Thursday, October 08, 2009

It's The Little Things

I don't know enough about Philly's zoning rules/process to have any grand thoughts and opinions, but I do hope this is true.

A hoped-for bottom line at the Zoning Board of Adjustment: regular homeowners will be able to build a roof deck, or a screened-in back porch, and not expect to face the Spanish Inquisition for permission to do so.

When I was househunting, I considered one property which didn't have a roofdeck or what I considered to be sufficient "yard" space, and looked into what it would take to add one. Basically, as I understand it, you'd need a zoning variance as the deck would officially count as an extra floor. Such variances go through neighborhood groups first, and for some reason many people in these groups have decided that roof decks are "ugly" and don't like them, so it's a bit of a time consuming uphill battle. A roof deck is a nice amenity in an urban hellhole, and I don't really know why they're considered to be ugly, but whatever.

Bring on the roofdecks!