Town of Coventry, RI
Kent County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
A. 
For the purposes of this chapter, certain terms or words used herein shall be interpreted as follows:
(1) 
The word "person" includes a firm, association, organization, partnership, trust, company, or corporation, as well as an individual.
(2) 
The present tense includes the future tense, the singular number includes the plural, and the plural number includes the singular.
(3) 
The word "shall" is mandatory, the word "may" is permissive.
(4) 
The words "used" or "occupied" include the words "intended, designed, or arranged to be used or occupied."
(5) 
The word "lot" includes the words "plot" or "parcel."
(6) 
The word "land" includes the words "water" and "marsh," unless otherwise designated herein.
(7) 
The word "structure" includes the word "building."
B. 
Where used in this chapter, words and terms defined in R.I.G.L. 45-22.2-4 shall have the meanings ascribed therein, unless otherwise defined by this chapter.
C. 
Where used in the Ordinance, the specific definition of words and terms listed in this article shall be interpreted as stated and shall have the meaning ascribed to them.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
ABANDONMENT
To cease or discontinue a use or activity without intent to resume, but excluding temporary or short-term interruptions to a use or activity during periods of remodeling, maintaining, or otherwise improving a facility, or during normal periods of vacation or seasonal closure. See § 255-830.
ABUTTER
One whose property abuts, that is, adjoins at a border, boundary, or point with no intervening land.
ACCESSORY FAMILY DWELLING UNIT
A dwelling unit that is separate from and not attached to the principal dwelling unit on the same lot.
ACCESSORY LIVING QUARTERS/IN-LAW APARTMENTS
An accessory dwelling unit for the sole use of one or more members of the family of the occupant or occupants of the principal residence, but not needing to have a separate means of ingress and egress.
ACCESSORY USE
A use of land or of a structure, or portion thereof, customarily incidental and subordinate to the principal use of the land or structure. An accessory use shall be restricted to the same lot as the principal use. An accessory use shall not be permitted without the principal use to which it is related.
ADMINISTRATIVE VARIANCE
Permission granted and administered by the Building Inspector or the Zoning Enforcement Officer of Coventry, and pursuant to the provisions of this chapter contained herein, to grant a dimensional variance other than lot area requirements from this chapter, but not to exceed 25% of each of the applicable dimensional requirements.
AGGRIEVED PARTY
An aggrieved party, for purposes of this chapter, shall be:
A. 
Any person who can demonstrate that their property will be injured by a decision of any official, board or agency responsible for administering this chapter; or
B. 
Anyone requiring notice pursuant to this chapter or R.I.G.L. Title 45, Chapter 24.
AGRICULTURAL LAND
"Agricultural land" as defined in R.I.G.L. § 45-22.2-4. Land suitable for agriculture by reason of suitability of soil or other natural characteristics or past use for agricultural purposes. Agricultural land includes that defined as prime farm land or additional farm land of statewide importance for Rhode Island by the Soil Conservation Service of the United States Department of Agriculture.
ALTERATION
Any change, addition, or modification in construction or occupancy of an existing structure.
APPLICANT
An owner or authorized agent of the owner submitting an application or appealing an action of any official, board or agency.
APPLICATION
The completed form or forms and all accompanying documents, exhibits and plans, if any, required of an applicant by an approving authority for development review, approval, or permitting purposes. In the case of any application relating to a business park district or a land development project in a business park district, infrastructure inspection fees may be waived at the discretion of the Town Council.
ARTERIAL ROAD
A high-capacity urban road. The primary function of an arterial road is to deliver traffic from collector roads to freeways, and between collector roads and urban centers. Arterial roads are depicted in the Circulation element of the Comprehensive Community Plan adopted on August 14, 1992, as amended June 19, 2000.
AUTO SALES
The sale of more than three used or new vehicles on any property or parcel per year.
BASEMENT
That portion of a building that is partly or completely below grade.
BED-AND-BREAKFAST INN
An owner-occupied dwelling where short-term lodging rooms and meals are provided for a fee.
BERM
An earthen mound designed to provide visual interest, screen undesirable views, and/or decrease noise.
BOARD
The Zoning Board of Review.
BUFFER
Land which is maintained in either a natural or landscaped state, and is used to screen and/or mitigate the impacts of development on surrounding areas, properties or rights-of-way.
