Borough of River Edge, NJ
Bergen County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
A use, building or structure which is lawfully in existence at the effective date of this chapter and shall be made nonconforming at the passage of this chapter or any applicable amendment thereto may be continued, except as otherwise provided in this Article.
No existing use, building, structure or premises devoted to a nonconforming use shall be enlarged, extended, reconstructed, substituted or structurally altered, except when changed to a conforming use or when required to do so by law and as follows:
A. 
Any nonconforming structure damaged by fire, causality, act of God or intentionally reduced to less than 50% of its previous existing area may be restored, reconstructed or used as before, provided that the restoration or reconstruction complies with all zoning requirements in place at the time of the restoration or reconstruction. In the case of a nonconforming foundation, all construction from grade shall conform with existing zoning requirements. The approving authority shall determine the time period in which complete restoration shall take place.
[Amended 5-18-1998 by Ord. No. 1220; 6-23-2008 by Ord. No. 1618]
B. 
Normal maintenance and repair of a structure containing a nonconforming use is permitted, provided that it does not extend the area or volume of space occupied by the nonconforming use and does not increase the number of dwelling units.
C. 
Nothing in this chapter shall prevent the strengthening or restoring to a safe or lawful condition of any part of any building or structure declared unsafe or unlawful by the Construction Official and/or other authorized state or Borough official.
[Amended 5-18-1998 by Ord. No. 1220]
D. 
Any existing single-family residential structure which violates any yard requirements may have vertical additions to the principal structure without an appeal for a variance, provided that the additions do not encroach beyond the existing setbacks of the existing principal structure and maximum building height is not exceeded.
[Amended 6-22-1987 by Ord. No. 935; 5-18-1998 by Ord. No. 1220; 6-7-1999 by Ord. No. 1253; 6-23-2008 by Ord. No. 1618; 7-7-2008 by Ord. No. 1624; 11-21-2011 by Ord. No. 1743]
(1) 
Subject to Subsection D, the required side yards for any existing single-family dwelling on a lot existing prior to the effective date of this chapter and having a nonconforming lot width shall be as follows:
(a) 
For lots with a width of 60 feet to but not including 75 feet, the combined side yards shall not be less than 15 feet and the smaller side yard shall not be less than six feet.
(b) 
For lots with a width of less than 60 feet, the combined side yards shall be not less than 12 feet and the smaller side yard shall not be less than five feet.
(c) 
In no case shall the open space between the building and a building on an adjoining property be less than 12 feet.
(2) 
For such lots, the required lot depth at any point may be decreased by 25% if the average lot depth conforms with the minimum requirement.
E. 
Change of title or ownership does not discontinue a nonconforming use.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Former Subsection F, regarding single-family dwelling additions and accessory buildings that do not require variances, as amended, which immediately followed, was repealed 11-21-2011 by Ord. No. 1743. See now Subsection D.
A. 
A nonconforming use shall be considered abandoned if it is terminated by the owner; if a nonconforming use involving a structure is discontinued for 12 consecutive months; or if a nonconforming use of land without structure(s) ceases for a period of six months. The subsequent use of the abandoned structure and/or land shall be in conformity with this chapter.
B. 
When 50% or more of the existing area of a nonconforming building or structure is destroyed by fire or other casualty or an act of God, the use of such building or structure as a nonconforming use shall thereafter be terminated.
Nonconforming buildings or structures lawfully under construction on the effective date of this chapter, pursuant to plans filed with the Construction Official and approved by the Construction Official and all other Borough boards and agencies as required under law, may be completed and may be used for the nonconforming use for which it was designed, to the same extent as if such building or structure had been completed and been in use on the effective date of this chapter, provided that such building or structure shall be completed within one year after the effective date of this chapter.