ARTICLE 14:  SUBDIVISION STANDARDS
Section
14.1   General
14.2   Lot standards
14.3   Streets
14.4   Sidewalks
14.5   Utilities
§ 14.1  GENERAL.
   14.1.1   Design. All proposed subdivisions, including group developments, shall comply with this article and shall be designed to promote beneficial development of the community, and shall bear a reasonable relationship to the approved plans of the town.
   14.1.2   Reasonable relationship. All required improvements, easements, and rights-of-way (other than required reservations) shall substantially benefit the development or bear a reasonable relationship to the need for public facilities attributable to the new development.
   14.1.3   Off-site connections. When, in the opinion of the approving body, it is necessary to connect streets and/or utilities off-site to adjoining streets and/or utilities, said improvements may be required in accordance with town policy.
   14.1.4   Land suitability. Land which has been determined, on the basis of an engineering assessment or other expert survey, to pose an ascertainable danger to life or property by reason of its unsuitability for the use proposed shall not be platted for that purpose until the subdivider has taken the necessary measures to correct said conditions and to eliminate said dangers. Areas that have been used for disposal of solid waste shall not be subdivided unless tests by the Granville-Vance District Health Department, a structural engineer, and a soils expert determine that the land is suitable for the purpose proposed.
   14.1.5   Placement of monuments. The Standards of Practice for Land Surveying in the state, as adopted by the state’s Board of Registration for Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors, shall apply when installing permanent monuments.
   14.1.6   Sites for public use. In subdividing property, due consideration shall be given by the subdivider to the reservation of suitable sites for schools and other public uses in accordance with G.S. § 160A-372.
   14.1.7   Property owners’ associations.
   (A)   Creation. An owners’ association shall be established to fulfill requirements of the state’s Condominium Act, being G.S. §§ 47C-1-101 et seq., state’s Planned Community Act, being G.S. 47F-1-101 et seq., or to accept conveyance and maintenance of all common elements (common areas) within a development. The owners’ association shall be in legal existence prior to the conveyance, lease-option, or other long-term transfer of control of any unit or lot in the development.
   (B)   Conveyance. Where developments have common elements serving more than one dwelling unit, these areas shall be conveyed to the owners’ association, in which all owners of lots in the development shall be members. All areas other than public street rights-of-way, other areas dedicated to the town, and lots shall be designated as common elements. In a condominium development the common elements shall be platted in accordance with the state’s Condominium Act. In other developments, the fee-simple title shall be conveyed by the subdivider or developer to the owners’ association prior to the sale of the first lot.
   (C)   Subdivision or conveyance of common elements. Common elements shall not subsequently be subdivided or conveyed by the owners’ association unless a revised preliminary plat and a revised final plat showing such subdivision or conveyance have been submitted and approved.
   (D)   Minimize number of associations. Developments, whether including different land uses, different types of housing, or simply different sections, shall hold the number of owners’ associations to a minimum. An association may establish different categories of membership, different budgets for the categories, and different rates of assessment when different kinds of services are provided to different categories. Smaller associations under an umbrella (master) association are permitted.
   (E)   Exemption from owners’ association requirement. A development involving only two units attached by a party wall (or two separate walls back-to-back) shall not be required to have common elements or an owners’ association. Such developments without an owners’ association shall establish a binding agreement between owners to govern any party walls and to ensure reciprocal easement rights needed for maintenance.
§ 14.2  LOT STANDARDS.
   The size, shape, and orientation of lots shall be appropriate for the location of the proposed subdivision and for the type of development contemplated and shall conform to the following.
   14.2.1   Conformance with other regulations. Every lot shall have sufficient area, dimensions, and street access to permit a principal building to be erected thereon in compliance with all zoning and other requirements of this ordinance.
   14.2.2   Minimum building area. Every lot shall have at least 40% of its total area, or 3,000 square feet, whichever is less, of contiguous buildable area of a shape sufficient to hold a principal building. Said area shall lie at or be filled to an elevation at least one foot above the 100-year flood elevation.
   14.2.3   Lot depth to width ratio. No lot shall have a depth greater than four times the width at the minimum front street setback.
   14.2.4   Side lot line configuration. Side lines of lots should be at or near right angles or radial to street lines.
   14.2.5   Lot lines and drainage. Lot boundaries shall coincide with natural and pre-existing human- made drainageways to the extent practicable to avoid lots that can be built upon only by altering such drainageways.
