City of Oswego, NY
Oswego County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
A. 
These provisions shall apply to all nonconforming uses existing on the effective date of this chapter and to uses that become nonconforming by reason of any amendment thereof and to buildings or other structures housing such uses.
B. 
Continuance. Any nonconforming use may be continued indefinitely, except as hereinafter provided.
C. 
Abandonment.
[Amended 12-10-2012; 6-10-2013]
(1) 
If active and continuous operations or occupancy are ceased by a nonconforming use for an uninterrupted period of one calendar year or more, the building, structure or lot occupied by such nonconforming use shall immediately thereafter and henceforth be eligible for or occupied by only conforming uses.
(2) 
Notwithstanding the provisions of § 280-81C(1), if a prior nonconforming use has ceased its nonconforming use for one year or more, the owner may apply to the Zoning Board of Appeals for a special permit to use the building, structure or lot for the purpose that it was originally constructed.
(3) 
In making its decision, the Zoning Board of Appeals shall consider the following criteria:
(a) 
Whether the owner can establish the original constructed use of the building or structure to justify reinstatement of the nonconforming use.
(b) 
Whether the owner has adequate parking on the property available to meet the requirements of § 280-52 of the Zoning Ordinance.
(c) 
Whether the proposed use of the building, structure or lot is in harmony with the neighborhood and will not adversely increase the population and vehicular density of the neighborhood.
(d) 
Whether the proposed use of the building, structure or lot is the most economically viable alternative to reestablish the original use of the property.
(e) 
Whether it is necessary that the special permit be granted with conditions.
D. 
Change to another nonconforming use. A nonconforming use may be changed to another nonconforming use by special permit from the Board of Appeals, if the Board deems the proposed nonconforming use to be sufficiently similar in nature to the existing nonconforming use and closer in character to surrounding conforming uses than is the existing nonconforming use.
E. 
Extension. A nonconforming use shall not be enlarged or extended or relocated to a different position on the lot which it occupies.
[Amended 6-14-1993]
F. 
Any nonconforming use, as hereinbefore or hereinafter referred to, is an affirmative defense in any action or proceeding.
[Added 3-14-1983]
G. 
In an Industrial District included in an Economic Development Zone (EDZ), an existing nonconforming residential use may be continued with respect to the same number of existing one-family dwellings situate on the premises; however, the size of the one-family dwellings and accessory uses shall not be subject to the requirements of Subsection E of this section.
[Amended 7-10-1995]
If a nonconforming use and a building or other structure of nonconforming bulk sustains an amount of damage or destruction by any cause, which amount is officially appraised to be 75% or more of its true value, the building, other structure or tract of land shall thereafter be eligible for and occupied by only a conforming use, and the damaged portions of the building or other structure shall, if rebuilt or reconstructed, conform to pertinent use and bulk regulations for that district.
A. 
Maintenance and repairs. Customary maintenance of a building or other structure containing a nonconforming use is permitted, including necessary nonstructural repairs and minor alterations, so long as they do not increase or expand the nonconforming use.
B. 
Structural alterations. No structural alterations are permitted, except when required by law or when adapting or remodeling a building or other structure for a conforming use.
A. 
Changes or alterations. Buildings and structures which are only nonconforming in bulk may be altered, moved, reconstructed or enlarged, provided that each change does not increase the degree of, or create any new, nonconforming bulk in such building and does not violate any other provisions of this chapter.
B. 
Reduction in lot area. No lot shall be reduced in area so that it creates a nonconforming bulk or use in violation of any regulations contained in this chapter.
Any vacant lot in a residence district with an area or width less than the minimum required by the district regulation in which it is located and which is not adjoined by another vacant lot under the same ownership may be used for:
A. 
A one-family residence, provided that the following minimum standards are met:
(1) 
Lot area minimum: 3,800 square feet.
(2) 
Lot width at building line: 40 feet.
(3) 
Front yard: 25 feet.
(4) 
Rear yard: 25 feet.
(5) 
Side yards: 14 feet total, four feet minimum.
(6) 
Maximum coverage: 30%.
(7) 
Maximum building height: three stories or 35 feet, whichever is less.
(8) 
Minimum habitable floor area: 650 square feet, excluding basement.
(9) 
Supplementary regulations: as set forth in Article V.
B. 
Parking and garage, provided that site plan approval is obtained from the Planning Board and landscaping and screening is installed.
A. 
Nonconforming signs shall be removed when the use of the property on which the sign is located is discontinued.
B. 
Nonconforming signs may not be enlarged, extended, relocated or altered in any way, except to make them conform to provisions of this chapter. This provision shall not restrict routine maintenance of nonconforming signs involving replacement of electrical parts and repainting.