3.4   Definitions.
   Abandon. To cease the regular use or maintenance of a lot, building, or structure.
   Abutting. Having common property boundaries or lot lines that are not separated by a street, alley, or other vehicular rights-of-way such as a utility easement.
   Accessory structure. A structure or building incidental to the principal structure on the same lot. Accessory structures include, but are not limited to, detached garages, sheds, pool houses, material storage areas, barns and workshops.
   Adjacent. See "Abutting."
   Adult bookstore. Notwithstanding the definitions of "adult bookstore" contained in G.S. 14-202.10(1), "adult bookstore" means a business establishment that:
   *   Has one of its principal business purposes the sale or rental of; or
   *   Has a substantial or significant portion or its stock or trade for sale or rental; or
   *   Has "publications" that are distinguished or characterized by their emphasis on matter depicting, describing or relating to "specified anatomical areas" as defined in G.S. 14-202.10(10), or "specified sexual activities", as defined in G.S. 14-202.10(9).
   *   Has "sexually oriented devices", as defined in G.S. 14-202.10(9).
   As used in this definition, "publications" include, by way of illustration, books, magazines, other periodicals, movies, videotapes, and other products offered in photographic, electronic, magnetic, or other imaging medium.
   In addition to all other information available to the town planner in making a determination whether a particular use is an "adult bookstore," any of the following shall be indicia that an establishment has as one of its principal business purposes the sale or rental of (i) "publications" that are distinguished or characterized by their emphasis on matter depicting, describing or relating to "specific anatomical areas", as defined in G.S. 14-202.10(10), or "specified sexual activities", as defined in G.S. 14-202.10(11); and/or (ii) "sexually oriented devices" as defined in G.S. 14-202.10(9):
   *   Restricted access to the business establishment or portions of the business establishment by persons under eighteen (18) years of age; and/or
   *   Posted signs or notices outside and/or inside the business establishment indicating that the material offered for sale or rental might be offensive; and/or
   *   The building or portion of the building containing the business establishment does not have windows or has windows that are screened or otherwise obstructed or are situated in a manner that restricts visual access from outside the building to materials displayed within for sale or rental.
   Adult establishment. Adult cabarets, adult bookstores, adult mini motion picture theaters, and all other places contained in G.S. 14-202.10.
   Adult mini motion picture theater. Notwithstanding the definition of adult mini motion picture theater contained in G.S. 14-202.10(6), adult mini motion picture theater means an enclosed building with one (1) or more viewing booths or partitioned areas designed to hold patrons for the presentation and viewing of motion pictures (film, videotape, laser disc, CD-ROM or other imaging media), where:
   *   One of the principal business purposes is the presentation and viewing of motion pictures in the viewing booths that; or
   *   A substantial or significant portion of the stock of motion pictures available for viewing or that are actually viewed in the viewing booths:
   Are distinguished or characterized by their emphasis on matter depicting, describing, or relating to "specified anatomical areas," as defined in G.S. 14-202.10(10) or "specified sexual activities" as defined in G.S. 14-202.10(11) and/or "sexually oriented devices," as defined in G.S. 14-202.10(9).
   In addition to all other information available to the town planner in making a determination whether a particular use is an adult mini motion picture theater, any of the following shall be indicia that an establishment has as one of its principal business purposes the presentation and viewing in viewing booths motion pictures that are distinguished or characterized by their emphasis on matter depicting, describing, or relating to specified anatomical areas, as defined in G.S. 14.202.10(10), or specified sexual activities as defined in G.S. 14-202.10(11) and/or sexual oriented devices, as defined in G.S. 14.202.10(9):
   *   Restricted access to the business establishment or portions of the business establishment where viewing booths are located by persons under sixteen (16) years of ages; and/or
   *   Posted signs or notices outside and/or inside the business establishment indicating that the material offered for presentation and viewing in viewing booths might be offensive; and/or
   *   The portion of the building containing the viewing booths is screened or otherwise located or situated in a manner that restricts or limits complete visual access to the booths from the primary or principal clerk or cashier area.
   Amusement, commercial outdoor. Any business establishment which is primarily engaged in providing an amusement activity such as a miniature golf course, skateboard course, water slide, mechanical ride, par 3 golf course, golf driving range, go cart or motorcycle course, fish ranch, or similar activity to the general public.
   Amusement, commercial indoor. Any business establishment which is primarily engaged in providing an amusement activity such as a video arcade, billiard parlor, skating rink or similar activity as a principal use to the general public, but does not include indoor motion picture theaters.
   Anchor tenant. Major department or chain stores which are strategically located at shopping centers so as to give maximum exposure to smaller satellite stores.
   Animation. The usage of multiple frames running at a fast enough speed that the human eye perceives the content to be in continuous movement.
   Approved architectural material. The structural or applied surface component of a facade including brick, rock, tinted or textured concrete masonry units, wood plank, fiber cement siding, pre-cast concrete, tilt-up concrete, shakes, split faced block, marble or simulated substitute. All materials shall be of a high quality. Vinyl and metal siding may be used as a minor material of the building facade.
   Architectural element. A facade module feature that is applied, inserted, incorporated or constructed into or upon the primary or secondary facade including real or faux windows; real or faux doors; awnings, gables, parapets, porticos, porte-cocheres, arcades, arches, cupolas, columns, roof lines, material projections, recesses, cornices, etc.
   Areas of environmental concern (AEC). AEC's are areas of natural importance. It may be easily destroyed by erosion or flooding, or it may have environmental, social, economic or aesthetic values that make it valuable to the state. AEC's are the foundation of the Coastal Resource Commission's permitting program for coastal development.
   Automotive repair. A building and its premises used for the storage, care, repair, or refinishing of motor vehicles including both minor and major mechanical overhauling, paint and body work. Minor repairs shall be limited to battery and tire changes, light and fuse replacement, wiper blade changes and similar activities. Also referred to as vehicle repair.
   Awning. A structure made of cloth, metal, or other material affixed to a building in such a manner that the structure may be raised or retracted from a building to a flat position against the building, but not a canopy.
   Bed and breakfast inn. A use that takes place within a building that, prior to such an establishment, was a single family residence, that consists of renting from one to eight dwelling rooms on a daily basis to tourists, vacationers, and business travelers, where meals are provided only to guests. The homeowner shall reside on site and employment shall not exceed two full time employees in addition to the owner(s).