BUFFER, PERIMETER LANDSCAPE
A continuous area of land set aside along the perimeter of a lot in which landscaping is used to provide a transition between and to reduce the environmental, aesthetic, and other impacts of one type of land use upon another.
BUILDING
Any structure used or intended for supporting or sheltering any use or occupancy.
BUILDING ENVELOPE
The three-dimensional space within which a structure is permitted to be built on a lot and which is defined by regulations governing building setbacks, maximum height, and bulk; by other regulations; and/or any combination thereof.
BUILDING HEIGHT
The vertical distance from grade, as determined by the Town, to the top of the highest point of the roof or structure. The distance shall exclude spires, chimneys, flag poles, and the like.
BUILDING HEIGHT IN A BUSINESS PARK
The vertical distance from grade, as determined by the location of the main entrance to the structure, to the top of the highest point of the roof or structure. The distance shall exclude spires, chimneys, flag poles and the like.
BUSINESS PARK or PLANNED BUSINESS PARK
The purpose of this district is to denote major commercial and employment centers for the town. Land uses in this district include all commercial uses other than heavy industrial and certain other uses specifically prohibited. Business parks and development plans therefor, and land development projects in Business Park Districts, shall be approved, upon review and recommendation by the Planning Commission, administered and developed by the Town Council under the provisions of Article XIV of this chapter, to the extent such provisions are deemed necessary and appropriate by the Council.
CAMPGROUNDS
One or more lots used for seasonal overnight residential occupancy in permanent or semipermanent structures, such as cabins, tents with tent platforms, or similar shelters. Such campgrounds may include any necessary permanent structures accessory to the principal use.
CAPACITY or LAND CAPACITY
The suitability of the land, as defined by geology, soil conditions, topography, and water resources, to support its development for uses such as residential, commercial, industrial, open space, or recreation. Land capacity may be modified by provision of facilities and services.
CLUSTER
A site planning technique that concentrates buildings in specific areas on the site to allow the remaining land to be used for recreation, common open space, and/or preservation of environmentally, historically, culturally, or other sensitive features and/or structures.
COMMERCIAL AGRICULTURE
The raising and breeding of more than two animal units for commercial enterprise, commercial greenhouses, and plant nurseries or other farm products for the sale of commodities on or off the premises. Assessory uses shall include sale of craft and perishable items produced from materials cultivated on the property.
COMMERCIAL COMPOSTING
An operation in which solid waste, excluding animal renderings and fish wastes, undergoes a process of accelerated biodegradation and stabilization of organic material under controlled conditions yielding a product which can safely be used. Such a product is then sold either wholesale or retail to the general public. Note that consultation with the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management is required for such an operation.
COMMISSION
The Planning Commission for the Town of Coventry.
COMMON OWNERSHIP
Either:
A. 
Ownership by one or more persons in any form of ownership of two or more contiguous lots; or
B. 
Ownership by any association (such ownership may also include a municipality) of one or more lots under specific development techniques.
COMMUNITY RESIDENCE
A home or residential facility where children and/or adults reside in a family setting and may or may not receive supervised care. This shall not include halfway houses or substance abuse treatment facilities. This shall include, but not be limited to the following:
A. 
Whenever six or fewer mentally handicapped children or adults reside in any type of residence in the community, as licensed by the state pursuant to R.I.G.L. § 40.1-24. All requirements pertaining to local zoning are waived for these community residences;
B. 
A group home providing care or supervision, or both, to not more than eight mentally disabled or mentally handicapped or physically handicapped persons, and licensed by the state pursuant to R.I.G.L. 40.1-24;
C. 
A residence for children providing care or supervision, or both, to not more than eight children including those of the care giver and licensed by the state pursuant to R.I.G.L. § 42-72.1;
D. 
A community transitional residence providing care or assistance, or both, to no more than six unrelated persons or no more than three families, not to exceed a total of eight persons, requiring temporary financial assistance, and/or to persons who are victims of crimes, abuse, or neglect, and who are expected to reside in that residence not less than 60 days nor more than two years. Residents will have access to and use of all common areas, including eating areas and living rooms, and will receive appropriate social services for the purpose of fostering independence, self-sufficiency, and eventual transition to a permanent living situation.
