June 8, 2023

Woodstockers face revolutionary zoning adjustments designed to encourage long-term housing and limit short-term leases. The suggestions had been introduced at a current assembly of the city board.

“The end result of this effort has a human high quality to it. It has a human facet to it. And that individuals facet of it’s that we wish to construct housing in order that individuals who stay right here can keep right here, or who’ve been displaced, to allow them to come again,” stated Housing Oversight Activity Power co-chair Kirk Ritchey. “And that focuses on staff. We’d like our staff right here, we want our volunteers right here, we want our firefighters right here, our EMTs, and those that volunteer. After which we additionally want individuals who work for this city to have the ability to stay right here.”

Ritchey identified many aged Woodstockers who want to transfer into smaller locations in Woodstock discover there is no such thing as a place for them to go.

The proposed zoning revisions change some 300 pages of code, however a desk of contents, a abstract of adjustments, and strike-through variations can be found in town web site, woodstockny.org, and by clicking on “Zoning Updates” on the record of hyperlinks on the left facet.

The city is within the midst of a 45-day public remark interval and has submitted the adjustments to the city and county planning boards for overview earlier than the city board approves them.

Suggestions will be despatched to [email protected].

A number of the vital proposed adjustments embody:

Second ADUs

The brand new zoning will make it simpler for property homeowners to make accent dwelling models, or ADUs, obtainable. Beneath the present code, these are referred to as accent flats — usually above garages, in attics, or in a indifferent cottage. They’ve been allowed since 1998.
The brand new code stipulates a second ADU should be reasonably priced. To be reasonably priced, it needs to be obtainable to these with an earnings of as much as 120 p.c of the world median earnings. The hire can’t be greater than 30 p.c of earnings. 

The requirement for affordability might be in a deed restriction. Enforcement might be within the city board’s palms. The duty pressure will suggest a governing physique to overview affordability regularly.

The brand new code additionally cleans up the definition of an ADU.

“The query of what’s an artist studio, what’s a pool home, what a visitor cottage was additionally troubling, and we’ve clarified that,” stated job pressure member and planning board vice-chair Judith Kerman.

“The rationale why we’re bringing this extra ADU in is to advertise long-term housing in our city is it’s much less intensive to have an ADU placed on a chunk of property than it’s to construct an entire advanced of reasonably priced housing,” defined Ritchey. “So that is one other approach that we are able to have a much less impression, if you’ll, and leverage current properties for long-term housing for many who can afford it.”

“It’s additionally the only factor to construct. Homes are onerous to construct,” added job pressure member Jeff Collins.

Supervisor Invoice McKenna likes that proposed change. “It’s nice,” he stated. “You’re recycling one thing that already exists.” 


The supply for three- and four-plex buildings within the code is new.

“The rationale why we targeted on that’s as a result of these are the identical measurement. They’ve measurement

restrictions, they usually’re the identical measurement as the dimensions restrictions of a single-family house,” Ritchey stated.
Incentives will be integrated for builders to construct the sort of construction and embody bike and pedestrian pathways. No short-term leases might be allowed within the three- and four-plex housing.

Floating housing

Then there’s the brand new floating residential district. In the sort of district, a developer can suggest issues not usually allowed within the zoning code.

“The floating residential district maintains some degree of flexibility for a developer who might need a extremely good thought. However we’re truly making a district, similar to your R-8 district, your R-5 districts, all the principles are set, what’s allowed, what number of allowed, what the sizes are, what the requirements are, the place they’re going to be, what environmental issues should be protected, and on and on,” stated planning marketing consultant Nan Stolzenburg. “The whole lot is ready similar to your regular districts are actually besides that it’s not mapped. So it’s floating.

“It’s a district that’s created with all the principles and laws, nevertheless it’s not mapped till somebody involves the city says, I’ve this nice thought. And I can meet all these guidelines, and I’ve a chunk of land that may be excellent for that, then they go to the city board and ask for that zoning district to be established on that parcel.”

Conservation subdivisions

One other new zoning part goals to preserve environmental sources, It may be achieved by means of clustering. Not all of the heaps must be the identical measurement, as is usually the case now.

“We checked out slopes,” stated job pressure co-chair Deborah DeWan. “We checked out different environmental sources. We checked out clustering. We checked out methods of conserving as a lot open area as attainable, however recognizing that individuals purchase land, they usually have sure rights to develop their land. And so we don’t have the instruments proper now.”

Clustering permits slopes and enormous open areas to be freed from improvement whereas having the identical variety of homes as a standard improvement.

Stopping forceouts

“It is a sheriff’s warrant for Might 31 for me to get out of my rental,” Regins Ippolito stated, holding up an eviction discover. “I pay $1300 a month. However my property proprietor says you’re costing me cash. They intend on renting my place for 4 grand a month. So from $15,600, as much as $48,000 yearly. I’m the casualty that you simply all are working for.” she stated.

“That’s why we’re working so onerous to get this finished,” McKenna stated.

“Please do one thing. I’m not the one one,” she stated.

An info session on the zoning adjustments might be held on Might 30, 6:30 p.m., on the Mescal Hornbeck Neighborhood Heart, situated at 59 Rock Metropolis Highway in Woodstock

The submit Woodstock zoning adjustments transfer towards adoption first appeared on Hudson Valley One.