   14.2.6   Lots on thoroughfares. Major subdivisions shall not be approved that permit individual residential lots to access major or minor thoroughfares.
   14.2.7   Access requirements. All lots must have public street access and frontage meeting the requirements set forth in Article 6, Zoning, or as follows.
   (A)   Flag lots may be allowed only if the following requirements are met:
      (1)   A flag lot shall contain only one single-family dwelling and its uninhabited accessory structures;
      (2)   The maximum flagpole length shall be 300 feet;
      (3)   The minimum flagpole width shall be 25 feet;
      (4)   The maximum lot size in areas with public sewer shall be one acre;
      (5)   The maximum lot size without public sewer shall be three acres. (Note: the flagpole portion of the lot is not used to calculate area, width, depth, coverage, and setbacks of the lot or to provide off-street parking);
      (6)   Where public water is available, any building on the flag lot must be within 500 feet of a fire hydrant. This distance shall be measured along the street, then along the flagpole, then in a straight line to the building location;
      (7)   Where public sewer is available, occupied buildings on the flag lot shall have a gravity service line, or the sewer pump requirement shall be noted on the plat; and
      (8)   Use of a single driveway to serve adjoining flag lots or to serve a flag lot and an adjoining conventional lot is permitted and encouraged. In the latter case, the preferred location for the driveway is on the flagpole portion of the flag lot, with the conventional lot granted an access easement over the flagpole.
§ 14.3  STREETS.
   14.3.1   Dedication of right-of-way. Right-of-way for public streets shall be dedicated to the town pursuant to G.S. Ch. 160A, Art. 19, Part 2 and other applicable state laws. When dedication cannot be required, any future street right-of-way indicated on adopted thoroughfare plans or collector street plans shall be shown on the plat.
   14.3.2   Conformance with thoroughfare plans and collector street plans. The location and design of streets shall be in conformance with applicable thoroughfare plans and collector street plans. Where conditions warrant, right-of-way widths and pavement widths in excess of the minimum street standards may be required.
   14.3.3   Conformance with adjoining street systems. The planned street layout of a proposed subdivision shall be compatible with existing or proposed streets and their classifications on adjoining or nearby tracts.
   14.3.4   Internal street network connectivity.
   (A)   A minimum street connectivity index, as determined by the method outlined in division 14.3.4(B), shall be established for all new residential subdivisions. Within the RP and RR Districts, the minimum index score shall be 1.2, and within the RS, RT, and RMX Districts, the minimum index score shall be 1.4. Planned unit developments shall have a minimum index score of 1.5 for the entire street network serving the development.
   (B)   The street connectivity index shall be calculated by dividing the number of “links” contained in the network by the number of “nodes” contained in the network. For the purpose of this calculation, a “node” is the intersection of two streets or the head of a cul-de-sac within the development. “Links” are lengths of street that connect the nodes. Street stubs shall be considered to be links, but alleys and temporary dead-end streets within the development are not counted as links. One link beyond each node that connects the internal street network to the external street network shall be included in this calculation.
   (C)   The minimum connectivity index score may be reduced if the developer demonstrates that it is impossible or impractical to achieve the required score due to topography, environmental conditions, natural features, or adjacent existing development patterns.
   14.3.5   Access to adjoining property. Where, in the opinion of the approving body, it is desirable to provide for street access to adjoining property, proposed streets shall be extended to the boundary of such property.
   14.3.6   Minimum number of access points to public street network. The minimum number of points of street access shall be based on the number of dwelling units in the proposed development as set forth below.
   (A)   Residential developments with more than 50 lots or dwelling units shall have at least two separate points of public road access.
   (B)   Residential developments with more than 150 lots or dwelling units shall have at least three separate points of public road access.
   14.3.7   Reserve strips. Reserve strips adjoining street rights-of-way for the purpose of preventing access to adjacent property shall not be permitted under any condition.
   14.3.8   Public street design criteria. Public streets shall be constructed in accordance with the standards contained in the NCDOT Roadway Design Manual or the NCDOT Subdivision Roads Minimum Construction Standards as appropriate.
   14.3.9   Private street design criteria.
   (A)   Where permitted. Private streets shall be permitted in single-family detached residential developments, townhouses developments, and in residential developments that are gated or otherwise secured self-contained developments that have their access to public street(s) at one or more secured points.
