Drew Clough 0

No Thank You! Front Setback Averaging in Brookhaven

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No Thank You!

(Front Set Back Averaging in the City of Brookhaven)

The City of Brookhaven is considering revising the front setback rules to “front setback averaging”, which forces new homes and additions to be positioned such that the front lines up with the average of existing homes within 75’ of a subject property, many of which were built 50+ years before and sit much further from the street than today’s homebuyers want. In 2018, Brookhaven discarded the front setback averaging due to the hardships and overwhelming # of variance cases it creates. It denies property owners the right to a reasonable use of their land.

Key Points

  • Most buyers of new homes in Brookhaven prefer to maximize the backyard space.
  • Today’s young parents have safety concerns with children playing in front yards on public streets and prefer to have children spend time in fenced in backyards
  • Protecting large, specimen trees during the construction of new homes is difficult. It is only possible when the trees are located near the perimeter of subject properties. Forcing the homes further towards the rear of properties, where many large hardwood trees are located, reduces the likelihood of preservation of the very trees Brookhaven wants to protect
  • The Dekalb County stormwater infrastructure that Brookhaven inherited is quite problematic. Many properties have significant stormwater issues during heavy rains. Forcing the homes to be located towards the rear makes it significantly more difficult for builders to improve the stormwater runoff and locate inground water quality systems away from the proposed new homes.
  • Front Setback Averaging tries to force a cookie-cutter, master planned subdivision-type feel to a neighborhood that attracts people because of the diversity of people, age groups, and architectural styles.
  • Nearby municipalities with significant infill construction activity such as City of Atlanta, Chamblee and Sandy Springs have much more lenient front setback methodology than the one proposed for Brookhaven.

Dear Planning Commission and City Council:

I/We as a citizen of Brookhaven, respectfully request that Planning Commission and City Council DENY

(TA20-10 and ordinance to Amend Sections 27-67, 27-68, and 27-1336, of the code of the City of Brookhaven, related to Average Front yard setback.

I/We feel that amending this ordinance and once again enforcing an outdated and one size fits all ordinance is not within the best interest of the Citizens of Brookhaven and for the overall betterment of the Community.

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