Recent Local Government Activity

County: Lee   City: Sanibel

Date Created: 06/04/23
Last updated:06/04/23

Sanibel, FL to Discuss Ordinance Affecting Setbacks
Staff finds existing required setbacks, particularly front setbacks, have a negative effect on the viability of redevelopment for existing commercial uses. Using measuring tools on GIS maps, staff estimates that 58% of existing commercial development on Periwinkle Way is nonconforming to (encroaches upon) the required front setback (currently 100 feet from of right-of-way centerline). Nonconforming development may only modify or improve existing buildings with a waiver permit authorized by Planning Commission. In the face of substantial damage caused by Hurricane Ian, nonconforming commercial development may only re-establish its pre-disaster location pursuant to build-back provisions, which does not permit additional floor area, development footprint, or improvement outside of the three-dimensional building envelope. To redevelop, this means that for many existing commercial uses, site planning of those parcels must change significantly – pushing buildings behind the required setback line and behind required off-street parking. While achieving conformance via redevelopment is generally positive, it’s important to consider whether conformance with existing codes results in the achievement of the Sanibel Plan vision and goals. In the case of site planning and commercial district setbacks, staff finds existing standards do not best exemplify our shared community vision. Section 126-1029 – Site planning requires that off-street parking shall be primarily located to the front or side of buildings. Commercial district setback requirements on major arterials and collector roads (e.g., Periwinkle Way, Palm Ridge Road, Tarpon Bay Road) are 25% greater than setbacks for residential buildings on such roads. Together, these standards push commercial buildings far from public space, challenging accessibility for pedestrians and cyclists. In doing so, off-street parking lots become a dominant aesthetic feature of the built environment to the detriment of the community’s unique small-town identity, as described in the Vision Statement. The Vision Statement further endeavors the avoidance of “auto-urban” development influences.

Issue History

06/04/23  The Council will hold discussion at the 6/06/23 meeting

Related Documents

6/06/23 Background
6/06/23 Meeting Agenda