§ 329.03 Variance Powers
   (a)   Conditions Requiring Variances. Where there is practical difficulty or unnecessary hardship in the way of carrying out the strict letter of the provisions of this Zoning Code, the Board of Zoning Appeals shall have the power, in a specific case, to vary or modify the application of any such provisions in harmony with the general purpose and intent of this Zoning Code so that public health, safety, morals and general welfare may be safeguarded and substantial justice done.
   (b)   Limitation of Variance Powers. Such variance shall be limited to specific cases where:
      (1)   The practical difficulty or unnecessary hardship inheres in and is peculiar to the premises sought to be built upon or used because of physical size, shape or other characteristics of the premises or adjoining premises which differentiate it from other premises in the same district and create a difficulty or hardship caused by a strict application of the provisions of this Zoning Code not generally shared by other land or buildings in the same district;
      (2)   Refusal of the variance appealed for will deprive the owner of substantial property rights; and
      (3)   Granting of the variance appealed for will not be contrary to the purpose and intent of the provisions of this Zoning Code.
   (c)   Data on Which Variance is Based. When appealing for a variance, the appellant shall state and substantiate his or her claim that the three (3) conditions listed under division (b) of this section exist, and the Board shall make a finding on each of the three (3) conditions as they apply in each specific case as a prerequisite for the granting of the variance.
   (d)   Variance from Use Regulations.
      (1)   The Board may permit, in any use district, the extension of a building or use existing on the effective date of the use regulations of the area, into adjoining land in a more restricted district, which land was under the same ownership on the effective date, under such conditions as will safeguard the character of the more restricted district.
      (2)   The Board may permit the extension or enlargement of a building or use, or the erection of an additional building, upon premises lawfully occupied by such building or use on November 5, 1929, or lawfully occupied on the date of any amendment or supplement to the Zoning Code approved by the electorate on that date, or to this Zoning Code, creating a more restricted use district, and in which more restricted use district the building or use thereby became a nonconforming building or use, provided that such extension, enlargement or additional building shall not tend to perpetuate a nonconformity which otherwise might be discontinued at an earlier date.
      (3)   The Board may permit, in any use district, such modification of the use regulations as may be necessary to secure an appropriate development of a lot adjoining buildings or uses existing on the effective date of the use regulations and not conforming to such regulations, or adjoining a less restricted use district along a side lot line, provided that the use permitted by such modification shall not extend across any street or alley from such nonconforming uses or such less restricted use district, nor allow uses other than those listed in this Zoning Code as permitted in the use district next lower in order of restrictiveness to the district in which such lot is located.
   (e)   Variance from Area, Yard and Court Regulations.
      (1)   Notwithstanding the provisions of divisions (a), (b), and (c) of this section, the Board may permit such modification of the area regulations or of regulations affecting yard or court dimensions as may be necessary to secure an appropriate improvement of an existing lot of record that is of such restricted area that it cannot be improved without such modification and, further, that such existing lot of record is located in an area characterized by yards, courts or lot areas of similar size or dimensions.
      (2)   The Board may permit such modification of the regulations affecting yard and court dimensions as may be necessary to permit the use of an existing building for a purpose for which such regulations require greater yards or courts than those existing on the premises, provided the Board determines that such existing yards or courts will provide adequate light and ventilation for the spaces lighted or ventilated thereby and will not tend to create an unhealthful or unsanitary condition under the proposed conditions of arrangement, use and occupancy.
   (f)   Variance from Height Regulations.
      (1)   The Board may permit the erection of an addition to an existing building to the same height above the grade level as such existing building where such addition is essential to the completion of such building as originally planned.
      (2)   The Board may permit the extension upward of a building existing on November 5, 1929, by the construction of additional stories above the height limit prescribed in this Zoning Code if the original plans approved by the Commissioner of Building and Housing provided for such additional stories and such building was actually designed and constructed to carry such additional stories.
   (g)   Variance from Distance Regulations. The Board may vary the required distance from property in a residence district specified in Sections 335.02 and 337.01 to 337.23, where such variance will not adversely affect the neighborhood, or the safety, health and general welfare of the occupants of the building, provided proper notice of the proposed variance has been given to the owners of the property on the same street and those in the same block within a distance of two hundred (200) feet from the premises of the proposed use, and a public hearing has been held.
(Ord. No. 2048-95. Passed 12-18-95, eff. 12-26-95)