COMPREHENSIVE PLAN
The comprehensive community plan adopted by the Town of Coventry and approved pursuant to R.I.G.L. § 45-22.2.
CONVENIENCE STORE
Any retail establishment offering for sale prepackaged food products, household items, and any other goods commonly associated with the same and having a gross floor area of less than 5,000 square feet.
CUSTOMARY HOME OCCUPATION
Any occupation, profession, activity, or use that is clearly a customary, incidental, and accessory use of a residential dwelling unit carried out for gain by a resident, and which does not alter the exterior of the property or affect the residential character of the neighborhood.
DAY CARE: DAY-CARE CENTER
Any other day care center which is not a family day-care home.
DAY CARE: FAMILY DAY-CARE HOME
Any home other than the individual's home in which day care in lieu of parental care or supervision is offered at the same time to six or fewer individuals who are not relatives of the care giver, but may not contain more than a total of eight individuals receiving day care.
DAYS
Calendar days.
DAYTIME
The hours between 7:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m.
DENSITY, RESIDENTIAL
The number of dwelling units per unit of land.
DEVELOPMENT
The construction, reconstruction, conversion, structural alteration, relocation, or enlargement of any structure; any mining, excavation, landfill or land disturbance; any change in use, or alteration or extension of the use of land.
DEVELOPMENT PLAN REVIEW
The process whereby authorized local officials review the site plans, maps, and other documentation of a development to determine compliance with the stated purposes and standards of this chapter.
DISTRICT
See "zoning use districts."
DORMITORY
A structure used for housing by persons generally unrelated to each other by blood or marriage, but associated by reason or participation in the activities of a medical, religious, or educational organization. Such institutional dormitories are characterized by the provision of sleeping accommodations and common kitchen, dining or recreation facilities.
DRAINAGE SYSTEM
A system for the removal of water from land by drains, grading, or other appropriate means. These techniques may include runoff controls to minimize erosion and sedimentation during and after construction or development, the means for preserving surface and ground waters, and the prevention and/or alleviation of flooding.
DRIVE-IN FACILITY
An establishment that encourages or permits customers to receive a service or obtain a product, including food and drink, while in an automobile on the premises, or after briefly parking the automobile. See also "fast-food restaurant."
DUPLEX
Two single dwelling units each with separate entrances divided by a common party wall.
DWELLING
A building or portion thereof designed exclusively for residential occupancy, but not including hotels, motels, lodging houses, trailers, or structures solely for transient or overnight occupancy.
DWELLING UNIT
A structure or portion thereof providing complete, independent living facilities for one or more persons, including permanent provisions for living, sleeping, eating, cooking, and sanitation, and containing a separate means of ingress and egress.
DWELLING, MULTIFAMILY
A dwelling containing more than two dwelling units for occupancy of families living independently of each other including apartment houses, apartment hotels, and flats.
DWELLING, SINGLE-FAMILY
A building used exclusively for occupancy by one family.
DWELLING, TWO-FAMILY
A building used exclusively for occupancy by two families living independently of each other.
EARTH REMOVAL
The extraction of minerals and mining of materials from the ground to include quarrying, milling, crushing, screening, washing, and flotation of earthen materials, and other preparation customarily done at the extraction site or as a part of the extractive activity.
EXCAVATION, EXTRACTION, or MINING
The mechanical removal of rock, sand, gravel, clay, and similar materials for commercial purposes.
FAMILY
A person or persons related by blood, marriage, or other legal means. See also "household."
FAST-FOOD RESTAURANT
An establishment that serves food and beverages inside or outside the structure, generally in disposable containers, and where such food and beverages may be removed from the premises for consumption.
A. 
Low-income housing units insured or assisted under Sections 221(d)(3) and 236 of the National Housing Act [12 U.S.C. § 1701 et seq.].
B. 
Low-income housing units produced with assistance under Section 8 of the U.S. Housing Act of 1937 [42 U.S.C. § 1401 et seq.]; and
C. 
Rural low-income housing financed under Section 515 of the Housing Act of 1949 [12 U.S.C. § 1715Z].
FLOATING ZONE
An unmapped zoning district adopted within this chapter which is established on the Zoning Map only when an application for development meeting the zone requirements is approved.
