Land Use
 

Yards paved to make un-permitted parking spaces dominate One Stop agenda

Unpermitted parking spaces at 4007 Prytania St. protrude out over the sidewalk. The building owner seeks a waiver to make them legal, years after they were created.

Karen Gadbois

Car tailgates protrude out over the sidewalk from un-permitted parking spaces at 4007 Prytania St. The building owner seeks a waiver to make them legal, years after they were created.

Of 12 cases scheduled to be heard at Wednesday’s One Stop adjudication hearing, at least seven are for yard-paving violations.

One property, at 4007 Prytania St., has no fewer than 15 parking spaces. Installed without permits, they cover the front and side yards in their entirety.

According to a City Planning Staff report the paving took place some time “after Hurricane Katrina,” and the city informed the owner of the violations in March 2009.

The February 2012 staff report was created in advance of the Board of Zoning Adjustments hearing at which Rosenblat Properties LLC applied for a waiver to allow the illegally installed spaces to remain.

The request was denied “with prejudice” — meaning, don’t come back with the same request. Ever.

In September of the same year “the applicant appeared before the Planning Advisory Committee to lease the public right-of way surrounding the site” — i.e. the sidewalk. They were denied a lease of servitude.

Despite the official rejection, the parking spaces have remained in use and the side yards remain paved; the front-yard paving was removed in 2011, according to the report.

Hearing officers may levy fines of up to $500 a day until the violations are corrected.

Aesthetics aside, paved yards — whether legal or illegal — contribute to flooding and runoff problems in a city half of which is below sea level and all of which is afflicted with severe water-management problems.

The One Stop Adjudication hearings begin at 9 a.m. at the One Stop offices, 7th floor of City Hall.

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