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Residential code changes discussed by Forsyth County commissioners
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Changes could be coming to residential development standards in Forsyth County.

At a recent meeting regular meeting, the Forsyth County Board of Commissioners discussed changes to the county’s unified development code and moved ahead with a public hearing for the commission’s June 1 meeting.

“I think part of what we are looking at here is how do we have distinctively different categories, not just these categories that are variations on a theme,” District 5 Commissioner Laura Semanson said.

Two separate items, one a public hearing and one an old business item, were combined during the meeting to discuss all changes.

The zoning with the public hearing, which had no speakers, was to change the minimum lot size of single-family residential Res- 2 districts when connected to public or private sewer from 18,500 square feet to 22,000 square feet. A change would also make the minimum average lot size for Res-3 districts connected to sewer 18,500 square feet.

From the other item, changes are proposed to standards for Res-1, Res-2, Res-3, Res-4 and Res- 6 districts and would eliminate the single-family community residential district (CR2).

The changes would increase the minimum heated floor area per units from: 1,000 to 1,500 square feet for Res-1; 1,000 to 2,000 square feet for Res-2; 1,250 to 1,500 square feet for Res-4; and would change Res-6 from 600 square feet to 1,500 for non-apartment zonings and 900 square feet for a one bedroom apartment with an additional 150 for each extra bedroom.

The minimum side setbacks for Res-2, Res-3 and Res-4 would also be changed to 10 feet.

Maximum density per acre would decrease for Res-2 zonings from 1.71 to 1.5 units per acre for developments with on-site sewage disposal and from 2 to 1.8 units per acre for those on public or private sewer, and Res-4 would have a minimum lot width of 80 feet instead of 70.

At the meeting, changes were also proposed for Res-4, which would increase minimum lot size on sewer from 8,000 to 10,000 square feet, raise the minimum open space from 22 percent to 35 percent and decrease maximum density from 3.5 to 3 units per acre.

Another item at the meeting changing the code’s process for appealing zonings was approved, and an item to remove certain moratoriums was not needed due to the commission’s decision.