[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Lewisboro 5-12-1987 by L.L. No. 3-1987. Amendments noted where applicable.]
The Lewisboro Town Board hereby finds that excessive uniformity or dissimilarity or inappropriateness or poor quality of design in the exterior appearance of buildings, signs, other structures or land developments adversely affects the desirability of the immediate area and neighboring areas and, by so doing, impairs the benefits of occupancy of existing property in such areas; impairs the stability and value of both improved and unimproved real property in such areas; adversely affects the most appropriate development of such areas; produces degeneration of property in such areas, with attendant deterioration of conditions affecting the health, safety, morals and general welfare of the inhabitants thereof; and creates an improper relationship between the taxable value of real property in such areas and the cost of municipal services provided therefor. It is the purpose of this chapter to prevent these and other harmful effects of such exterior appearance of buildings, signs, other structures and land developments and thus to promote and protect the health, safety, morals and general welfare of the community.
[Amended 2-23-1993 by L.L. No. 4-1993]
The Town Board recognizes and respects the right of property owners to develop their property according to their own tastes consistent with the intent of this chapter.
[Amended 4-4-2005 by L.L. No. 2-2005]
There is hereby created an Architecture and Community Appearance Review Council (ACARC) which shall consist of five members, who shall be residents of the Town of Lewisboro, and who shall serve without compensation, and who shall be specifically qualified by reason of training or experience in a relevant business or profession or by reason of civic interest and sound judgment to assess the effects of a proposed structure or the alteration or demolition of a structure upon the property values and development of surrounding areas. Two members of the Council shall be licensed architects. The members of the Council shall be appointed by, and the Chairman thereof shall be designated by, the Lewisboro Town Board. Each member shall be appointed for a term of three years. Vacancies shall be filled by the Town Board for the unexpired term of any member whose seat has become vacant.
The following matters shall be referred to the ACARC for its approval, conditional approval or disapproval:
Within a Special Character Overlay District:
[Amended 3-24-1992 by L.L. No. 3-1992; 2-23-1993 by L.L. No. 4-1993]
Any application for a building permit for construction, reconstruction, exterior alteration or demolition of buildings or other structures, including fences or walls.
The Planning Board shall refer to the ACARC for its review and recommendation for Planning Board approval, conditional approval or disapproval plans for construction or exterior alteration of any commercial or business building or structure, or multifamily residence contained in any application for site plan approval pursuant to Article VI of the Zoning Ordinance of the Town of Lewisboro.
The Planning Board, prior to granting preliminary approval, may refer any item to the ACARC for its review and recommendation.
The Town Board shall refer to the ACARC for its review and recommendation plans for construction, exterior alteration or addition to Town of Lewisboro municipal or recreational structures or facilities.
For any matter referred to the ACARC in Subsections (A) through (E) above, the applicant shall submit an application to the ACARC, together with any necessary plans and pertinent data, and pay any required fees.
[Added 5-6-2013 by L.L. No. 6-2013]
[Amended 4-4-2005 by L.L. No. 2-2005; 5-6-2013 by L.L. No. 6-2013]
Regularly scheduled meetings of the ACARC shall be held monthly and at such other times as the Chairman shall designate. A majority of the Council (three members) shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business. The ACARC shall keep minutes of all its proceedings. Any decision or recommendation made by the ACARC must have the approval of a majority (three) of the members of the Council and shall be officially filed along with pertinent data upon which such decision or recommendation was based with the referring board or department within 45 days of the Council's receipt of the referral. In decisions of conditional approval or in recommendations where changes or modifications to any submission are required or recommended, the Council's report shall set forth the specific changes required or recommended and the reasons for the same. After having referred an application for a building or land development permit to the ACARC, the referring board or department shall take no final action prior to receiving and considering the recommendations of Council. Failure of the ACARC to report within 45 days shall be deemed to be a recommendation for approval of the application. The ACARC may request any applicant to appear.
In making its decisions and recommendations, the ACARC shall consider the following:
No building or structure or land development shall be so detrimental to the desirability, property values or development of the surrounding areas as to provoke one or more of the harmful effects set forth in § 7-1 by reason of:
The repeated and adjacent use of identical or near identical facades or structures arranged without respect to natural features of terrain or other existing structures.
The inappropriateness of a structure or land development in relation to any other structure or land development existing or for which a permit has been issued or to any other structure or land development included in the same application with respect to one or more of the following features:
Gross differences in cubical content floor area, height of building or height of roof.
Other significant design features, such as material or quality of architectural design, roof structures, structures, chimneys, exposed mechanical equipment and service, service and storage enclosures, signs, landscaping, retaining walls, parking areas, service and loading docks, dividing walls, fences, lighting posts and standards.
The Building Inspector shall refuse any permit application disapproved by the ACARC under provisions of § 7-3A above. The Building Inspector may approve any application conditionally approved by the Council as soon as the condition(s) specified in such conditional approval has been fulfilled. If the Council shall have approved any building permit application, then the Building Inspector may forthwith issue the permit as applied for. The Building Inspector may issue a permit as applied for in the case of any building permit application referred to the Council and upon which the Council has failed to act within 45 days of such referral.
Any person aggrieved by the action of the ACARC in disapproving a building permit application and/or of the Building Inspector in denying such permit because of such disapproval may take an appeal to the duly constituted Board of Appeals in the same manner as is provided for zoning appeals. Such Board of Appeals, after proceeding in the same manner as is provided for zoning appeals and with the same power and authority therein vested in passing upon appeals before it under the provisions of law and in the exercise thereof, may reverse or affirm or modify and affirm the action of the ACARC and/or of the Building Inspector.