   Big box development. A single structure containing at least fifty thousand (50,000) square feet of gross floor area that is constructed for the purpose of retail or wholesale occupancy.
   Buffer (see screening also). A strip of land with natural or planted vegetation, located between a structure or use and a side or rear property line, intended to spatially separate and visually obstruct the view of two adjacent land uses or properties from one another. A buffer area may include any required screening for the site.
   Buildable area. The portion of a lot remaining after required yards have been provided.
   Building. A temporary or permanent structure having a roof supported by columns or walls and which can be used for the shelter, housing, or enclosure of persons, animals, or goods.
   Building height. Maximum of twelve (12) feet from the finish grade to the bottom of the bandlevel, not to exceed forty-eight (48) feet.
   Building inspector. The person, officer, and his authorized representatives, whom the town council have designated as their agent for the administration and enforcement of the building code.
   Building site (see development also). An area of land or property where development is undertaken.
   Built upon area. Built upon areas shall include that portion of a development project and/or lots that are covered by impervious or partially impervious cover including buildings, pavement, gravel roads, recreation facilities (tennis courts) etc. Wooden slatted decks and the water area of a swimming pool are considered pervious.
   Caliper. A standard trunk diameter measurement for trees. This measurement is taken six (6) inches above the ground for up to and including four (4) inch caliper size, and twelve (12) inches above the ground for larger sizes.
   Campground. Any site or tract of land upon which are located the minimum number of travel trailer spaces of land area required by this ordinance, regardless of whether or not a change is made for such services.
   Canopy. A permanent structure, not enclosed and not retractable, attached or unattached to a building, for the purpose of providing shelter to patrons or automobiles, or as a decorative feature on a building wall.
   Canopy tree. Any large maturing tree which at maturity provides a crown width sufficient to shade a minimum of one thousand two hundred (1,200) square feet. Some trees due to location on Topsail Island may be unable to reach this size due to climate conditions.
   Change of use. The change in the use of a structure or land, for which a certificate of occupancy is required. Change of use shall include a change from one use to another use in the list(s) of permitted uses, and shall also include a change from one use to another use within any broad category of uses, such as from one use listed in the commercial use category to another uses listed in the commercial use category, as herein defined.
   Church. (see religious institution).
   Club, or private lodge. An incorporated or unincorporated association for civic, social, cultural, religious, fraternal, literary, political, recreational, or like activities, operated on a nonprofit basis for the benefit of its members and certified as a nonprofit organization by the Secretary of State of North Carolina.
   Clinic, veterinary. A use or structure intended or used primarily for the testing and treatment of the physical disorders of animals; not principally used for the overnight boarding or grooming of animals; not permitting outdoor cages, pens, or runs for the confinement of animals unless expressly permitted in the district; and not used for the training of animals.
   Coastal shorelines. Include all lands within seventy-five (75) feet of the normal high water level of estuarine waters. This definition also includes lands within thirty (30) feet of the normal high water level of public trust waters located inland of the dividing line between coastal fishing waters and inland fishing waters. Along outstanding resource waters, this definition includes lands within five hundred seventy-five (575) feet of the normal high water level.
   Coastal wetlands. Any marsh in the CAMA regulated coastal counties that regularly or occasionally floods by lunar or wind tides, and that includes one or more of ten (10) plant species:
   *   Spartina alterniflora: Salt Marsh (Smooth) Cord Grass
   *   Juncus roemerianus: Black Needlerush
   *   Salicornia spp.: Glasswort
   *   Distichlis spicata: Salt (or Spike) Grass
   *   Limonium spp.: Sea Lavender
   *   Scirpus spp.: Bulrush
   *   Cladium jaamaicense: Saw Grass
   *   Typha spp.: Cattail
   *   Spartina patens: Salt Meadow Grass
   *   Spartina cynosuroides: Salt Reed or Giant Cord Grass
   Commercial communication tower. A tower facility, either roof or ground mounted, that includes, but is not limited to, radio and television transmission towers or similar utilities, microwave towers, and cellular telephone communication towers and similar structures for wireless communication. This term shall not include radio transmission facilities for use by ham radio operators or two way local radio facilities for business or governmental purposes.
   Condominium. A unit in which the occupancy rights are individually owned (or for sale to individuals) and in which the unit ownership does not include any land.
   Copy. Any words, letters, numbers, figures, characters, symbols, logos, or insignia that are used on a sign display surface area.
   Critical root zone. A circular region measured outward from a tree trunk representing the essential area of the roots that must be maintained in order for the tree's survival. The critical root zone is one foot of radial distance for every inch of tree DBH, with a minimum of eight (8) feet.
   Day care center. A location providing day care, as a principal use or an accessory use, provided on a less than twenty-four (24) hour basis for any one client, either children or adults, according to the following limiting definitions:
   *   Child day care center. An individual, agency, or organization providing supervision or care on a regular basis for children who are not related by blood or marriage to, and who are not the legal wards or foster children or, the supervising adults; usually serving more than ten (10) children at a time; not an accessory to residential use.
   *   Adult day care center. An individual, agency, or organization providing supervision or care on a regular basis; usually for more than six (6) adults in a place other than their usual place of abode; not an accessory to residential use.
   *   Day care home (accessory use). Day care provided on a less than twenty-four (24) hour basis for either children or adults, according to the following limiting definitions:
   *   Child day care home. Supervision or care provided on a regular basis as an accessory use within a principal residential dwelling unit, by a resident of the dwelling for five (5) to ten (10) children who are not related by blood or marriage to, and who are not the legal wards or foster children of the supervising adult.
   *   Adult day care home. Care provided on a regular basis as an accessory use within a principal residential dwelling unit, by a resident of the dwelling, for up to six (6) adults who do not reside in the dwelling.
   Developer. Any person, including a government agency, seeking approval under these regulations for any form of development.
   Development. The carrying out of any building activity, the making of any material change in the use or appearance of any structure or land, or the subdividing of land into two or more parcels.