FLOODPLAINS or FLOOD HAZARD AREA
As defined in R.I.G.L. § 45-22.2-4. An area that has a one-percent or greater chance of inundation in any given year, as delineated by the Federal Emergency Management Agency pursuant to the National Flood Insurance Act of 1968, as amended (P.L. 90-448) [42 U.S.C. § 4011 et seq.].
FRONTAGE
The length of any one property line of a premises, which property line abuts a legally accessible right-of-way, not burdened by access easement, across which access is legally and physically available for pedestrians and vehicles; or, in the case of a corner lot, all sides of a lot adjacent to street rights-of-way shall be considered frontage.
GARAGE
A building or structure, or part thereof, used or intended to be used for the storage of vehicles.
GRADE
The lowest point of elevation of the finished surface of the ground, paving, or sidewalk within the area between the structure and the property line.
GROCERY STORE
A commercial establishment that sells food, food kindred products, and household goods, and that has a gross floor area of 10,000 square feet or less.
GROSS FLOOR AREA
The sum of the total horizontal areas of the several floors of all buildings on a lot, measured from the interior faces of the exterior walls, but shall not include floor space that provides less than six feet of structural headroom, interior parking spaces, or loading areas for motor vehicles.
GROUNDWATER
"Groundwater" and associated terms, as defined in R.I.G.L. § 46-13.1-3.
HALFWAY HOUSES
A residential facility for adults or children who have been institutionalized for criminal conduct and who require a group setting to facilitate the transition to a functional member of society.
HARDSHIP
A set of unique characteristics of land or structures that result in an inability to conform with the standards and requirements of this chapter. Hardship shall not include consideration of the characteristics of surrounding land, or physical or economic disability of an applicant.
HAZARDOUS WASTE
A waste or combination of wastes of a solid, liquid, contained gaseous, or semisolid form which because of its quantity, concentration or physical, chemical or infectious characteristics may:
A. 
Cause or significantly contribute to an increase in mortality or an increase in serious irreversible or incapacitating reversible illness; or
B. 
Pose a substantial present or potential hazard to human health or the environment; or such wastes which include, but are not limited to, those which are toxic, corrosive, flammable, irritants, strong sensitizers, substances which are assimilated or concentrated in and are detrimental to tissue, or which generate pressure through decomposition or chemical reaction.
HISTORIC DISTRICT or HISTORIC SITE
As defined in R.I.G.L. § 45-22.2-4. "Historic district" means one or more historic sites and intervening or surrounding property significantly affecting or affected by the quality and character of the historic site or sites, and has been registered, or is deemed eligible to be included, on the state register of historical places pursuant to R.I.G.L. § 42-45-5. "Historic site" means any real property, man-made structure, natural object, or configuration or any portion or group of the foregoing which has been registered, or is deemed eligible to be included, on the state register of historic places pursuant to R.I.G.L. § 42-45-5.
HOUSEHOLD
One or more persons living together in a single dwelling unit, with common access to, and common use of, all living and eating areas and all areas and facilities for the preparation and storage of food within the dwelling unit. The term "household unit" shall be synonymous with the term "dwelling unit" for determining the number of such units allowed within any structure on any lot in a zoning district. An individual household shall consist of any one of the following:
A. 
A family, which may also include servants and employees living with the family; or
B. 
A person or group of no more than five unrelated persons living together.
IMPERVIOUS SURFACE
A surface that has been compacted or covered with a layer of material so that it is highly resistant to infiltration by water, including surfaces such as compacted sand, gravel, or clay, as well as most conventionally surfaced streets, sidewalks, parking lots, and other similar structures.
IMPULSIVE NOISE
Sound of short duration, usually less than one second, with an abrupt onset and a rapid decay. Examples of impulsive noise include explosions and the discharge of firearms.
INCOMPATIBILITY OF LAND USES
An issue arising from the proximity or direct association of contradictory, incongruous, or discordant land uses or activities, including the impacts of noise, vibration, smoke, odors, toxic matter, and similar environmental conditions.
INDUSTRIAL ARTS
Craft products created through the use of tools or machinery for retail sale.
INFRASTRUCTURE
Facilities and services needed to sustain residential, commercial, industrial, institutional, and other activities.
