Legal Question in Construction Law in California

comercial construction in a residential area

does the comercial property need to have a privacy wall

Asked on 8/07/07, 11:33 am

2 Answers from Attorneys

Bryan Whipple Bryan R. R. Whipple, Attorney at Law

Re: comercial construction in a residential area

This is all governed by your community's zoning laws and policies it has developed for granting use permits. If an area is zoned for strictly residential use, no commercial use of property is legal. So, this is probably mixed-use zoning, or perhaps two different but adjoining zones, one allowing of favoring commercial use.

In many zoning systems, commercial activity on a limited scale is permissible within a primarily residential neighborhood, often requiring a use permit for each commercial use. At the time the property owner applies for a use permit, there can be hearings to determine neighbor concerns, and the property owner will be required to furnish plans, etc. for comment and criticism.

At that point the local authorities can impose requirements for the issuance of the use permit. Those requirements might be a privacy wall, or maybe limits on the hours of operation, or requirements for additional off-street parking, or whatever seems reasonable to protect the character and quality of the neighborhood without unduly crippling the right of the property owner to put his property to profitable use.

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Answered on 8/07/07, 11:57 am

Jim Schaefer Schaefer & Associates

Re: comercial construction in a residential area

Mr. Whipple's answer is right on this issue. I would simply add that you visit your local zoning department and building and safety department and provide them with the address and ask them what requirements are needed for fencing as it relates to privacy. Good luck.

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Answered on 8/07/07, 12:45 pm

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