1246.08  ALLOCATION OF AREAS FOR PUBLIC USE.
   (a)   In connection with the submission to the City Planning Commission of subdivision plans, due consideration shall be given by the owner thereof to the allocation of areas reasonably suitable for playgrounds or park or recreational areas to be dedicated or deeded to public use or to be reserved by covenants in deeds to the sub lots (Homeowners Association) thereof for the common use of all property owners within the proposed subdivision.
   In determining such reasonable suitability, consideration shall be given to such factors as the topography of the area to be so allocated, the major physical characteristics of such area, the location thereof in relation to the remaining area of the subdivision, the shape of the area to be so allocated and other similar considerations relative to a determination of whether or not the area to be so allocated can be reasonably used for playgrounds or park or recreation areas.  If the Commission, applying the standards set forth in this section, finds that the area to be so allocated for playgrounds or park and recreation areas is reasonably suitable for such uses, and if it further finds that the area to be so allocated is equal to or greater than the minimum area required by subsection (b) hereof to be dedicated or deeded for public park or recreational uses, the requirements of subsection (b) hereof shall not be applicable to such subdivision and there shall be no requirement that land must be dedicated or deeded for public park or recreational uses as a condition precedent to the approval of a subdivision by the Commission.
   (b)   In the interests of public safety, health and welfare, to provide proper open spaces for circulation of light and air and to avoid future congestion of population detrimental to the public safety, health and welfare, no subdivision plat shall be approved by the City Planning Commission, except as provided in subsections (b) and (c) hereof, until after deducting the area of such subdivision to be dedicated or deeded for public street, sidewalk or utility purposes, five percent of the balance of the area of such subdivision is dedicated or deeded to the City for public park or recreational uses, provided that the area to be so dedicated or deeded to the City for public park or recreational uses must be reasonably suitable, in the judgment of the Commission, for use as a public or recreational area. In determining such reasonable suitability, the Commission shall consider such factors as the topography of the area to be so dedicated or deeded, the major physical characteristics of such area, the location thereof in relation to the remaining area of the subdivision, the shape of the area to be so dedicated or deeded, and other similar considerations as in the judgment of the Commission are relative to a determination of whether or not the area to be so dedicated or deeded can reasonably be used for public park or recreational purposes.
   (c)   Notwithstanding the requirement of subsection (a) hereof, the City Planning Commission shall have authority to after public notice and hearing as provided in Section 1264 of the City Code, approve a subdivision plan wherein less than the minimum area required by subsection (a) hereof is dedicated to the City.  In making such determination, the Commission shall consider such factors as the following:
      (1)   The aggregate area of the subdivision after deducting the area to be dedicated or deeded for public street, sidewalk or utility purposes;
      (2)   The topography of the subdivision;
      (3)   The major physical characteristics of the land within the area of the subdivision;
      (4)   The aggregate area of the subdivision, after deducting the area to be dedicated or deeded for public street, sidewalk or utility purposes, which can reasonably be developed for uses authorized under the Zoning Code;
      (5)   The uses which may be made of the proposed subdivision under the Zoning Code and the density of population which reasonably would result from such permitted uses;
      (6)   The proximity of existing public park or recreational areas and the likelihood that they would reasonably satisfy the need for public park and recreational areas within the proposed subdivision;
      (7)   Proposed deed restrictions and setback lines;
      (8)   Other exceptional conditions as in the judgment of the Commission are relative to a reasonable determination of the area of land to be dedicated to the City for public park and recreational uses; and
      (9)   Whether or not the refusal to approve a subdivision plan with less than the minimum area required to be dedicated or deeded to the City for public park or recreational uses would deprive the developer of the subdivision of substantial property rights.
(Ord. 1981-78.  Passed 7-1-81.)
   (d)   Neither subsection (b) nor subsection (c) hereof shall apply in cases in which the subdivision (excluding phases) is an area less than three and one-half acres of unimproved land.  In certain other cases, as determined by the Planning Commission, subdivisions may be of such a minimum area that it would be unreasonable under any circumstances to require any land therein to be dedicated or deeded to the City for public or recreational areas.  In any case in which it is determined that subsection (b) or subsection (c) hereof does not apply, the developer, in lieu of setting aside lands for park and recreational purposes, shall deposit with the City monies in an amount equal to eight percent of the unimproved cash value of the land being subdivided.  Such money shall be deposited in a special account for land acquisition and/or improvements for park and recreational purposes.  The City Engineer shall be responsible for the collection of such monies.  The owner shall submit to the City Engineer one current appraisal, performed by persons qualified by training and experience, which may be used to establish the unimproved cash value of the land, unless, within three years, the parcel has been transferred by sale or closing agreement, whichever is more recent.  No subdivision plat may be approved or streets dedicated to public use until such monies are paid to the City.
(Ord. 92-234.  Passed 12-15-92; Ord. 04-132. Passed 6-1-04.)
   (e)   In those cases where land is to be deeded or dedicated to the City, the proposed subdivision, the proposed streets of such subdivision shall not be dedicated to public use until the developer of such proposed subdivision delivers a good and sufficient warranty deed conveying title in such deeded land to the City free and clear of all liens, encumbrances, taxes and assessments, both general and special. The deed shall be recorded upon the acceptance of such streets for dedication and the issuance of a title guaranty in the amount of the value of the land, which title guaranty shall show good title in the City free and clear of all liens, encumbrances, taxes and assessments, both general and special, except zoning and building ordinances of record.  All escrow fees, the recording fees and the cost of the title guaranty shall be paid by the developer.
(Ord. 1981-78.  Passed 7-1-81; Ord. 98-114. Passed 9-1-98.)