   *   The following activities or uses, shall be considered development:
   *   The reconstruction, alteration of the size, or material change in the external appearance of a structure on land or water;
   *   A change in the intensity of use of land, such as an increase in the number of dwelling units in a structure or on land or a material increase in the number of businesses, manufacturing establish-ments, offices, or dwelling units in a structure or on land;
   *   Alteration of the shore or bank of a pond, lake, waterway, or ocean;
   *   Commencement of drilling (except to obtain soil samples), mining, or excavation on a parcel of land;
   *   Clearing of land, including clearing or removal of vegetation and including any significant disturbance of vegetation or soil manipulation; or
   *   Deposit of refuse, solid, or liquid waste, or fill on a parcel of land.
   *   Development includes all other activity customarily associated with it. When appropriate to the context development refers to the act of developing or to the result of development. Reference to any specific operation is not intended to mean that the operation or activity when part of other operations or activities is not development. Reference to particular operations is not intended to limit the generality of this definition.
   *   For the purposes of these regulations the following operations or uses shall not be considered development; some may, however, require a building permit:
   *   Work involving the maintenance, renewal, improvement, or alteration of any structure, if the work affects only the color or decoration of the exterior of the structure or interior alterations that do not change the use for which the structure was constructed;
   *   Work involving the maintenance or replacement of existing landscaped areas and existing rights-of-way;
   *   A change in use of land or structure from a use within a specified category of use to another use in the same category;
   *   A change in the ownership or form of ownership of any parcel or structure;
   *   The creation or termination of rights of access, riparian rights, easements, covenants concerning development of land, or other rights in land unless otherwise specifically required by law, or;
   *   The clearing of survey cuts or other paths of less than four (4) feet in width.
   Development approval. An administrative or quasi-judicial approval made pursuant to this Chapter that is written and that is required prior to commencing development or undertaking a specific activity, project, or development proposal. Development approvals include, but are not limited to, zoning permits, site plan approvals, special use permits, variances, and certificates of appropriateness. The term also includes all other regulatory approvals required by regulations adopted pursuant to this Chapter, including plat approvals, permits issued, development agreements entered into, and building permits issued.
   Diameter at breast height (DBH). The tree trunk diameter measured in inches at a height of four and one-half (4½) feet above the ground. Generally used for measuring existing trees.
   District, zoning. Any section of the Town of Surf City in which zoning regulations are uniform.
   Drip line. An imaginary vertical line extending from the outermost edge of the tree canopy or shrub branch to the ground.
   Driveway. The vehicular access way between the edge of pavement and the property line.
   Dwelling, manufactured home. See manufactured home.
   Dwelling, multiple-family. A residential building designed for or occupied by two (2) or more families, with the number of families in residence not exceeding the number of dwelling units provided.
   Dwelling, single-family. A detached residential dwelling unit other than a manufactured home, designed for and occupied by one (1) family only.
   Dwelling, two-family (duplex). An attached residential building containing two (2) dwelling units, designed for occupancy by not more than two (2) families.
   Dwelling unit. One (1) or more rooms together, constituting a separate, independent housekeeping establishment for owner occupancy, or rental or lease on a weekly, monthly, or longer basis, and physically separated from any other rooms or dwelling units which may be in the same structure, and containing independent cooking and sleeping facilities.
   Electronic changeable copy sign. A permanent freestanding sign whose informational content can be changed by electronic means.
   Electronic gaming operation. A business enterprise where persons utilize electronic machines, including but not limited to personal computers and dedicated gaming terminals, to conduct games of chance, including sweepstakes, and where cash, merchandise, or other prizes are redeemed or otherwise distributed. May also be referred to as cyber or internet sweepstakes.
   Estuarine and ocean system AEC. The estuarine and ocean system is the coast's broad network of brackish sounds, marshes and surrounding shores. Normally found where rivers and streams meet the ocean, an estuary is a unique and important part of coastal life - a transitional area where fresh and salt water mix.
   Estuarine waters. State's oceans, sounds, tidal rivers and their tributaries, which stretch across coastal North Carolina and link to the other parts of the estuarine system: public trust areas, coastal wetlands and coastal shorelines.
   Evidentiary hearing. A hearing to gather competent, material, and substantial evidence in order to make findings for a quasi-judicial decision required by a development regulation adopted under this Chapter.
   Existing lot of record. A lot which is part of a subdivision, a plat of which has been recorded in the office of the register of deeds prior to the adoption of this ordinance, or a lot described by metes and bounds, the description of which has been so recorded prior to the adoption of this ordinance.
   Expenditure. A sum of money paid out in return for some benefit or to fulfill some obligation. Whenever the term is used hereafter, it also includes binding contractual commitments to make future expenditures, as well as any other substantial changes in position.
   Facade. The visible exterior portion of a building wall which extends from the ground to the top of the wall or roof line.
   Facade module. A 60-foot or shorter horizontal section of facade containing a minimum of five (5) unique architectural elements.
   Facade, other. Any facade which is not considered a primary or secondary facade.
   Facade, primary. The facade containing the highest number of customer entrances.
   Facade, secondary. A facade which is designed to be viewed from a public street but is not the primary facade.
   Family. One (1) or more persons occupying a single dwelling unit, provided that unless all members are related by blood or marriage, no such family shall contain over five (5) persons, but further provided that domestic servants employed on the premises may be housed on the premises without being counted as a family or families.
   Farm, bonafide. A property that is located in the town’s extraterritorial jurisdiction that is used for bona fide farm purposes in accordance with G.S. 160D-903(a) and is exempt from zoning regulation to the same extent bona fide farming activities are exempt from county zoning pursuant to G.S. 160D-903.
   Flashing. An intermittent or flashing light source where the identical EMC message is constantly repeated at extremely fast intervals.
   Flood (coastal). A temporary rise in ocean level, that results in inundation of areas not ordinarily covered by water.
   Flood, regulation. The flood which is representative of large floods known to have occurred generally in the area and reasonably characteristic of what can be expected to occur. The regulatory flood generally has a flood frequency of approximately one hundred (100) years as determined by the Federal Flood Insurance Administration, FEMA.
   Foot candle. A unit of illuminance or illumination, equivalent to the illumination produced by a source of one (1) candle at a distance of one (1) foot and equal to one (1) lumen incident per square foot. Abbreviation: FC
   Fraternity or sorority houses. A building occupied by and maintained exclusively for college or university students who are affiliated with a social honorary, or professional organization which is chartered by a national fraternal or sororal order and which is so recognized by the college, university or other institution of higher education.
