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Dare Looks at Zoning to Increase Housing

MANTEO — The Dare County Board of Commissioners says it’s making an effort to “increase year-round, essential housing in the unincorporated areas of the county where the board oversees planning and zoning initiatives,” the county announced Monday.

As part of the effort, the board is holding a public hearing 5:30 p.m. Sept. 16 to hear feedback on four proposed zoning amendments. The hearing is in the commissioners meeting room in the Dare County Administration Building.

Planning Director Donna Creef presented the proposed alternatives Monday during the board meeting.

The alternatives would increase the number of zoning districts that allow cluster home developments and add three new zoning sections, including educational housing alternatives, conditional use subdivisions and workforce housing units. Cluster home developments consist of more than one residential dwelling on one parcel of land that are occupied on a long-term basis. The current cluster home development regulations limit structures to 1,200 square feet of heated space, according to the ordinance.

“We are listening to our constituents and understand the hardships a lack of essential housing has created for our community. Our Board is committed to finding ways to expand opportunities for essential housing in districts throughout unincorporated Dare County. These proposed amendments would accomplish that in portions of Hatteras Island, the mainland, Roanoke Island and Colington Island. We appreciate the willingness of the Planning Board to help meet the need for year-round housing and we challenge the towns to work with us to create more opportunities throughout Dare County,” said Chairman Bob Woodard in a statement.

Comments during the public hearing can be made from Hatteras Island via video link at the Fessenden Center Annex, 47017 Buxton Back Road, Buxton. Written comments may be mailed to the Dare County Board of Commissioners, P.O. Box 1000, Manteo, NC, 27954.

Review a complete draft of the changes to zoning ordinances and view the public hearing notice online and for additional information, contact Creef at 252-475-5873

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The story was compiled by staff members of Coastal Review Online.