§ 156.053  NONCONFORMING USES, STRUCTURES, AND PREMISES.
   (A)   Intent.  Within the zones and districts established by this zoning code, or amendments thereto, there exist lots, structures, uses of land and structures, and characteristics of use which were lawful before this zoning code was adopted or amended, but which would be prohibited, regulated, or restricted under the terms of this zoning code or future amendment.  It is the intent of this zoning code to permit these nonconformities to continue until they are removed, but not to encourage their survival.  It is further the intent of this zoning code that nonconformities shall not be enlarged or extended beyond the scope and area of their operation at the time of the adoption or amendment of this zoning code, nor be used as grounds for adding other structures or uses prohibited elsewhere in the same zone or if all or part of.
   (B)   Nonconforming lots of record.
      (1)   In any zone or district in which single-family, two-family, or multi-family dwellings are permitted, a single-family, two-family, or multi-family dwelling as appropriately permitted in the zone and customary accessory buildings may be erected the date of adoption or amendment of this zoning code, or amendment notwithstanding limitations imposed by other provisions of separate ownership and not of continuous frontage with other lots in the same ownership.  This provision shall apply even though such lot fails to meet the requirements for area or frontage, or both, that are generally applicable in the zone or district, providing that dimensional requirements other than those applying to area or frontage or both, of the lots shall conform to the regulations for the zone or district in which such lot is located.  Dimensional variances must be obtained through action of the Board of Zoning Adjustments as provided by this chapter.
      (2)   If two or more lots or combinations of lots and portions of lots with continuous frontage in single ownership are of record at the date of adoption or amendment of this zoning code, and if all or part of the lots do not meet the requirements established for lot width and area, the land involved shall be considered to be an undivided parcel for the purposes of this zoning code.  No subdivision of such parcel shall be made which creates a lot with width or area below the requirements stated in this zoning code.
   (C)   Nonconforming uses of land. Where at the date of adoption or amendment of this zoning code lawful use of land exists which would not be permitted by the regulations imposed by this zoning code, the use may be continued so long as it remains otherwise lawful, provided:
         (l)   No such nonconforming use shall be enlarged or extended to occupy a greater area of land than was occupied at the date of adoption or amendment of this zoning code.
      (2)   No nonconforming use shall be moved in whole or in part to any portion of the lot or parcel other than that occupied by such use at the date of adoption or amendment of this zoning code. The use may be moved to another position on the lot or parcel through appeal to the Board of Zoning Adjustments in § 156.083.
      (3)   When a nonconforming use of land is discontinued or abandoned so as to show a gross lack of diligence in using for one year or more (except when governmental action prevents such use), the land shall not thereafter be used except in conformity with the regulations of the zone or district in which it is located.
   (D)   Nonconforming structures.  Where a lawful structure exists at the effective date of adoption or amendment of this chapter that could not be built under the terms of this zoning code by reason of restrictions on area, lot coverage, height, yards, its location on the lot, or other requirements concerning the structure, such structure may be continued so long as it remains otherwise lawful, subject to the following provisions.
      (1)   No such nonconforming structure may be enlarged or altered in a way which increases its nonconformity, but any structure or portion thereof may be altered to decrease its nonconformity.
      (2)   Should such nonconforming structure or nonconforming portion of a structure be damaged, destroyed, or demolished by any means, it may be reconstructed or repaired but not to exceed the number of cubic feet existing in it, and not to extend or enlarge the scope and area of its operation prior to its damage, destruction, or demolition except as otherwise provided in division (E)(5) below.
      (3)   Should such structure be moved for any reason for any distance whatever, it shall thereafter conform to the regulations for the zone or district in which it is located after it is moved. However, said structure may be moved to another part of the same lot by appeal to the Board of Zoning Adjustments as provided in § 156.083.
   (E)   Nonconforming uses of structures or of structures and premises in combination. If lawful use involving individual structures or of structure and premises in combination exists at the date of adoption or amendment of this zoning code that would not be allowed in the zone or district under the terms of this zoning code, the lawful use may be continued so long as it remains otherwise lawful, subject to the following provisions.
      (1)   No existing structures devoted to a use not permitted by this zoning code in the zone or district in which it is located shall be enlarged, extended, constructed, reconstructed, moved, or structurally altered except in changing the use of the structure to a use permitted in the zone or district in which it is located except as provided in division (5) below.
      (2)   Any nonconforming use may be extended throughout any part of a building which was arranged or designed for such use at the date of adoption or amendment of this zoning code, but no such use shall be extended to occupy any land outside such building.
      (3)   If no structural alterations are made, any nonconforming use of a structure, or structure and premises, may be changed to another nonconforming use by appeal to the Board of Zoning Adjustments if the proposed use is in the same or a more restrictive classification.  In permitting such change, the Board of Zoning Adjustments may require appropriate conditions and safeguards in accord with the provisions of this zoning code.
      (4)   Any structure, or structure and land in combination, in or on which a  nonconforming use is superseded by a permitted use, shall thereafter conform to the regulations for the zone or district, and  the nonconforming use may not thereafter be resumed.
      (5)   When a nonconforming use of a structure, or structure and premises in combination, is halted because of the damage, destruction, or demolition of the structure by any means, the structure may be reconstructed or repaired but not to exceed the number of cubic feet existing in it prior to its damage, destruction, or demolition, and the nonconforming use resumed but not to extend or enlarge the scope and area of its operation prior to its damage, destruction, or demolition.
      (6)   When a nonconforming use of a structure, or structure and premises in combination, intentionally discontinued or abandoned so as to show a gross lack of diligence in using for one year or more (except when government action prevents such use), the structure, or structure and premises in combination, shall not thereafter be used except in conformity with the regulations of the zone or district in which it is located.
   (F)   Repairs and maintenance.  On any nonconforming structure or portion of structure, and on any structure containing a nonconforming use, work may be done on ordinary repairs, or on repair or replacement of walls, fixtures, wiring, or plumbing or other parts, provided that the cubic content of the nonconforming structure or portion shall not be increased.  Nothing in this zoning code shall be deemed to prevent the strengthening, repairing, or restoring to a safe condition of any structure or part thereof.
   (G)   Conditional uses not nonconforming uses.  Any existing principal permitted use at the date of the adoption or amendment of this zoning code which would thereafter require a conditional use permit shall without further action be deemed a conforming use, but any enlargement or replacement of such use, in buildings or on land, shall require a conditional use permit.
(Ord. 794, passed 12-22-83; Am. Ord. 90-925, passed 7-26-90)  Penalty, see § 156.999