   Full cut-off light. A light fixture that cuts off all upward transmission of light.
   Gasoline service station. Any premises where gasoline and other petroleum products are sold and light maintenance activities such as engine tune ups, lubrication, minor repairs, and carburetor, or cleaning may be conducted, having no more than four (4) pumping stations and accommodating eight (8) cars. Service stations shall not include premises where heavy automobiles maintenance activities such as engine overhauls, automobile painting, and body work are conducted.
   Glare. Discomfort experienced by an observer with a direct line of sight to a light source that often results in visual impairment.
   Governing board. The Town of Surf City Town Council. The term is interchangeable with the term "town council."
   Group home. A residential home provided by an agency, organization, or individual for persons who need sheltered living conditions, but not including persons who are dangerous to others as defined in G.S. 122C-3(11)b, as amended. Group homes for up to six (6) persons are permitted in any district which allows residential uses.
   High hazard flood AEC. Covers lands subject to flooding, high waves and heavy water currents during a major storm. These are the lands identified as coastal flood with velocity hazard, or "V zones," on flood insurance rate maps prepared by the Federal Insurance Administration.
   Home occupation. An occupation for gain or support conducted entirely within a dwelling and carried on by the occupants. The use must be clearly incidental and secondary to the use of the dwelling for living purposes. The use must not change the character thereof.
   Hotel. A building containing more than four (4) individual rooms for the purpose of providing overnight lodging facilities to the general public for compensation, with or without meals, and which has common facilities for reservations and cleaning services, combined utilities, and on site management and reception services.
   Ice vending machine. A freestanding building or modular unit that produces, stores, bags and or vends ice to the consumer in an automated fashion. These uses are considered a separate use and may not be utilized as accessory structures.
   Impervious. The characteristic of material, which prevents the infiltration or passage of liquid through it. This may apply to roads, streets, parking lots, rooftops and driveways.
   Independent living facility. Congregate living facilities, such as rest homes and homes for the aged, which are designed for older persons or disabled persons who do not require health and support services, such as medical and nursing care, central dining, and transportation service, located on the site. Each living unit may be self contained and is physically accessible to older or disabled persons. Distinguished from apartment building(s) by the provision of some communal services.
   Inlet hazard AEC. Covers the lands next to ocean inlets. Inlet shorelines are especially vulnerable to erosion and flooding and can shift suddenly and dramatically. The distance the inlet hazard AEC extends inland is estimated to be large enough to encompass those lands where the inlet can be expected to migrate. At a minimum, this distance is the same distance inland as the ocean erodible AEC. Inlet hazard AEC's range in width from about two hundred fifty (250) feet for a fairly stable inlet to about four thousand (4,000) feet for the most dynamic inlets.
   Interconnected. Refers to streets which provide through access to other streets; interconnected street systems may be either rectilinear or curvilinear. Also applies to commercial driveways which allows passage from one property to another without accessing the street.
   Junk yard. Any land or area used, in whole or in part for commercial storage and/or sale of waste paper, rags, scrap metal, or other junk, and including storage of scrapped motor vehicles and dismantling of such vehicles or machinery.
   Kennel, commercial. A use or structure intended and used for the breeding or accommodation of small domestic animals for sale or for the training or overnight boarding of animals for persons other than the owner of the lot, but not including a veterinary clinic in which the overnight boarding of animals is necessary for or accessory to the testing and medical treatment of the physical disorders of animals.
   Kennel, private. A structure used for the outdoor accommodation of small domestic animals and not operated on a commercial basis.
   Land disturbing activity. Any use of the land by any person that results in a change in the natural cover or topography and that may cause or contribute to sedimentation or soil compaction that affects the critical root zone.
   Landscaping. The installation and maintenance, usually of a combination of trees, shrubs, plant materials, or other ground cover, including grass, mulch, decorative stone and similar materials, but excluding bare soil, uncultivated vegetation, impervious pavement materials, and gravel. Any live plant material such as trees, shrubs, ground cover, and grass areas left in their natural state.
   Light manufacturing. The assembly, fabrication, or processing of goods and materials using processes that ordinarily do not create noise, smoke, fumes, odors, glare, or health or safety hazards outside of the building or lot where such assembly, fabrication, or processing takes place; where such processes are housed entirely within a building; or where the area occupied by outdoor storage of goods and materials used in such processes do not exceed twenty-five (25) percent of the floor area of all buildings on the property.
   Live/work. An attached building type with small commercial enterprises on the ground floor and a residential unit above.
   Lot depth. The mean horizontal distance between front and rear lot lines.
   Lot frontage. The front of a lot shall be construed to be the portion nearest the street.
   Lot of record. A lot described by plat or metes and bounds which has been recorded in the office of the register of deeds.
   Lot types:
   *   Corner lot. A lot located at the intersection of two (2) or more streets, or abutting a curved street or streets in such a way that the front building line meets either side lot line at an interior angle of less than one hundred thirty-five (135) degrees.
   *   Interior lot. A lot other than a corner lot with frontage on only one (1) street.
   *   Through lot. A lot other than a corner lot with frontage on more than one (1) street.
   *   Lot. A parcel of land whose boundaries have been established by some legal instrument such as a deed or a recorded map and which is recognized as a separate legal entity for purposes of transfer of title. If a public road crosses a parcel of land otherwise characterized as a lot by this definition, the land on each side of the public road shall constitute a separate lot.
   *   Reverse frontage lot. Any lot oriented to an abutting street in such a way that the intersection of the front building line, extended, and the street right of way line form an interior angle of less than forty-five (45) degrees is defined as having reverse frontage relative to said street.
