ZBA Grants Garage Variance

The Rochester Zoning Board of Appeals on August 9 gave Adam Rogers, 46 Bennett Road, a variance to allow an attached garage closer than 40 feet from the side property line.

Attorney Rick Manning said, because of the tapered trapezoid shape of the property and the location of the septic system, the only location for an attached garage would be on the right side of the property, placing the 24-foot by 30-foot garage 18 feet from the abutting property line.

Manning referred to a 10-foot by 10-foot connector between the garage and the house as a “breezeway,” but ZBA Chairman Richard Cutler pointed out that the structure was enclosed, so technically not a breezeway.

Anyhow, when asked why it needed to be 10 feet long, Manning stated that, with the egress doors being about 3.5 feet wide each, “You’d literally be banging door to door to get into the house.”

Manning said the requirements of a variance have been met, pointing to the unique shape of the property, the fact that a garage could not be built anywhere else on the lot, and that, without the variance, the hardship would be having to keep the residents’ vehicles outdoors in the winter, and the Rogerses would be “deprived of the opportunity to improve both the value and aesthetics of the property.” Furthermore, Manning said the garage would not be a detriment to the neighborhood, and even benefit it because, with the vehicles safely stored in the garage, visitors would no longer have to park on the road.

One abutter spoke in favor of the project, with no abutters objecting to the garage.

The garage is designed for one-and-a-half stories, with the second “story” being for storage only. Nonetheless, the board wrote into the conditions that no residential space would be allowed in the garage, and the dwelling must remain a single-family house. The garage must also not exceed 18 feet from the side property line.

The next meeting of the Rochester Zoning Board of appeals is scheduled for August 23 at 7:15 pm at Rochester Town Hall.

Rochester Zoning Board of Appeals

By Jean Perry


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