WAXAHACHIE

The Waxahachie City Council has directed city staff to bring forward a zoning ordinance amendment in January that would allow existing single-family residences to continue to operate in zoning districts where they were not previously recognized.

The council approved a support resolution that declared the zoning amendment during their meeting Monday night. According to the memorandum, the zoning ordinance was updated on May 21 to create new zoning districts and modify the types of uses in some districts. One of those updates included eliminating single-family uses in some communities, allowing pre-existing single family uses to continue as legal non-conformities.

Last month, property owners from 420 Ovilla Road raised concerns about their home being treated as an existing legal non-conformity. They are currently under contract with their home and are scheduled to close on their property on Dec. 21.

However, the owners have expressed concerns that lending institutions may not allow individuals to borrow money for homes that are classified as legal non-conformities.

To address this, staff will bring forward a zoning ordinance amendment during the city council in January that will allow for existing single-family residences to continue to operate, under the condition that the property is continuously used as a single-family residence.

“The support resolution is a good faith effort to provide the property owners and the individuals under contract to purchase their property assurance that single-family uses will be permitted until such time as they are willingly changed to another allowable use,” assistant city manager Tommy Ludwig writes in the memorandum.

The city council unanimously approved the measure without further discussion. The zoning amendment will be drafted and brought again before the council on Jan. 22.