   Manufactured home class A. A double-wide or multi-sectioned manufactured housing unit that meets the U.S. Housing and Urban Development Department manufactured home construction standards and adhere to the following appearance criteria:
   a)   The main portion of the building shall have a length not exceeding four times its width. The minimum width shall be sixteen (16) feet.
   b)   The pitch of the main roof of the building shall have a minimum rise of three (3) feet for each twelve (12) feet of horizontal run. The roof shall be finished with a type of shingle that is commonly used in residential construction. The eave projection shall be no less than six (6) inches, which may include a gutter.
   c)   The exterior siding shall consist predominantly of vinyl or aluminum lap siding (whose reflectivity does not exceed that of flat white paint), wood or hardboard, comparable in composition, appearance and durability to the exterior siding commonly used in residential construction.
   d)   All class A manufactured homes shall be placed on brick, concrete block, or other masonry foundation. The foundation shall be continuous and unpierced except for ventilation as required by the state of North Carolina regulations for manufactured/mobile homes.
   e)   Class A manufactured homes shall have either a deck or a porch with steps. This structure shall be located in the front of the home. The minimum square footage shall measure at least thirty-six (36) square feet. If the homeowner chooses to construct the deck or porch larger than thirty-six (36) square feet, it must meet Volume VII of the North Carolina residential building code and the North Carolina regulations for manufactured/mobile homes.
   f)   The towing apparatus and tongue shall be removed upon final placement of the unit and the unit must be underskirted or screened with shrubbery. Such shrubbery shall be of a height and density to assure a total visual barrier of the original location of the towing apparatus and maintained to continue its effectiveness. All items removed from the unit such as the towing apparatus and tongue shall be removed from the lot or contained within an enclosed building.
   Manufactured home class B. A single-wide manufactured housing unit that meets the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development manufactured home construction standards and also meets the following appearance criteria:
   a)   Roof pitch is at least a three (3) foot rise for every twelve (12) feet of horizontal run. The roof shall be finished with a type of shingle that is commonly used in residential construction.
   b)   The exterior siding shall consist predominantly of vinyl or aluminum lap siding (whose reflectivity does not exceed that of flat white paint), wood or hardboard, comparable in composition, appearance and durability to the exterior siding commonly used in standard residential construction.
   c)   Class B manufactured homes must be underpinned. This underpinning may consist of vinyl or masonite materials manufactured for that purpose or the home may be placed on a permanent foundation of masonry materials such as brick, block or stone.
   d)   A deck or porch of at least thirty-six (36) square feet in size must be located on the front of the home.
   e)   Towing apparatus and tongue to be removed or screened with landscaping.
   Manufactured home class C. Double-wide manufactured housing unit existing in the Town of Surf City prior to June 1, 2004, that meets the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development manufactured home construction standards, but does not meet the town's appearance criteria. Such manufactured homes may only be relocated to manufactured home parks or on lots of record in the RA and R-5M districts in existence prior to June 1, 2004. At that time, the home must be underpinned with either masonry materials or other products manufactured expressly for the purpose of underpinning and installed in accordance with the manufacturer's specifications.
   Manufactured home class D. Single-wide manufactured housing unit existing in the Town of Surf City prior to June 1, 2004, that meets the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development manufactured home construction standards, but does not meet the town's appearance criteria. Such manufactured homes may only be relocated to manufactured home parks or lots of record in the RA and R-5M district in existence prior to June 1, 2004. At that time, the home must be underpinned with either masonry materials or other products manufactured expressly for the purpose of underpinning and installed in accordance with the manufacturer's specification.
   Manufactured home class E. Any manufactured housing unit that does not meet the Town of Surf City appearance criteria or the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development manufactured home construction standards. Class E manufactured will not be permitted in the town after June 1, 2004. Homes existing in the town's jurisdiction prior to June 1, 2004 will be allowed to remain at their current location as nonconformity's, but may not be relocated anywhere in the town's jurisdiction.
   Manufactured home park. Any site or parcel of land under single ownership where land is rented and utilities are provided for the installation or placement of manufactured homes.
   Marina, commercial. A facility for the wet or dry storage, launching and mooring of boats, together with all accessory structures and uses.
   Massage therapy. Health massage or bodywork therapy, performed by a practitioner with credentials in one of the following ways:
   *   Having a diploma or certificate from an institute or school of health massage, which has been accredited by either the American Massage Therapists Association, the National Therapists Association, or from an accredited college or university, school of education for massage therapy; or
   *   Providing verification and documentation of at least five hundred (500) hours of experience in the practice of health massage/bodywork therapy and three letters of reference from state licensed health care professionals or licensed therapists on their professional letterhead.
   Mean sea level. The National Geodetic Vertical Datum (NGVD) of 1929, or other datum, to which base flood elevations shown on the Flood Insurance Maps for Pender and Onslow County are referenced.
   Minor material. An architectural material that is described as being lesser, as in size, extent, or importance. A minor material may not exceed fifteen (15) percent of a facade module.
   Modular home. A dwelling unit which is constructed in compliance with the state building code and composed of components substantially assembled in an off site manufacturing plant and transported to the building site for final assembly on a permanent foundation.
   Monument sign. An on-premise freestanding sign with the appearance of a solid base sign. The width of the base shall be at least seventy-five (75) percent of the width of the sign. The height of the sign shall not exceed ten (10) feet.
   Mooring or float. An object or structure secured in the water, such as by cables, lines, chains, or anchors, and intended or used for securing one or more boats in the water.
   Motel. See hotel.
   Motelminium. A condominium project, with individual unit ownership, developed for short-term or transient occupancy that has rental or registration desks, on-site management services, daily cleaning services, telephone services and other convenience services to residents and guests typical of a commercially operated facility. A motelminium is operated as a commercial hotel even though the units are individually owned.
   Nightclub. Any commercial establishment serving alcoholic beverages and/or providing entertainment for patrons, including but not limited to bars, lounges, taverns, cabarets, and similar establishments.
   Nonconformity.
   *   Nonconforming situation. A situation that occurs when, on the effective date of this ordinance or any amendment to it, an existing lot or structure or use of existing lot or structure does not conform to one (1) or more of the regulations applicable to the district in which the lot or structure is located. Among other possibilities, a nonconforming situation may arise because a lot does not meet minimum acreage requirements, because structures do not satisfy maximum height or minimum floor space limitations because the relationship between existing buildings and the land (in such matters as density and setback requirements) is not in conformity with the ordinance, or because land or buildings are used for purposes made unlawful by the ordinance.
   *   Nonconforming use. A nonconforming situation that occurs when property is used for a purpose or in a manner made unlawful by the use regulations applicable to the district in which the property is located. (For example, a commercial office building in a residential district may be a nonconforming use.) The term also refers to the activity that constitutes the use made of the property. (For example, all the activity associated with running a bakery in a residentially zoned area is a nonconforming use.)
