Planning
    Commission, or by City Council when the application is for a major development
    that is called up by Council, the applicant may request in writing to obtain concept
    plan review and approval. The Planning Commission, or City Council, shall review
    the submittals as required for concept plan review in Appendix A of this Code and
    evaluate them to determine their preliminary compliance with the standards set forth
    in subsection (a)(1)-(6) above, subject to final site plan review and approval.

  3. The purpose of the concept plan approval procedure is: (1) to afford the applicant an
    opportunity to receive guidance of the Planning Commission, or Council when the
    application is for a major development that is called up by Council, on the major
    features of the site design for the development plan prior to the submission of
    engineering details for the project; and (2) to obtain a decision on the concept plan
    by the Planning Commission or City Council, conditioned upon review and
    satisfaction of the requirements for final site plan review by the Planning
    Commission or City Council. Approval of a concept plan does not constitute a final
    decision on the site plan application since the plan may require revisions based upon
    a review of the submissions for final site plan approval by the Planning Commission
    or City Council.

Section 1204.05    Subdivisions

  1. Standards for Review of a Minor Subdivision Plan.
    The Community Development Director and City Engineer shall review all
    applications for minor subdivisions and evaluate them to determine their compliance
    with the following standards:
    1. The subdivision shall be consistent with the purposes and intent of this Code,
      and with the policies, goals, and objectives of any applicable community
      plan, including the City of Hudson Comprehensive Plan, as amended from
      time to time.

    2. The subdivision complies with the subdivision development and design
      standards as set forth in Chapter 1208 of this Code, except to the extent
      modifications, variances, or waivers have been expressly allowed.

    3. The subdivision is found to be compatible with residential development
      within one thousand (1,000) feet of the proposed subdivision=s boundaries or
      can be made compatible with conditions to mitigate the impact of the
      subdivision.

    4. The general layout of lots, roads, driveways, utilities, drainage facilities, and
      other services within the proposed subdivision shall be designed in a way that
      minimizes the amount of land disturbance, maximizes the amount of open
      space in the development, preserves existing trees/vegetation and wetlands,
      protects critical wildlife habitat, fosters efficient, orderly lot configuration
      and otherwise accomplishes the purposes and intent of this Code. Applicants
      shall refer to the zoning development standards set forth in Chapter 1205 and
      1207 and shall consider them in the layout of the subdivision in order to
      avoid creating lots or patterns of lots that will make compliance with such
      development standards difficult or infeasible. Where not specifically
      required, clustering of lots within a subdivision is encouraged to meet the
      requirements of this provision.

    5. The subdivision complies with all applicable development regulations,
      standards, and requirements, or plans, including but not limited to wetlands,
      water quality, erosion control, and wastewater regulations of the federal or
      state governments and other relevant jurisdictions.

  2. Standards for Review of a Preliminary Subdivision Plan.
    All reviewing agencies and decision-making bodies shall review a preliminary
    subdivision plan application, together with all submitted plans and reports, and
    evaluate them to determine their compliance with the following standards:
    1. The subdivision shall be consistent with the purposes and intent of this Code,
      and with the policies, goals, and objectives of any applicable community
      plan, including the City of Hudson Comprehensive Plan, as amended from
      time to time.

    2. The subdivision complies with the subdivision development and design
      standards as set forth in Chapter 1208 of this Code, except to the extent
      modifications, variances, or waivers have been expressly allowed.

    3. The subdivision is found to be compatible with residential development
      within one thousand (1,000) feet of the proposed subdivision's boundaries or
      can be made compatible with conditions to mitigate the impact of the
      subdivision.

    4. The general layout of lots, roads, driveways, utilities, drainage facilities, and
      other services within the proposed subdivision shall be designed in a way that
      minimizes the amount of land disturbance, maximizes the amount of open
      space in the development, preserves existing trees/vegetation and wetlands,
      protects critical wildlife habitat, and otherwise accomplishes the purposes
      and intent of this Code. Applicants shall refer to the zoning development
      standards set forth in Chapter 1207 and shall consider them in the layout of
      the subdivision in order to avoid creating lots or patterns of lots that will
      make compliance with such development standards difficult or infeasible.
      Where not specifically required, clustering of lots within a subdivision is
      encouraged to meet the requirements of this provision.

    5. The subdivision complies with all applicable development regulations,
      standards, and requirements, or plans, including but not limited to wetlands,
      water quality, erosion control, and wastewater regulations of the federal or
      state governments and other relevant jurisdictions.

  3. Standards for Review of a Final Subdivision Plat.
    All reviewing agencies and decision-making bodies shall review a final subdivision
    plat application, together with all submitted plans and reports, and evaluate them to
    determine their compliance with the following standard:
    1. The final subdivision plat conform in all respects with the approved
      preliminary plan and incorporates all recommended changes, modifications,
      and conditions attached to approval of the preliminary plan.

    2. Plans and specifications for improvements connected with development of
      the subdivision comply with the subdivision development and design
      standards as set forth in Chapter 1208 of this Code, and any other relevant
      city, county, state, or federal regulations, except to the extent modifications,
      variances, or waivers have been expressly allowed.

    3. The subdivider has either installed all required improvements or has executed
      a Final Subdivision Improvement Agreement and posted required bonds
      pursuant to Section 1208.15(a).

Section 1204.06    Development Agreements

The Planning Commission and the City Council shall review development agreement applications
and evaluate them to determine their compliance with the following standards:

  1. The development agreement shall be consistent with the purposes and intent of this Code, and with the policies, goals, and objectives of any applicable community plan, including the City of Hudson Comprehensive Plan, as amended from time to time.

  2. The development agreement complies with the requirements set forth in Chapter 1209, "Development Agreements."

  3. The development agreement complies with the use regulations as set forth in Chapters 1205 and 1206 of this Code.

  4. The development agreement complies with all applicable requirements set forth in Chapter 1207, "Zoning Development and Site Plan Standards," of this Code, except to the extent modifications, variances, or waivers have been expressly allowed.

  5. The financial benefits of the development agreement to the City outweigh its costs.

  6. The development agreement and developer provide adequate assurances to the City that the development will go forward as planned in return for any vesting of property rights beyond what may otherwise be allowed by Ohio law.

  7. The development agreement complies with all applicable federal, state, or county development regulations, standards, and requirements, or plans, including but not limited to wetlands, water quality, and wastewater regulations.

Section 1204.07    Certificates of Appropriateness

The AHBR shall review applications for Certificates of Appropriateness and evaluate them to
determine their compliance with the following standards:

  1. The proposed change will not adversely affect or destroy any significant historic or architectural feature of the structure.

  2. The proposed change is neither inappropriate or inconsistent with the spirit and purpose of the City's historic preservation laws and it will not adversely affect or destroy the general historic and architectural significance of the Historic District.

  3. With respect to a proposed demolition, preservation is not economically feasible for the applicant and/or the denial of such Certificate would result in practical difficulty or unnecessary hardship that would deprive the applicant of all reasonable use of the land or building involved.

  4. The proposed change complies with the historic district/landmark architectural and design standards set forth in Section 1207.18(a) of this Ordinance and Appendix D.