Condo ordinance considered

The Ashland Planning Commission will discuss a revision to the proposed condominium conversion ordinance that was sent back for alterations by the Ashland City Council recently.

The meeting is tonight at 7 p.m. in the council chambers, 1175 East Main St.

Brandon Goldman, Ashland's housing specialist, said the changes to the ordinance, originally proposed by a subcommittee of the Ashland Housing Commission and the planning commission, are designed to assuage complaints from both property rights and affordable housing advocates.

Under the proposal, a property owner may convert an apartment complex into condos without providing any additional affordable housing units if the complex meet all the existing city ordinances, Goldman said.

"This resolves the issue of whether the city can require affordability," he said.

If an apartment complex does not meet all of Ashland's land use laws, it could still be converted into a condominium complex, but it would have to provide a certain amount of "market rate rental stock," according to Goldman.

The number of units that would have to remain market rate rentals would be determined on a sliding scale, Goldman said.

"The smaller the apartment complex, the greater number of ownership units one could do," he said. "Conversely, the larger the complex, the more would remain as rentals."

The existing condo conversion ordinance allows owners to sell some units if they are sold at certain price range. The proposed ordinance eliminates this option, with an exception for complexes with under four units.

"We've taken ownership off the table except for a complex of four units or less," Goldman said.

The planning commission will also discuss its goals for the next year, revisions to some of its procedures &

including what kind of development proposals are to be deliberated by the commission and which can be handled by staff &

and the format for public hearings.

Staff writer can be reached at 482-3456 x. 226 or .

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