Homeowners whose yard is trafficked by criminals win OK for larger fence
Published: April 27, 2011
Time posted: 11:24 am
Tags: Alex Cruz, Charlotte Department of Transportation, Charlotte Zoning Board of Adjustment, Katrina Young
Two Charlotte homeowners were granted a zoning variance Tuesday after they built a wooden fence to help keep trespassers out of their yard.
James and Gwendolyn Miller, of 8812 Nations Ford Road, told the Zoning Board of Adjustment Tuesday that they constructed the fence to keep busy pedestrian traffic out of their yard.
The fence is as tall as 9 feet in some sections where their yard slopes downward. The maximum height allowed for a fence in a residential neighborhood is between 5 and 8 feet, depending on whether the fence is in the front, side or backyard.
The Millers live near the intersection of Nations Ford and Arrowood Road, which Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Officer Alex Cruz told the board has been the site of numerous arrests and crime-related problems.
Cruz said there were 11 arrests in the area Friday, and eight of those were for felony drug charges.
Police have caught individuals in the Miller family’s backyard, which is also used for a shortcut for fleeing suspects. Cruz said the Millers face that problem daily.
Staff members with the city’s zoning department supported the variance for the Millers because of a neighboring convenience store. When a commercial land use is next to a residential one, a fence is required as a buffer. There is no height restrictions for fences in such situations, Katrina Young, zoning administrator, said.
The board unanimously approved the request.
But the Charlotte Department of Transportation will examine the site to ensure that a portion of the fence at the front of the property is not restricting vision for motorists pulling into the road from the convenience store.