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Ocean City Homes Residents to Have Say in Building Heights Debate

Council limited attic height for homes in the neighborhood to six feet at Thursday night's meeting.

The residents of the Ocean City Homes neighborhood will have their say in the ongoing debate over building height in their neighborhood.

In the meantime, Ocean City Council unanimously passed an ordinance that caps attic height at six feet at its meeting Thursday night at the library.

The vote came after the Planning Board previously approved an expansion to nine feet at the request of a home owner in the neighborhood.

The discussion concerning overall building size, initiated at the Feb. 13 meeting, continued, though.

“We’re seeing homes go up in Ocean City Homes that are just huge,” Councilman Scott Ping said, adding that homes in the neighborhood traditionally have not had attics.

He argued homes in the neighborhood have always been a specific size, and attic height should be limited to preserve that tradition. He also said homes are being raised in the area following Superstorm Sandy, and that will provide storage space underneath

Councilman Keith Hartzell added the size of the homes with the attic must remain in character with what has already been established in the development.

"You have a home at 54th and Haven being built that's bigger than all the other homes," resident Bill Stanton said during the public comment portion. "The house next to it was just raised, and it's still dwarfed by this new home. You have to look at height requirements. It's a nice area, and we'd like to maintain that look."

“This ordinance is for attic height, but now you’re discussing building height,” City Attorney Dottie McCrosson said, suggesting a separate ordinance may be needed to tackle that issue.

Resident George Savastano spoke at the meeting, stating an additional three feet in attic height would not be visible from the street, but would make a difference to those who live in the neighborhood. While many in the neighborhood may not have an attic, he does have one.

Council members agreed more community input was needed. While Councilman Peter Guinosso insisted he already held a focus group with members of the community on the issue, Hartzell said he’d like to hold a meeting that all members of the neighborhood are invited to.

He said he would be willing to go door-to-door and tell people about the meeting.

Ultimately, Council President Anthony Wilson suggested Hartzell and Guinosso get together with Business Administrator Mike Datillo and set up a meeting for the residents and city planning officials.

lovesmancos April 01, 2014 at 05:06 PM
Storage can now be UNDER the homes? Yeah, like the next floods won't effect that either, right? Attics are a stupid idea anyway...always built too hard to get to. Fortunately the ones I lived in when in OC actually were summertime rooms. Storage rooms should be made MORE accessible on the same levels that people LIVE on, not put above or below making it an arduous task to retrieve! And it you don't want it anyway, throw it out or have it hauled away! Somebody will take it. There's nothing to SEE around OC that needs ANY limits put to it, and arbitrarily so by those who already infest...I mean inhabit the island. It wasn't designed by God to be SEEN. Just relaxed on. Let them heighten it all they want near the beach, to keep down the summer NOISE from the boardwalk and beaches. THAT would make more sense, no? So greedy!
EF April 01, 2014 at 05:19 PM
whoa..
Bill Hartranft April 01, 2014 at 07:58 PM
I keep seeing homes being built that will cause nose bleeds to people. It's a vacation place..not a MacMansion area. Or should be...

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