   *   Dimensional nonconformity. A nonconforming situation that occurs when the height, size, or minimum floor space of a structure or the relationship between an existing building or buildings and other buildings or lot lines does not conform to the regulations applicable to the district in which the property is located.
   *   Nonconforming lot. A lot existing and properly recorded as a matter of public record in the Pender or Onslow County register of deeds office, as of the effective date of this ordinance or any amendment to it, that does not meet the minimum area or lot width requirements of the zoning district in which it is located.
   *   Nonconforming project. Any structure, development, or undertaking that is incomplete at the effective date of this ordinance and would be inconsistent with any regulation to the district in which it is located if completed as proposed or planned.
   Non-cut-off light. A light fixture which does not cut-off all upward transmission of light.
   Nursing home, rest home, convalescent home or home for the aged. A facility or housing development in which an agency, organization, or individual provides care for three (3) or more sick, handicapped, and/or aged persons, not related by blood or marriage to the operator. Such congregate care facilities are classified as "dependent living facilities" or "independent living facilitates" depending upon the degree of support services on site.
   Ocean erodible AEC. Covers North Carolina's beaches and any other oceanfront lands that are subject to long-term erosion and significant shoreline changes. The seaward boundary of this AEC is the mean low water line. The landward limit of the AEC is measured from the first line of stable natural vegetation and is determined by adding:
   *   A distance equal to sixty (60) times the long-term, average annual erosion rate from that stretch of shoreline to the distance of erosion expected during a major storm.
   The width of the AEC varies from about one hundred forty-five (145) feet to more than seven hundred (700) feet.
   Off street parking. Parking of vehicles which occurs on a lot and not on a street or other public right of way.
   Office. A use or structure in which business or professional services are conducted or rendered.
   Open space. Any area which is not divided into private or civic building lots, streets, rights of way, parking, or easements. In the low impact subdivision, open space may also include portions of private building lots subject to a permanent open space easement. Urban open space assumes one or more of the forms detailed in subdivision ordinance, and may contain recreation equipment and amenities as indicated. Rural open space is site specific in its designation.
   Open space, common area. Common area open spaces are designed to serve the residents of the immediate block or neighborhood. Ownership and maintenance of such common areas shall be in fee simple title to a homeowners association or similar organization.
   Open space, public. Public open spaces shall be dedicated to a local government or nonprofit conservancy organization for ownership and maintenance. Public open spaces shall maintain free and public access. Hours of access may be restricted in accordance with health and safety guidelines.
   Ordinance. This ordinance, including any amendments. Whenever the effective date of the ordinance is referred to, the reference includes the effective date of any amendment to it.
   Out parcel. A parcel of land associated with and located within a shopping center, mall or big box development, which is designated on an approved site plan as a location for a structure with an intended use.
   Outdoor lighting. Any light source that is installed or mounted outside of an enclosed building, but not including street lights installed or maintained along public or private streets.
   Outdoor recreation. Swimming pools, tennis courts, ball fields, and ball courts which are not enclosed in buildings and are operated on a commercial or membership basis primarily for the use of persons who do not reside on the same lot as that on which the recreational use is located.  Outdoor recreation shall include any accessory uses, such as snack bars, pro shops, and club houses which are designed and intended primarily for the use of patrons of the principal recreational use.
   Owner. Any full or part owner, joint owner tenant in common, tenant in partnership, joint tenant or tenant by the entirety with legal title to the whole or to part of a structure or parcel of land.
   Parking area. For a residential use, a parking area is the area just past the driveway. Traditionally located in the front of the home or under the home.
   Parking space, off-street. For the purposes of this ordinance, an off-street parking space shall consist of a space adequate for parking an automobile with room for opening doors in both sides, together with properly related access to a public street or alley and maneuvering room.
   Person. An individual, corporation, governmental agency, business trust, estate trust, partnership, association, two (2) or more persons having a joint or common interest, or any other legal entity.
   Pervious. Having pores or openings that permit liquids to pass through. Marl, ABC stone, crush and run and other similar surfaces are not considered pervious.
   Pier. A structure extending into or along the water for use as a landing place for boats or as a promenade.
   Planning board. The Town of Surf City planning board, established by ordinance in accordance with N.C.G.S. 160D-301 and 160D-307.
   Planned unit development. Land under unified control which is planned and developed as a whole in a single development operation or a programmed series of operations, including all land and buildings for principal and accessory structures and uses substantially related to the character of the district. The planned unit development shall be developed according to comprehensive and detailed sites and the like, but also site plans, floor plans, and elevations of all buildings as intended to be located, constructed, used and related to each other and detailed plans for other uses and improvements on land as related to the building. The planned unit development shall also make provisions for the operation and maintenance of such areas, improvements, facilities, and service as will be for common use by some or all of the occupants of the planned unit development, but will not be provided, operated or maintained at the expense of the general public.
   Planting strip. The area of land along the front property line parallel to the outside of the right-of-way reserved for tree planting and landscaping.
   Principal building or structure. A building or structure containing the principal use of the lot.
   Principal use. The primary purpose or function that a lot serves or is proposed to serve.
   Project area. Any area of land and/or water, regardless of the number of individual parcels contained therein, on which development is proposed under these regulations.
   Public oriented recreational facilities. For either passive or active recreational uses used by groups such as youth, families, civic groups, etc. Examples of public oriented recreational facilities may include Boys and Girls clubs, YMCA's and Boy/Girl Scouts.
   Public trust areas. Coastal waters and submerged lands that every person has the right to use for activities such as boating, swimming or fishing. These areas often overlap with estuarine waters, but also include many inland fishing waters. The following lands and waters are considered public trusts areas:
   *   All waters of the Atlantic Ocean and the lands underneath, from the normal high water mark on shore to the state's official boundary three miles offshore;
   *   All navigable natural water bodies and the lands underneath, to the normal high watermark on shore (a body of water is considered navigable if you can float a canoe in it). This does not include privately owned lakes where the public doesn't have access rights;
   *   All water in artificially created water bodies that have significant public fishing resources and are accessible to the public from other waters; and
   *   All waters in artificially created water bodies where the public has acquired rights by prescription, custom, usage, dedication or any other means.
   Quasi-judicial decision. A decision involving the finding of facts regarding a specific application of a development regulation and that requires the exercise of discretion when applying the standards of the regulation. The term includes, but is not limited to, decisions involving variances, special use permits, and appeals of administrative determinations.
