The 2016 rezoning INCREASED residential development by 35%*
*When you compare Capped development post rezoning to the previous 9 years (See “2007-2018 Growth Data” document)
In 2016, Falmouth’s Town Council voted to change the town’s zoning. It created Growth Districts where they want to direct the majority of new residential development. The largest new Growth District is Residential District A (“RA”).
“RA” Growth District Zoning Changes
Added Two Family, Multi-Family & Accessory Dwelling Units to Permitted Structures
Cut the Single Family Minimum lot Size by 50% – from .46 acres to .23 acres
Two Family development can occur on just .23 of an acre
Multi-family developments can occur on just .34 of an acre (up to 6 units/development)
Cut the allowable road frontage by 60% – from 125′ to 50′
Cut the front setback by 60% – from 25′ to 10′
Cut the side setback by 50% – from 20′ to 10′
Cut the back setback by 25% – from 40′ to 30′
A large section of the new RA District is already as densely populated as Portland!
|Falmouth Foreside population density – 962 people/square mile|
|City of Portland population density – 963 people/square mile|
“LPAC believes that if existing non-conformities in the growth area can be reduced, building in this area will be made easier…” – LPAC
The Town Council adopted the Long Range Planning Advisory Committee’s (“LPAC”) Comprehensive plan in 2013 and it was approved by the State of Maine in 2014. The logic for many of LPAC’s suggested zoning changes were briefly described in their 2015 draft document “Comprehensive Plan Implementation Growth Are Recommendations – Year 1” , page 3.
LPAC LOGIC FOR REDUCING THE MINIMUM LOT SIZES IN GROWTH DISTRICTS
The Board of Zoning Appeals is busy
Non-conforming lots require Board of Zoning Appeals approval for development which takes time
Current rules discourage development of non-conforming lots
Owners of non-conforming lots have left Falmouth due to the process
Consequently, the Town Council cut in half the minimum lot size in the entire RA District to conform to non-conforming lots because the Zoning Appeals Board was busy…
For the Record
“Three-quarters of residents indicate the Town should develop smaller zoning districts that more closely relate to the character of existing development…” LPAC survey finding
LPAC conducted a statistically-valid survey in 2011 of Falmouth residents and those with businesses in Falmouth to guide the creation of the town’s Comprehensive Plan.
TOP THREE PRIORITIES OF RESIDENTS
Education – 84%
Public Safety – 75%
Driving/Roads – 69%
Falmouth resident’s top 3 priorities are directly, and negatively impacted by accelerated growth and increased density.
(for more information about the survey, see “Town of Falmouth 2013 Comprehensive Plan, Volume II Appendices“, page 16)
2016 to 2018 was the FASTEST three year growth period in the past twelve years
What You Can Do
There are three ways to tell the Falmouth Town Council that you want to repeal the 2016 zoning changes:
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