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Legalize It: Austin Eases Restrictions on Accessory Dwelling Units
Jennifer Curington reports that the "Austin City Council agreed to lessen restrictions on accessory dwelling units, or ADUs."
"Changes approved by council allow ADUs to be located 10 feet from each property’s main home instead of 15 feet as currently required by city law," reports Curington. "Also, the minimum lot size required to build an ADU has been reduced from 7,000 square feet to 5,740 square feet, and the structure cannot be larger than 1,100 square feet." The article also provides a lot of detail about the limitations on the use of ADUs.
ADUs are usually a hot button politically when communities consider easy ways to ease land use regulations and add density. The politics of the issue in Austin followed a traditional playbook: "Proponents of the changes said ADUs could be used as a tool to tackle Austin’s affordability crisis, and opponents expressed concern about preserving neighborhood character and allowing code changes that may override some neighborhood plans." In the end, the City Council decided to update the ADU regulations before the city completes the CodeNEXT overhaul of its zoning code.