Planning Board Hearing – Proposed Amendments to Zoning Ordinance

January 3, 2024 @ 5:30 pm – 7:30 pm
Crapo Building
1411 Route 117

Hearing concerning the following amendments proposed for the Zoning Ordinance of the Town of Sugar Hill, New Hampshire:
Proposed Amendment No. 1 would reduce the required width of a parking space from 12 ft. to 9 ft. which is a more typical standard (Sections 1506 and 1602), make the requirement for all residential uses be 2 spaces per dwelling unit, except one space for accessory dwelling units, and provide the Planning Board with some flexibility in determining the required number of parking spaces for nonresidential uses (Section 1504).
Proposed Amendment No. 2 would correct the terminology used in the Zoning Ordinance to differentiate between two-family dwellings and multifamily dwellings, eliminate the need for a two-family dwelling to have double the acreage of a single-family dwelling, and eliminate the requirement for a Special Exception from the Zoning Board of Adjustment in order to convert an existing single-family dwelling to a two-family dwelling. (Articles 3, 4, 14, 15 and 16)
The Zoning Ordinance currently allows the Zoning Board of Adjustment to grant a Special Exception for a multifamily dwelling in the GR or RR1 Districts. In these Districts, Proposed Amendment No. 3 would provide the opportunity for the owner of a two-family dwelling to apply for a Special Exception to add one accessory dwelling unit to a two-family dwelling, or for the owner of a single-family dwelling to add a second accessory dwelling unit under certain conditions. (Article 3)
Proposed Amendment No. 4 would make two changes to increase the opportunity to add an accessory dwelling unit. The first change would remove the requirement that property with an accessory dwelling unit must be owner-occupied. The second change would allow a lot that does not meet the current minimum lot size to have an accessory dwelling unit in an existing accessory building if it is within the existing footprint and in compliance with setbacks. Would also remove provisions inconsistent with state law. (Articles 3, 14A and 16)
Proposed Amendment No. 5 would reduce the required minimum number of homes in a Cluster Development from 5 to 3, and enable the Planning Board to reduce frontage and setbacks within a Cluster Development, provided there is at least a 50-foot separation distance between dwellings, and to increase setbacks and/or require screening from abutting properties and existing roads. Would also provide more guidance regarding use of the protected open space in a Cluster Development. (Article 6)
Proposed Amendment No. 6 would establish Short-Term Rentals as a Permitted Use in any single-family dwelling (except those in a cluster development), and in one unit only in an owner-occupied two-family dwelling or owner-occupied single-family dwelling with an accessory dwelling unit (Articles 3 and 16). A Zoning Permit would be required to ensure that some basic health and safety requirements are met (New Article and Section 1701).
Proposed Amendment No. 7 would make revisions throughout the Zoning Ordinance to update references to state laws and agencies; make minor editorial corrections; eliminate redundancy and conflicts; clarify language; add elements in accord with state laws and court decisions regarding accessory dwelling units, signs, and Board of Adjustment powers; and update certain language to conform with the current application of the Ordinance.
The complete text of the amendments is available for review on the Town website at and in the Select Board Office during regular business hours. Written comments must be received by the hearing to be considered.

Mail to: Sugar Hill Planning Board, PO Box 574, Sugar Hill NH 03586.
Planning Board, Sugar Hill

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