It was no surprise to many Severna Park residents that the house being constructed at 132 Overlea Drive was recently issued a stop work order. The Voice staff asked the Department of Inspections and Permits about the house and possible outcomes.
Q: The residential setbacks for a house in R5 zoning are 25 feet from the front, 20 from the rear and 7 from the sides. This house is almost on the road. I understand Planning and Zoning (OPZ) approved it – not Inspections and Permits – but do you know any reasons why the project went through? Was the plot grandfathered in?
A: Correct, OPZ approved the subdivision. The owner applied for and was granted a variance for setbacks by the administrative hearing officer. You can find the variance decision 2018-258v on their webpage: www.aacounty.org/departments/admin-hearings/decision-archive/index.html.
Q: Article 15, Section 114 of the county code explains the stop work order conditions. There is no timetable (we assume it’s because each project is different). What are the possible outcomes for the house?
A: Upon initial investigation, it appears that the house is approximately 1 foot from the right-of-way boundary and also appears to be within an existing drainage easement for the roadside swale/ditch along Earleigh Heights Connector. Inspections and Permits staff are in the process of scheduling a meeting to include the Department of Public Works and the property owner to discuss the situation and possible solutions.
Q: Is there a general estimate of when those decisions will be made by the Department of Inspections and Permits?
A: We are working to come to a decision as soon as possible.