   (B)   Design and construction. The pavement, construction, and design standards for all private streets shall be equivalent to the standards for local residential streets unless the developer supplies an alternate pavement design (supported by an engineering study) approved by the town. The developer must furnish an engineer’s seal and certification that the private streets have been tested and certified for the subgrade, base, and asphalt. Common area may need to be widened to include the side ditch section.
   (C)   Through streets. No through street in a residential area connecting two public streets can be designated as a private street.
   (D)   Connections to public streets. All private streets connecting with public streets require approved driveway permits from the town or NCDOT as applicable.
   (E)   Sidewalks. Where sidewalks are installed on private streets, they shall be constructed in accordance with all applicable standards as specified in this ordinance and shall meet or exceed the town’s standard specifications for sidewalks.
   14.3.10   Street intersections. Streets shall be designed to intersect each other at angles as close to 90 degrees as possible. Property lines at street intersections shall be a tangent connecting points on each right-of-way line, which are located a minimum distance of 20 feet back from the intersection of the two right-of-way lines in residentially zoned areas and 50 feet in nonresidentially zoned areas.
   14.3.11   Streets crossing natural areas. All streets crossing natural areas, wetlands, or streams shall cross at or as near to 90 degrees as possible within topographic limits.
   14.3.12   Spacing between intersections. A minimum spacing of 150 feet between intersections shall be maintained. In no case shall a pair of intersecting streets be approved with an offset that does not meet this minimum distance standard.
   14.3.13   Maximum length of cul-de-sacs. The maximum distance from an intersecting through street to the end of a cul-de-sac shall be 1,000 feet, except in the Watershed Critical Area, where a maximum length of 1,600 feet is allowed.
   14.3.14   Temporary turnarounds. Streets stubbed to adjoining property or to phase lines shall be required to have temporary turnarounds at the end of the street which are of a sufficient size to permit sanitation and emergency vehicles to turn around.
   14.3.15   Grades at intersections. The grade on stop streets approaching an intersection shall not exceed 5% for a distance of 100 feet from the centerline of the intersection.
   14.3.16   Street names. Street names, prefixes, suffixes, and addresses shall conform to the guidelines and policies set forth by the county E-911 street naming and addressing standards.
   14.3.17   Street and traffic-control signs.
   (A)   Street signs. At each intersection, the developer shall be required to install street name signage in accordance with town standards for the design of such signage.
   (B)   Traffic-control signs. The developer shall provide traffic-control signs that meet the Manual on Uniform Traffic-Control Devices (MUTCD) standards in locations designated by the town.
   (C)   Maintenance. Maintenance of signs on private streets or drives shall be the responsibility of the owner or owners’ association, as appropriate.
§ 14.4  SIDEWALKS.
   14.4.1   General. Sidewalks shall be installed on public and private streets that are within or abut a subdivision in accordance with the following standards.
   14.4.2   Required locations.
   (A)   Along both sides of new and existing major thoroughfares and minor thoroughfares.
   (B)   Along one side of new and existing collector and sub-collector streets, except that upon review by the approving body, both sides may be required where one or more of the following conditions exists:
      (1)   The current or projected average daily traffic volume is greater than 8,000 vehicles per day;
      (2)   The posted speed limit is greater than 35 mph;
      (3)   The street is identified as a pedestrian route on a pedestrian transportation network plan;
      (4)   Other pedestrian safety, access, or circulation needs are identified; and/or
      (5)   Along one side of new and existing local streets, unless other pedestrian safety, access, or circulation needs are identified.
   14.4.3   Exempt locations.
   (A)   Along new and existing local and sub-collector residential streets where, upon review by the approving body, the following conditions are found to exist:
      (1)   The proposed development is within an area consisting predominantly of existing single-family residential development, where no sidewalks are present;
      (2)   The character and size of the proposed development will not result in substantial additional pedestrian facility needs; and
      (3)   There are no new pedestrian facilities planned or identified in a pedestrian transportation network plan that would provide a pedestrian connection to the proposed development.
   (B)   Along existing streets in predominantly industrial areas where no sidewalks are present and where, upon review by the approving body, a sidewalk is not deemed necessary or feasible.
   (C)   Along new and existing cul-de-sac streets and permanent dead-end streets, which are 800 feet or less in length, and which are not strategic pedestrian routes.
