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County commission: No more homes at Baymeadows under 1,400 square feet

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County commission: No more homes at Baymeadows under 1,400 square feet Photo courtesy trulia.com

At Monday morning’s regular county commission meeting, commissioners voted to approve a text amendment to the land development code specifically for Baymeadows subdivision. Commissioners unanimously approved an overlay exception for Baymeadows requiring a minimum of 1,400 square feet of heated floor space to build a home.

According to Ray Parker, county code enforcement officer, there have been no minimum square footage requirements for homes at Baymeadows. County attorney Tony Rowell stated that in the early days of the subdivision, there were deed restrictions on each deed that stipulated a minimum of 1,400 square feet for homes. Those deed restrictions have expired, he said, and there are no longer any such requirements. Parker stated that of late, several smaller homes have been built in the subdivision.

Several residents of Baymeadows addressed the commission, all of whom were in favor of the amendment. Nearly all also asked if the minimum square footage could be raised to 1,600 or 1,700 square feet. “The only issue today is 1,400 square feet,” said Rowell. He added that 1,400 square feet was the magic number of the day because of the legal process the county had undertaken to draft and advertise the amendment and because commissioners wanted to keep the amendment consistent with guidelines in other areas of the community. The commissioners felt as though 1,400 square feet struck a good balance between 1,000 square feet, which is what other residential areas must follow, and the 1,600 square feet many Baymeadows residents wanted.

After hearing from seven people who live at Baymeadows, the commission approved the amendment unanimously. Any building permits currently approved for under 1,400 square feet will be honored. Moving forward, the county will grant no other sub-1,400 square foot permits. According to Parker, there are only two such permits that have been approved.

Residents also asked commissioners to consider taking action on other issues facing Baymeadows, most notably people running businesses out of homes, metal buildings/mechanic shops that have been built or are considered being built, speeders, and people driving big trucks through the subdivision. Rowell stated that the county will indeed look into those issues.

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