I have received several follow-up questions regarding my last blog entitled: “Shouldn’t Single-Family Low-Density Neighborhoods Continue in ReCode?” Many have asked how the first ReCode draft impacts specific neighborhoods other than those mentioned in the article. While I am unable to address every neighborhood in any one post, it makes sense to broaden our look at the potential impact Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) may have in several neighborhoods. If you have questions about a specific neighborhood, you can look up additional information at www.kgis.org. Look up your address and then select the zoning map on the left under planning and zoning maps.
In the 2nd District, Timbercrest and Farview Hills are currently zoned R1. The same is true for Middlebrook Heights, which is mainly located in the 6th District. Westwood and Forrest Heights are currently zoned R1E. As these neighborhoods are currently zoned R1 and R1E, ADUs are currently not permitted. However, in the first ReCode draft they would be allowed by right in these and all other residential zones.
I’ve also been asked about other neighborhoods outside the 2nd District. In general, ADUs are currently permitted downtown. As for specific neighborhoods outside of the 2nd District, ADUs are permitted in Parkridge, Edgewood Heights, and 4th and Gill, as these neighborhoods are all currently zoned R1A. The proposed changes in the first draft of ReCode would have no impact on the availability of ADUs in any of these areas, as they currently allow for garage apartments accessory to the principal dwelling by right. Follow this link to review permitted uses in R1A here.
The question about ADUs isn’t about exclusion. It’s a question of how neighborhoods were designed and what kind of use their infrastructure can support. I believe we should have a variety of residential options in Knoxville. I also believe that we shouldn’t make significant changes to those designated low-density single-family neighborhoods without some serious thought and discussion about the potential impact of this change.
As I referenced in the the last Council Workshop, many in R1 and R1E neighborhoods aren’t currently interested in changing their zone to R1A, which would allow them to have ADUs. With this in mind, why not offer subzones like RN-1A with no ADUs, and RN-1E with no Duplexes or ADUs, while allowing ADUs in RN-1? The addition of these subzones would allow for continued diversity in residential options in our community.
With all of the debate surrounding this important issue, I believe that additional public input and discussion is needed. I look forward to continuing to explore this issue with my neighbors in District 2 as well as city-wide.