   Redevelopment. The demolition and reconstruction of a building or structure or a portion of a building or structure.
   Religious institution. A church, synagogue, temple, mosque, or other place of religious worship, including any customary accessory uses or structure, such as a school, day care center, cemetery or residential dwelling located on the same lot.
   Residential use. Any detached, duplex, triplex, quadriplex, attached or multifamily dwelling, manufactured home, mobile home, group home for up to six clients, limited residence boarding house or dormitory.
   Restaurant. A building or operation, the purpose of which is to accommodate the consumption of food and beverages.
   Retail establishments. A building, property, or activity the principal use or purpose of which is the sale of goods, products, or merchandise directly to the consumer.
   School. Institutions that provide a place of academic learning. Publicly owned or privately owned preschools, elementary schools, middle schools, junior high schools, vocational schools, and high schools; but not including institutions the primary function of which is day care. Schools include customary accessory uses such as recreational facilities, cafeterias, and auditoriums.
   Screening. A fence, wall, hedge, landscaping, buffer area or any combination of these provided to create a visual separation between certain land uses. A screen may be located on the property line or elsewhere on the site, as determined by the use to be screened.
   Scroll. A mode of message transition on an EMC where the message appears to move vertically or horizontally across the display surface.
   Services. Occupation contributing to the welfare of others which is useful labor that does not produce a tangible commodity.
   Setback line. The line on the front, rear, and sides of a lot, which delineates the area upon which a structure may be built and maintained.
   Shelter, fallout. A structure or portion of a structure that provides protection to human life during periods of danger from nuclear fallout, air raids, storms, or other emergencies.
   Shopping center. Mercantile establishment consisting of a carefully landscaped complex of shops representing leading merchandisers; usually includes restaurants and a convenient parking area; a modern version of the traditional marketplace. May also referred to as a mall or plaza.
   Sign. For the purpose of the sign regulations, the following definitions are provided:
   *   Building roof line: That point at which a structure's walls and its roof are attached.
   *   Building roof peak: The highest or uppermost point of a structure's roof. A structure's roof shall be the building's primary structure for providing weather protection on the top of the building and shall not include any secondary or cosmetic structures or additions which are not integral to the purpose of the primary roof structure.
   *   Business establishment: Any establishment doing business under a common ownership and/or individual control.
   *   Commercial structure: Any structure or freestanding commercial building which may contain any number of business establishments having a common roof or a facade.
   *   Estuarine shoreline: Any water shoreline which is especially vulnerable to erosion, flooding or other adverse effects of wind and water.
   *   Licensee: The person holding a license or written permission for some specific purpose.
   *   Decoration: A three dimensional object that does not depict anything sold by the business, that is attached to any side of a building and not on a roof.
   *   Signs: Any words, lettering, numerals, parts of letters or numerals, figures, phrases, sentences, emblems, devices, decoration, designs, trade names, registered trade marks, banners, insignia or other representation used as a means to designate or attract attention to an individual, a firm, an association, a corporation, a profession, a business, a commodity or product which are exposed to the public view, and used to attract attention. A sign may also consist of sources of illumination, unmarked pennants, streamers, or any other device that are displayed to draw attention to a charitable, residential, institutional, commercial or industrial establishment or activity. Excluding merchant wares, streamers used for holiday and festival celebrations are excluded.
   *   A frame: A temporary sign consisting of two sign faces attached back to back by top hinges.
   *   Attached sign: Any sign painted or affixed to the face of the outside wall or roof of any building and supported throughout by such wall or roof.
   *   Banner sign: Any sign having the characters, letters, or illustrations, or ornamentation applied to cloth, paper, plastic, or fabric, including pennants and wind operated devices.
   *   Bare bulb lighted sign: A sign illuminated through the use of exposed light bulbs which are incorporated as an integral part of said sign.
   *   Construction sign: Any sign identifying on-site construction and any future development to occur on the property on which the sign is located.
   *   Directional sign: Any sign for public direction or information containing no advertising or commercial identification of any product or service.
   *   Double-faced sign: A sign with two (2) parallel or nearly parallel faces back to back and located not more than twenty-four (24) inches from each other are considered as one (1) sign.
   *   Entrance sign: Any sign identifying a subdivision or other large development and located at the major entrance point or points to such development.
   *   Flashing sign: Any sign which contains or uses for illumination any lights or lighting device or devices which change color, flash, or alternate, shows movement or motion, or changes the appearance of said sign or any part thereof automatically.
   *   Freestanding sign: Any single, double faced, or cube sign advertising on-site sale of products or services. Such signs are not attached to or painted on a building but are permanently affixed to the ground.
   *   Indirectly illuminated sign: A sign illuminated by an external light source.
   *   Internally illuminated sign: A sign where the light source is concealed within the sign visible through a translucent surface.
   *   Itinerant merchant sign: A sign purchased by a merchant, other than a merchant with an established retail store in the town, who transports an inventory of goods to a building, vacant lot, or other location in the town, and who, at that location, displays the goods for sale at retail for less than six (6) consecutive months.
   *   Marquee sign: A projecting sign attached to or hung from a canopy or covered structure projecting from and supported by a building.
   *   Neon lighted sign: A sign illuminated by a glass tube usually with bright colors bent into forms to produce letters, symbols, and other shapes.
   *   Off-site sign: Any sign advertising a product or service, which product or service is not available for sale or performance at the place where the sign is located.
   *   Portable sign: Any sign which is not securely and permanently attached to the ground or building.
   *   Projecting sign: An outdoor advertising display sign affixed to any building wall or structure and extending beyond the building wall, structure, building line, or property line more than six (6) inches.
   *   Real estate sign: Any sign advertising real estate for sale or rent.
   *   Roof sign: Any outdoor advertising display sign erected, constructed, or maintained above the roof of any building.
   *   Sandwich board or "A" frame sign: A small eight (8) sq. ft. movable A frame sign which is removed at the end of the day.
   *   Shingle sign: Any sign erected perpendicular to the front wall of a building attached to the wall or the underside of any overhang connected to and supported by the wall.
   *   Temporary sign: Any non-permanent sign, banner, placard, decorations or the like, constructed of light materials for the promotion of commercial enterprises, political signs, or events.