JUNKYARD
A lot, land or structure, or part thereof, used primarily for the collecting, storage and sale of waste paper, rags, scrap metal or discarded material; or for the collecting, dismantling, storage and salvaging of three or more unregistered, inoperable motor vehicles or other materials. (This shall also refer to auto salvage yards).
KENNEL
An establishment licensed to operate a facility housing dogs, cats, or other household pets and where grooming, breeding, boarding, training, or selling of animals is conducted as a business.
LAND DEVELOPMENT PROJECT
A project in which one or more lots, tracts, or parcels of land are to be developed or redeveloped as a coordinated site for a complex of uses, units, or structures, including, but not limited to, planned development and/or cluster development for residential, commercial, institutional, recreational, open space, and/or mixed uses as provided for in this chapter.
LANDSCAPING
Any combination of living plants (such as grass, ground cover, shrubs, vines, hedges, or trees) and nonliving landscape material (such as rocks, pebbles, sand, mulch, walls, fences, or decorative paving materials).
LODGING HOUSE
A building with more than two but not more than 10 guest rooms where lodging, with or without meals, is provided for compensation.
LOT
Either:
A. 
The basic development unit for determination of lot area, depth, and other dimensional regulations; or
B. 
A parcel of land whose boundaries have been established by some legal instrument such as a recorded deed or recorded map and which is recognized as a separate legal entity for purposes of transfer of title.
LOT AREA
The total area within the boundaries of a lot, excluding any street right-of-way, usually reported in acres or square feet.
LOT COVERAGE
That portion of the lot that is or may be covered by buildings, accessory buildings and impervious surfaces.
LOT DEPTH
The distance measured from the front lot line to the rear lot line. For lots where the front and rear lot lines are not parallel, the lot depth is an average of the depth.
LOT LINE
A line of record, bounding a lot, which divides one lot from another lot or from a public or private street or any other public or private space and shall include:
A. 
The lot line separating a lot from a street right-of-way.
B. 
The lot line opposite and most distant from the front lot line, or in the case of triangular or otherwise irregularly shaped lots, an assumed line at least 10 feet in length entirely within the lot, parallel to and at a maximum distance from the front lot line.
C. 
Any lot line other than a front or rear lot line. On a corner lot, a side lot line may be a street lot line.
LOT WIDTH
The horizontal distance between the side lines of a lot measured at right angles to its depth along a straight line parallel to the front lot line at the minimum front setback line.
LOT, THROUGH
A lot which fronts upon two parallel streets, or which fronts upon two streets which do not intersect at the boundaries of the lot.
MARIJUANA EXTRACTION
The use of butane, propane or other solvents for the purpose of extracting marijuana.
MARIJUANA STORE
Any retail or commercial establishment, or club, whether for-profit, nonprofit, or otherwise, at which the sale or use of marijuana in any form (other than for medical purposes) takes place. This shall include without limitation any so-called "vape lounge," "vapor lounge," or any other establishment at which medical marijuana is consumed in vaporized form.
MEDICAL MARIJUANA EMPORIUM
Any retail or commercial establishment, or club, whether for-profit, nonprofit, or otherwise, at which the sale or use of medical marijuana in any form takes place. This shall include without limitation any so-called "vape lounge," "vapor lounge," or any other establishment at which medical marijuana is consumed in vaporized form.
MIXED USE
A combination of residential, business, commercial, or industrial land uses within a single development, building, or tract.
MOBILE HOME
A transportable, single-family dwelling unit suitable for year-round occupancy and having a water supply and waste disposal system similar to immobile housing. A mobile home is designed to be transported on the streets and highways on its own wheels and arrive at the site where it is to be occupied as a dwelling unit complete and ready for occupancy. Removal of wheels and/or axles shall not change its status as a mobile home.
MOBILE HOME LOT
A lot located in a mobile home park used for the placement of a single mobile home and the exclusive use of its occupants.
MOBILE HOME PARK
A site with required improvements and utilities for the long-term parking of mobile homes which may include services and facilities for residents.
NIGHTTIME
The hours between 9:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m.
NONCONFORMANCE
A building, structure, or parcel of land, or use thereof, lawfully existing at the time of the adoption or amendment of this chapter and not in conformity with the provisions of such chapter or amendment. Nonconformance shall be of only two types:
A. 
