The Woodside Town Council on Nov. 19 unanimously passed the remainder of a development plan for the Glens neighborhood that the Planning Commission and planning department had been working on for more than a year.
The changes include incentives for building detached garages by allowing height increases for new garages on down-sloping lots.
The new rules also allow reduced setbacks for smaller, constrained lots maintaining existing development patterns, and a tiered approach for development on lots with more than a 35% slope.
The height-limit relaxation allows detached garages, carports and parking platforms to exceed the 17-foot overall height limit for accessory buildings, according to a staff report.
The setback rules allow the continuation of existing setback lines, with a minimum of a 5-foot setback, according to the report.
On Nov. 12, the council passed a portion of the Glens plan that increases the maximum house size for smaller lots. It also allows homeowners count parking that is in the road right-of-way but off the pavement toward meeting the requirement for off-street parking.
The right to increase house size is on a sliding scale for lots beginning at 3,500 square feet, the smallest lot in the Glens, and ending at a lot area of 14,000 square feet accounting for 51% of the lots in the neighborhood with a cap of 3,000 square feet on the size of each house, according to the staff report.
This would result in an increase of about 500 square feet in maximum home size, permitting additions to many houses that were not previously eligible under the old zoning rules.
Homes on lots between 14,000 square feet and 19,950 square feet will also have a 3,000-square-foot home size cap.
There will be no change to the maximum house size for lots above 20,000 square feet, with home sizes capped at 4,200 square feet, according to the staff report.
Since many streets in the Glens have a right-of-way of 40 feet and with the paved portion often less than half of that the Planning Commission determined that it was reasonable to allow parking on the unpaved right-of-way to count toward the minimum four required on-site parking spaces.
The council turned aside arguments from some residents at the two meetings that loosening the rules could increase the population in the Glens, thereby causing more traffic congestion and possibly impeding drivers from leaving and emergency vehicles from entering the neighborhood during an emergency.
The neighborhood of 185 homes has two points where residents can enter or leave, according to the staff report.
Other residents argued that the previous zoning rules had prevented them from enlarging their homes to accommodate growing families and were artificially depressing property values.
The new rules will take effect Dec. 19.