revised 12/14/2018: new paragraphs added at the bottom...
On June 6, 2018, Cincinnati City Council adopted Interim Development Control (IDC) Overlay Distric No. 81, "Hyde Park/Mt. Lookout District", in the Hyde Park and Mount Lookout neighborhoods as an overlay distric for a period of three months. This Emergency Ordinance took effect immediately, and will be in place until September 6, 2018. During the period of the IDC, all demolition permits filed in Hyde Park and Mount Lookout are required to go through additional review by the City Planning Commission.
Along with the IDC, on May 18, 2018, Cincinnati City Planning Commission temporarily suspended Chapter 6 of the City’s Subdivision Rules, requiring all subdivisions of land within Hyde Park and Mt. Lookout to be reviewed by the City Planning Commission. This suspension is in place for a period of 100 days, expiring on August 25, 2018.
During this time, City Planning Department Staff will be facilitating a study of residential density patterns, including the study of identifiable historic, architectural, and physical attributes embodied by property in the Hyde Park and Mount Lookout neighborhoods to determine if there are any necessary amendments to the Cincinnati Zoning Code and/or Subdivision Regulations that will help preserve and protect the long-standing, character-defining features and density patterns of those neighborhoods. The city asks this study to be completed in the 3 months this IDC is in place.
To assist in this study, City Council created a Working Group of seven people to work together diligently together over the period of these next three months to discuss and agree upon any proposed changes. One member of the Hyde Park Community Council Executive Committee is one of the seven on the Working Group (see highlighted text below).
Section 6. That there is hereby created a working group of seven members including one member of the Hyde Park Community Council Executive Committee, one member of the Mount Lookout Community Council Executive Board, the Mayor or his designee, one member of the Economic Growth and Zoning Committee or the member’s designee, one member of the City Planning Commission, two members of the Homebuilders Association of Greater Cincinnati, one of whom represents a large residential home builder and one who represents a small residential home builder, and one representative of the Cincinnati Board of Realtors. Each group or entity comprising the working group shall select its representative to the working group. The committee shall be staffed by a representative of the City Administration selected by the City Manager. The working group shall provide a report on its recommendations for zoning code map amendments, zoning code text amendments, and other relevant code and policy changes to address concerns related to demolitions in the Hyde Park and Mount Lookout neighborhoods to the Economic Growth and Zoning Committee within ninety days of the effective date of this ordinance.
The first meeting of the IDC Working Group was Tuesday, June 19, 2018. We agreed to weekly meetings on Thursday mornings at 8:00am in the II Centennial Plaza building (likely 5th floor), with a large public meeting to report progress to the community at Hyde Park Community United Methodist Church Little Theater at 7:00 pm on Tuesday, July 24th. Note that this committee’s pervue does not include tax abatement; reviewing possible Conservation District rules from other cities and beginning to develop recommendations for Cincinnati rules is the expected agenda for the next few weeks. Meetings are public, but voting members are limited to those listed in Section 6 above. HPNC President, Bob Smyth, is Hyde Park’s official representative in this study group.
The second meeting of the IDC Working Group was Tuesday, June 26, 2018. We reviewed some of the many conservation district guidelines furnished as a model (Beacon Hill from San Antonio seemed well regarded), and discussed possible priorities for our group. The main output was the request that each of the 8 official members submit their top 3 priorities for this IDC to Jared Ellis by Monday, July 3.
paragraph added 7/7/2018: The third working group meeting was Thursday, July 5, and we began to establish short term and long term goals. We were charged with preparing the amendments to the zoning code, and rewrite to the lot split regulations for review on July 12. On July 6, members of the IDC working group appeared before the city's Planning Commission to ask to extend the 90 day term of the IDC to 1 year to allow more time to develop the necessary consensus for the possible conservency district regulations. The planning commission voted unanimously to support the extension. The extension must be approved by city council before it can take effect. That vote is tentatively scheduled when council returns from summer recess on September 6.
paragraph added 7/31/2018: There was a public meeting on July 24 to present the progress of the working group and to gather public comment. A draft of the revised subdivision rules was presented. The draft rules require all lot splits go before City Planning Commission (current requirement is 5 lots or more), tightens up lot subdivision rules, restricts panhandle lots, . Creation of legislation to create a conservancy districts in the city was discussed. Given limited available time, initial conservancy district guidelines will have to be fairly broad, and will probably govern building envelope, and building placement (rather than specific elements of style). Public comment received asked for increased notification of building demolition application, and concerns about clear cutting trees and vegitation (especially during demolition or construction). Still expect to submit a draft of the lot splitting rules, and an initial draft of some conservancy district guidlines that govern demolition and new construction to City Planning Commission on August 17.
Paragraph added 8/14/18: At the 8/14/18 regular monthly board meeting, the Hyde Park Neighborhood Council Board voted to support the draft updated subdivision regulations (draft revised 8/8/18), the draft enabling legislation that allows the city to enact neighborhood conservancy districts (Chapter 1436 also dated 8/8/18), and the Hyde Park Neighborhood Conservation District plan to cover the Hyde Park Neighborhood Council boundaries (less the current business overlay districts) that describe maximum building envelop for replacement housing where a demolition is involved. These documents are all products of the IDC81 working group to be presentedfor endorsement at the Cincinnati Planning Commission meeting on August 17. and to Cincinnati City Council by Sept 6 at the expiration of the current IDC81.
Paragraph added 8/20/18: At its 8/17 meeting, the Cincinnati Planning Commission voted to accept city planning staff recommendations related to IDC81. Cincinnati Planning Commission recommends to city council to pass the proposed legislation allowing creation of Neighborhood Conservation Districts in Cincinnati, and to enact the proposed Hyde Park and Mt. Lookout Neighborhood Conservation districts. Cincinnati Planning Commission recommends the narrower extension of the IDC81 until 12/31/18 in order to draft requirements for building new housing on vacant lots (currently only demolitions are directly within the IDC81's scope of work). Cincinnati Planning Commission also voted to support the draft revisions to city code related to lot splits and the demolition/building permit process to allow needed vetting by the affected agencies before presentation to city council (also expected by year end)
Paragraphs revised 9/6/18: IDC81 was the main topic of Mt. Lookout's regular August Meeting on 8/20/18 at Christ the King Church. On 9/5/18, Cincinnati City Council's Economic Growth and Zoning subcommittee voted 4-0 to support the creation of Hyde Park and Mt. Lookout Neighborhood Conservation Districts, and support a 3 month extension of a limited IDC81, and to forward their recommendations to the full city council for their for enactment at council's regular meeting on 9/6 in room 300 at City Hall.
IDC working group meeting minutes and other relevant documents are available thru the links below:
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