about criteria for Variance

Criteria for Variance Requests


  • There are extraordinary and exceptional conditions pertaining to the particular piece of property;
  • These conditions do not generally apply to other properties in the vicinity;
  • These conditions are not the result of the applicant's own actions;
  • Because of these conditions, the application of this UDO to the particular piece of property would effectively prohibit or unreasonably restrict the utilization of the property;
  • The authorization of the variance will not be of substantial detriment to adjacent property or to the public good, and the character of the zoning district where the property is located will not be harmed by the granting of the variance;
  • The reasons set forth in the application justify the granting of the variance, and the variance is the minimum variance that will make possible the reasonable use of the land, building or structure; and
  • The granting of the variance will be in harmony with the general purpose and intent of this Ordinance, and will not be injurious to the neighborhood or otherwise detrimental to the public welfare.


Please note that the Board of Zoning Appeals may not grant a variance from the zoning standards of the UDO that would (Sec. 17-2.5(s)(4)b):

  • Permit a use of land or a structure that is not allowed in the applicable zoning district;
  • Allow the physical extension of a nonconforming use; or
  • Change the zoning district boundaries shown on the Official Zoning Map.

In addition, the following do not constitute grounds for grant of a variance:

  • The nonconforming use of neighboring lands, structures, or buildings in the same zoning district that applies to the land for which the variance is sought;
  • Any permitted use of lands, structures or buildings in zoning districts other than the zoning district that applies to the land for which the variance is sought;   or
  • The fact that land may be utilized more profitably should a variance be granted.