Nonconforming by use: a lawfully established use of land, building, or structure which is not a permitted use in that zoning district. A building or structure containing more dwelling units than are permitted by the use regulations of this chapter shall be nonconforming by use; or
B. 
Nonconforming by dimension: a building, structure, or parcel of land not in compliance with the dimensional regulations of this chapter. Dimensional regulations include all regulations of this chapter, other than those pertaining to the permitted uses. A building or structure containing more dwelling units than are permitted by the use regulations of this chapter shall be nonconforming by use; a building or structure containing a permitted number of dwelling units by the use regulations of this chapter, but not meeting the lot area per dwelling unit regulations, shall be nonconforming by dimension.
OPEN SPACE
Any parcel or area of land or water set aside, dedicated, designated, or reserved for public or private use or enjoyment or for the use and enjoyment of owners and occupants of land adjoining or neighboring such open space; provided that the area may be improved with only those buildings, structures, streets, and off-street parks and other improvements that are designated to be incidental to the natural openness of the land.
ORNAMENTAL TREE
A deciduous tree planted primarily for its ornamental value or for screening purposes; tends to be smaller at maturity than a shade tree.
OVERLAY DISTRICT
A district established that is superimposed on one or more districts or parts of districts and that imposes specified requirements in addition to, but not less than, those otherwise applicable for the underlying zone.
OWNER
Any person who alone, jointly, or severally with others shall have legal or record title to any property; or shall have charge, care, or control of any property as agent, executor, trustee, or guardian.
PERFORMANCE STANDARDS
A set of criteria or limits relating to elements which a particular use or process either must meet or may not exceed.
PERIODIC NOISE
Sound which is not continuous, is of intermittent character, and may be cyclical in nature.
PERMITTED USE
A use by right which is specifically authorized in a particular zoning district.
PLANNED UNIT DEVELOPMENT (PUD)
A "land development project," as defined herein, and developed according to plan as a single entity and containing one or more structures and/or uses with appurtenant common areas.
PREAPPLICATION CONFERENCE
A review meeting of a proposed development held between applicants and reviewing agencies as permitted by law and this chapter, before formal submission of an application for a permit or for development approval.
RECREATIONAL, HOBBY, EDUCATION FARM ANIMAL RAISING
The raising of farm animals for appropriate 4-H activities, personal and household use or pleasure rather than for commercial enterprise.
REPAIR GARAGE
A building designed and used for the storage, care, repair, or refinishing of motor vehicles including both minor and major mechanical overhauling, paint and body work.
RESTORATION
The reasonable rehabilitation of the affected land for useful purposes and the protection of the natural resources of the surrounding area including surface and groundwaters.
SCREEN
A method of reducing the impact of noise and unsightly visual intrusions with less offensive or more harmonious elements such as plants, berms, fences, walls, or any appropriate combination thereof.
SERVICE STATION
Any premises where gasoline and other petroleum products are sold and/or light maintenance activities such as engine tuneups, lubrication, minor repairs, and carburetor cleaning are conducted. Service stations shall not include premises where heavy automobile maintenance activities such as engine overhauls, automobile painting, and body fender work are conducted.
SETBACK LINE OR LINES
A line or lines parallel to a lot line at the minimum distance of the required setback for the zoning district in which the lot is located that establishes the area within which the principal structure must be erected or placed.
SHADE TREE
Usually a deciduous tree planted primarily for its high crown of foliage or overhead canopy.
SHOPPING CENTER
A group of three or more contiguous commercial establishments, planned, developed, owned, and managed as a single unit with off-street parking provided on the same lot.
SHRUB
A woody plant, smaller than a tree, consisting of several small stems from the ground or small branches near the ground which can be either deciduous or evergreen.
SIGN
A structure or device designed or intended to convey information to the public in written or pictorial form.
SITE PLAN
The development plan for one or more lots on which is shown the existing and/or the proposed conditions of the lot.
SPECIAL USE
A regulated use which is permitted pursuant to the special use permit issued by the Coventry Zoning Board of Review. Formerly referred to as a special exception.
