Chapter 16.04


16.04.010    Purpose—General standards for plat approval.

16.04.020    Definitions.

16.04.030    Applicability.

16.04.040    Sale of land prior to compliance with this title prohibited.

16.04.050    Compliance with title required prior to issuance of permits.

16.04.060    Variances.

16.04.070    Appeals.

16.04.080    Fees.

16.04.090    Notification requirements.

16.04.010 Purpose—General standards for plat approval.

The purpose of this title is to promote the public health, safety and general welfare of the residents of the city. These regulations are made with consideration, among other things, of the character of and conditions in Valdez with consideration to conserving the value of buildings and property, and providing the best possible conditions and safety for the people of Valdez.

A.    The platting authority may approve a preliminary or final plat only if it finds that the plat:

1.    Conforms to the provisions of this title and other applicable city ordinances;

2.    Promotes the public health, safety and welfare;

3.    Mitigates the effects of incompatibilities between land uses or residential densities in the subdivision and the land uses and residential densities in the surrounding neighborhood, including, but not limited to visual, noise, traffic and environmental effects;

4.    Provides for the proper arrangement of streets in relation to existing or proposed streets;

5.    Provides for the efficient movement of vehicular and pedestrian traffic;

6.    Assures adequate and properly placed utilities;

7.    Provides access for emergency vehicles;

8.    Facilitates the orderly and efficient layout and use of land;

9.    Furthers the goals and policies of the comprehensive development plan, the coastal management plan and other adopted city policies and plans.

B.    The platting authority may impose conditions upon the approval of a preliminary or final plat that it finds necessary to conform the plat to the standards of this chapter. (Ord. 96-27 § 1 (part): Ord. 93-03 § 1 (part): prior code § 24-1)

16.04.020 Definitions.

A.    For the purposes of this title, any word or term not interpreted or defined by this section shall be used with a meaning of common or standard utilization.

B.    The following words and phrases shall have the meanings respectively ascribed to them by this section:

“Buildable area” means the area on a lot within all setback lines and easements which restrict building.

“City engineer” means the city engineer for the city of Valdez.

“Commission” means the planning and zoning commission of the city of Valdez.

“Director” means the director of the Valdez department of community development or designee.

“Plat” means the map prepared, as required by this title, for the purpose of recording subdivisions or other divisions of land as provided in this title.

“Platting authority” means the planning and zoning commission.

“Street” means a way for vehicular traffic.

1.    “Major streets” are the roadways which serve as the principal arteries of through traffic movement. They are generally high speed highways with limited access.

2.    “Collector streets” are those which carry traffic from minor streets to the system of major streets including the principal entrance streets of a residential development and streets for circulation within such a development.

3.    “Minor streets” are those which are used primarily for access to the abutting properties.

The official Valdez street map showing official classifications is on file with the director.

“Snow storage” means land dedicated to the city for the storage of snow. The amount of snow storage required to be dedicated is equal to one square foot of snow storage for every square foot of constructed street area, including sidewalks, but not less than a minimum street width of thirty feet.

“Subdivider” means the owner or agent of the owner of land which is being divided pursuant to this chapter.

“Subdivision” means the division of a tract or parcel of land into two or more or other divisions irrespective of their size before or after division and further includes the dedication to public use of a street or other specified area in or through a tract of land. Subdivision is not limited only to the conveyance of title but includes contracts to convey title, leases of land for ten or more years and conveyance by a metes and bounds description.

1.    “Major subdivision” is the creation of more than four lots.

2.    “Minor subdivision” is the creation of four lots or less or meeting the other requirements of Section 16.08.070.

“Surveyor” means a land surveyor registered and licensed in the state of Alaska. (Ord. 05-11 § 1; Ord. 96-27 § 1 (part): Ord. 93-03 § 1 (part): prior code § 24-2)

16.04.030 Applicability.

A.    1. This title applies to, except as provided in subsection B of this section, all subdivisions or resubdivisions which result in the partitioning, dividing, combining or altering of any lot, parcel or tract of land, including subdivisions or resubdivisions created by an exercise of the power of eminent domain by an agency of the state or municipality.

2.    No provision of this chapter applies to any lot or lots in a subdivision legally created and filed on record before the effective date of the provision, unless the lot or lots are further subdivided or resubdivided. Subdivisions given preliminary or final approval by the platting authority under regulations existing prior to this title shall comply only with the regulations existing at the time of that approval.

B.    Waivers. In individual cases and in accord with AS 29.40.090 the commission may exempt a subdivision from the requirements of this chapter when it finds that:

1.    Each parcel in the subdivision will have adequate physical and legal public access to a public highway or street; and

2.    Each parcel in the subdivision is five acres in size or larger and that the land is divided into four or fewer parcels; and

3.    The subdivision is not made for the purpose of, or in connection with, a present or projected subdivision development; and

4.    No dedication of any classification of a street or other public area is involved or required. (Ord. 05-11 § 2; Ord. 96-27 § 1 (part): Ord. 93-03 § 1 (part): prior code § 24-3)

16.04.040 Sale of land prior to compliance with this title prohibited.

No owner or agent of the owner of land located within a subdivision shall transfer, sell, offer to sell, or enter into a contract to sell land in a subdivision before a plat of the subdivision has been prepared, approved and recorded in compliance with this title. Each sale of a lot or parcel in violation of this section shall be a separate offense. The city may enjoin a transfer or sale or agreement to sell, and may recover the penalty therefor by appropriate legal action. (Ord. 96-27 § 1 (part): Ord. 93-03 § 1 (part): prior code § 24-4)

16.04.050 Compliance with title required prior to issuance of permits.

No building or occupancy permit shall be issued for a new building on a lot which did not exist as a described and recorded parcel on February 8, 1965, or that was not created by recorded subdivision pursuant to state statute, or by a recorded plat pursuant to provisions of this title. (Ord. 96-27 § 1 (part): Ord. 93-03 § 1 (part): prior code § 24-5)

16.04.060 Variances.

When, in the judgment of the commission, it would be inappropriate to apply literally a provision of this title the commission may waive or vary such provisions so that substantial justice may be done and the public interest secured; provided, that in no event shall the requirement of filing and recording the plat or survey map be waived. (Ord. 96-27 § 1 (part): Ord. 93-03 § 1 (part): prior code § 24-6)

16.04.070 Appeals.

Any person may file an appeal to the commission on a decision of the director within thirty days of such decision. Any person may file an appeal to the city council on a decision of the commission within thirty days of such decision. An appeal to the city council will be in compliance with Section 17.06.110 of this code, except that the time period in Section 17.06.110(A) shall be thirty days and the report in Section 17.06.110(B) shall be prepared by the director if it is the director’s decision being appealed. (Ord. 96-27 § 1 (part): Ord. 93-03 § 1 (part): prior code § 24-7)

16.04.080 Fees.

The council shall adopt by resolution a fee schedule for all actions, reviews and approval under this title. (Ord. 96-27 § 1 (part): Ord. 93-03 § 1 (part): prior code § 24-8)

16.04.090 Notification requirements.

A.    A notice shall be sent by mail at least ten days prior to the first scheduled meeting of the planning and zoning commission to consider the preliminary plat approval to each owner of property within a distance of three hundred feet of the exterior boundary of the lot or parcel described in the application for subdivision.

B.    Consideration of Evidence. The planning and zoning commission shall hear and consider evidence and facts from any person during preliminary and final plat approval or written communication from any person relative to the matter. The right of any person to present evidence shall not be denied for the reason that any such person was not required to be informed of such subdivision of land. (Ord. 03-10)