   14.4.4   Extent. Sidewalks required by this ordinance shall be constructed along that portion of the street or streets that the parcel abuts, for the full length of the property line abutting the street or streets. Where sidewalks are required to be installed on one side of a street, the approving body shall determine upon which side the sidewalks are to be installed, in accordance with the town’s standard specifications for sidewalks.
   14.4.5   Construction standards. All sidewalks, whether required by this ordinance or installed voluntarily, shall be constructed to the town’s standard specification for sidewalks and have a minimum width of five feet and a minimum thickness of four inches of concrete.
   14.4.6   Payment in lieu of sidewalk alternative. As an alternative to sidewalks construction, the applicant has the option to make a payment in lieu of constructing the required sidewalks and shall be informed of the amount of payment in lieu before issuance of a zoning permit. Payment in lieu requirements.
   (A)   Approval must be given for payment in lieu of sidewalks by the Ordinance Administrator with guidance from the Planning Board, and/or Technical Review Committee.
   (B)   Payment in lieu of sidewalks is allowed where:
      (1)   Construction of sidewalks would be inconsistent or unreasonable based on surrounding conditions such as topography, wetlands, and the like; and
      (2)   Where a sidewalk would not connect to adjacent sidewalks nor are there proposed or adopted plans for a connecting sidewalk at the site.
   (C)   Payment in lieu is not permitted if:
      (1)   Site is located in the RMF, CB, SI, NI, CX, CW, or CE Zoning Districts;
      (2)   If property is adjacent to any existing sidewalk, greenway bikeway, or pathway; or
      (3)   Site is adjacent to a proposed development plan with sidewalk and/or adjacent to any sidewalk planned for construction.
   (D)   Payment in lieu of sidewalks fund requirements. Funds must be equal to the estimated cost of construction of the required sidewalk, which includes materials, labor, engineering, and any required infrastructure improvements for that sidewalk. In situations where the payment in lieu is being made because topography or wetlands make the construction of the sidewalk impractical or impossible, the Ordinance Administrator may take such impracticality or impossibility into account and may accept a payment lower than the actual costs of building a sidewalk or trail in such location provided such lower payment is not less than cost of construction of such a sidewalk under ordinary conditions. Payment shall be made prior to final plat approval.
   (E)   Fund appropriations. Such funds shall be used at the discretion of the town for use in building or completing pedestrian, bikeway, and/or pathway systems.
§ 14.5  UTILITIES.
   14.5.1   Public water and sewer construction requirements. Water and sewer lines, connections, and equipment shall be constructed in accordance with the South Granville Water and Sewer Authority’s standard specifications for utility line construction.
   14.5.2   Water and sewer connections. Connection of each lot to public water and sewer utilities shall be required if the proposed subdivision is within 300 feet of the nearest adequate line of a public system, provided that no geographic or topographic factors would make such connection infeasible. Where public sewer is not available, lots shall meet applicable Granville-Vance District Health Department regulations. The final plat shall show the certificate of approval from the Environmental Health Division as shown in Appendix B.
   14.5.3   Water and sewer capacity. Subdivisions which are required connect to public utilities must obtain adequate water and sewer capacity allocations from the South Granville Water and Sewer Authority (SGWASA) for the expected amount of usage for the entire subdivision prior to the approval of a preliminary plat. As a condition of approval for a preliminary plat, the subdivider may be required to release allocated water and sewer capacity back to SGWASA if the preliminary plat is allowed to expire.
   14.5.4   Underground utilities. Electrical, telecommunication, cable television, and other utility lines installed within and along streets abutting major subdivisions shall be underground unless the approving body determines underground installation is inappropriate.
   14.5.5   Utility easements.
   (A)   Widths. To provide for electric, telecommunication, cable television, and gas service conduits, and water and sewer lines within a subdivision, adequately sized utility easements not to exceed 30 feet in width shall be provided. The location of such easements shall be reviewed and approved by the approving body, with advice from utility providers, before final plat approval.
   (B)   Restrictions on improvements. Utility easements shall be kept free and clear of any buildings or other improvements that would interfere with the proper maintenance or replacement of utilities. The town shall not be liable for damages to any improvement located within the utility easement area caused by maintenance or replacement of utilities located therein.
   14.5.6   Street lights. Street lights shall be required to be installed along all public streets within the town’s corporate limits.
   14.5.7   Fire protection equipment. Fire protection equipment shall be installed in locations as determined by the town’s Public Safety Division in consultation with South Granville Water and Sewer Authority.