STORY
That portion of a building between the surface of any floor and the surface of the floor next above it or, if there is no floor above it, then the space between the highest floor and the top of the roof beams. A basement shall be counted as a story.
STRUCTURE
A combination of materials to form a construction for use, occupancy, or ornamentation, whether installed on, above, or below the surface of land or water.
SUBSTANDARD LOT OF RECORD
Any lot lawfully existing at the time of adoption or amendment of this chapter and not in conformance with the dimensional and/or area provisions of the Ordinance.
SUPERMARKET
A commercial establishment that sells food, food kindred products, and household goods, and that has a gross floor area in excess of 10,000 square feet. Such an establishment shall also be considered a supermarket if it sells items not customarily associated with grocery stores, regardless of size.
TOP SOIL
A presumed fertile soil or soil material that responds to fertilization, ordinarily rich in organic matter.
TRAILER
Any vehicle or any portable structure designed and constructed so as to permit the occupancy thereof as a dwelling by one or more persons and so designed and constructed that it is or may be mounted on wheels and used as a conveyance on a street or highway, propelled or drawn by its own or other motive power.
UNSTABLE SOILS
Any soil, as defined by the United States Geological Survey, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, or the Soil Conservation Service, that is prone to cause erosion or sedimentation, or that is incapable of supporting structures due to engineering concerns.
UPLAND
Land which is not a wetland as defined in R.I.G.L. § 2-1-20.
USE
The purpose or activity for which land or structures are designed, arranged, or intended, or for which land or structures are occupied or maintained.
VARIANCE
Permission to depart from the literal requirements of this chapter. An authorization for the construction or maintenance of a building or structure, or for the establishment or maintenance of a use of land, which is prohibited by this chapter.
A. 
There shall be only two categories of variance, a use variance or a dimensional variance.
(1) 
Permission to depart from the use requirements of this chapter where the applicant for the requested variance has shown, by evidence upon the record, that the subject land or structure cannot yield any beneficial use if it is to conform to the provisions of this chapter.
(2) 
Permission to depart from the dimensional requirements of this chapter, where the applicant for the requested relief has shown, by evidence upon the record, that there is no other reasonable alternative way to enjoy a legally permitted beneficial use of the subject property unless granted the requested relief from the dimensional regulations.
B. 
However, the fact that a use may be more profitable or that a structure may be more valuable after the relief is granted shall not be grounds for relief.
WATERS
As defined in R.I.G.L. § 46-12-1(b).
WETLAND, FRESHWATER
As defined in R.I.G.L. § 2-1-20. A marsh, swamp, bog, pond, river, river or stream floodplain or bank, area subject to flooding or storm flowage; emergent or submergent plant community in any body of fresh water; or area within 50 feet of the edge of a bog, marsh, swamp, or pond, as defined in R.I.G.L. § 2-1-20.
WOODLANDS
Existing trees and shrubs of a number, size, and species that accomplish the same general function as new plantings.
YARD
A space on the same lot with a main building, open, unoccupied and unobstructed by buildings or structures from the ground up, except as otherwise provided in this chapter.
YARD, FRONT
The area between a street line and a line parallel thereto, drawn through the nearest point of a main structure, extending between side lot lines. On a corner lot, there shall be only one front yard; the other potential front yard shall be considered a corner side yard.
YARD, REAR
An area extending across the full width of the lot between the rearmost main building and the rear lot line, the depth of which shall be the least distance between the rear lot line and the rear of such main building.
YARD, SIDE
The area between the main building and the side lot line, extended from the front yard or front lot line where no front yard is required, to the rear yard. The width of the required side yard shall be measured horizontally from the nearest point of the side lot line toward the nearest point of the main building.
ZONING CERTIFICATE
A document signed by the Zoning Enforcement Officer, as required by this chapter, which acknowledges that a use, structure, building or lot either complies with or is legally nonconforming to the provisions of this chapter or is an authorized variance, special use permit or administrative variance therefrom.
ZONING ENFORCEMENT OFFICER
The person charged with enforcing this chapter.
ZONING MAP
The map or maps which are a part of this chapter and which delineate the boundaries of all mapped zoning districts within the physical boundary of the Town of Coventry.
ZONING USE DISTRICTS
The basic unit in zoning to which a uniform set of regulations applies, or a uniform set of regulations for a specified use.