   *   Time and temperature indicator: Those electronic signs which periodically indicate time and/or temperature changes only.
   *   Wall sign: Any sign that shall be affixed flat to the wall or extend no more than six (6) inches from the wall of any building.
   Sign, principal. A sign which directs attention to a business, commodity, services, entertainment or other activity, conducted, sold or offered exclusively on the premises upon which said sign is located.
   Sign, outdoor advertising. Any sign either freestanding or attached to a structure which directs attention to a business, commodity, services, entertainment or other activity conducted, sold or offered elsewhere than on the premises on which said sign is located.
   Signs, surface area of. The surface area of a sign shall be computed as including the entire area within a regular geometric form of combinations of regular geometric forms comprising all of the display area of the sign and including all of the elements of the matter displayed. Frames and structural members not bearing advertising matter shall not be included in computation of surface area.
   Sign, temporary. A sign permitted for a period not exceeding twelve (12) months including for sale, for rent, construction company's name, subcontractor's names, architect's and planner's names.
   Spa/hot tub. See swimming pool.
   Special use permit. A permit issued to authorize development or land uses in a particular zoning district upon presentation of competent, material, and substantial evidence establishing compliance with one or more general standards requiring that judgment and discretion be exercised as well as compliance with specific standards. This definition includes permits previously referred to as conditional use permits.
   Static message. Messages that contain static messages only, and do not have movement, or the appearance or optical illusion of movement during the static display period, of any part of the sign structure, design, or pictorial segment of the sign, including the movement or appearance.
   Storage, outdoor. All goods and materials not returned to an fully enclosed building at the end of each business day, regardless of whether such goods or materials are kept on the premises for retail sale, wholesale sale, storage, or use by a business on or off the lot. (To be classified as goods for sale and therefore exempt from regulation as outdoor storage, items must be placed with a fully enclosed building at the end of each business day). Up to two storage trailers placed on a single lot or in conjunction with a single principal use. All items awaiting or in process of repair except customary passenger vehicles awaiting repair which are not visibly damaged or are not used or intended to be used as "parts" vehicles (rather than being consider outdoor storage, such vehicles may await repair in any conforming off street parking lot associated with the principal use). Vehicles with more than two (2) axles, boats, manufactured homes, and trailers of tractor trailers awaiting or in the process of repair. Does not include construction equipment, where permitted, outdoor storage of construction equipment is regulated.
   Stores. Business establishments where usual diversified goods are kept for retail sale.
   Street line. The right-of-way boundary of a street.
   Street, private. An interior circulation road designed and constructed to carry vehicular traffic from public streets within or adjoining a site to parking and service areas; it is not maintained nor intended to be maintained by the public.
   Street, public. A right of way or fee simple tract of land which has been set aside for public travel, dedicated to the public by the recording of a subdivision plat, built to public street standards, and accepted for maintenance by either the Town of Surf City or the State of North Carolina.
   Street right-of-way. Street right of way shall mean any public right of way set aside for public travel which is accepted or eligible to be accepted for maintenance by the State of North Carolina or the Town of Surf City if so authorized; or has been dedicated for public travel by the recording of a plat or a subdivision which has been approved or is subsequently approved by the town; or has otherwise been established as a public street prior to the adoption of this ordinance.
   Structure. Anything constructed or erected with a fixed location on the ground or attached to something having a fixed location on the ground. The connection of two (2) buildings by means of an open porch, breezeway, carport, or any other structure with or without a roof shall not be deemed to make them one building.
   Subdivider. Any person, firm or corporation who subdivides or develops any land deemed to be a subdivision as defined in the Subdivision Ordinance of the Town of Surf City.
   Substantial improvement. Any repair, reconstruction, expansion, or improvement of a structure, the cost of which exceeds fifty (50) percent of the assessed value of a structure as determined either before the expansion or improvement begins or before the damage occurred giving rise to the repair or reconstruction. Substantial improvement shall not include, however, any repair or improvement required to bring the structure into compliance with existing state or town health, sanitary, safety, or building code specifications necessary to ensure safe habitation of the structure.
   Swimming pool. A water-filled enclosure, permanently constructed or portable, having a depth of more than eighteen (18) inches below the level of the surrounding land, or an above ground pool having a depth of more than thirty (30) inches designed, used, and maintained for swimming and bathing. This includes in-ground, above ground and on ground swimming pools, hot tubs and spas.
   Temporary structure. A building placed on a lot for a specific purpose which is to be removed within a specified time period. Examples of temporary structures are monitoring station, mobile class room, construction trailer, and produce stand.
   Town attorney. The attorney for the Town of Surf City, duly retained by the town council of the Town of Surf City.
   Townhouse. A single-family dwelling located on a lot, forming one (1) of a group or series of two (2) or more attached single-family dwellings separated from one another by party walls without doors, windows, or other provisions for human passage or visibility through walls from basement to roof and having roofs which may extend from one (1) such dwelling unit to another.
   Town council. The elected governing body of the Town of Surf City.
   Town manager. The top administrative person responsible for the day to day operations of the Town of Surf City.
   Town planner. The appointed person responsible for the administration and enforcement of this ordinance. Town planner may also be his designee.
   Tract. A tract is a piece of land whose boundaries have been described or delineated by a legal instrument or map recorded in the office of the register of deeds.
   Travel trailer. A wheeled vehicular portable structure built on a chassis, designed to be used as a temporary dwelling for travel and/or recreational purposes, having a body width not exceeding eight (8) feet. This is also intended to include structures mounted on auto or truck bodies that are referred to as campers.
   Travel trailer lot. A plot of land within a travel trailer park designed for the accommodation of one (1) travel trailer.
   TV dish antenna. Earth satellite receiving stations, hereafter called dish, TV dish, or dish antennas, are dish-shaped structures and located as to receive electromagnetic signals from space satellites.
   Unbuildable Oceanfront lot. Any lot that does not allow for the construction of a single family home under the CAMA regulations.
   University, college, and junior college. A use, whether privately owned or publicly owned, providing academic education beyond the high school level.
   Variance. A variance is a dispensation of the terms of the zoning ordinance where such variance will not be contrary to the public interest and where, owing to conditions peculiar to the property and not the result of the action of the applicant, a literal enforcement of the ordinance would result in unnecessary and undue hardship. As used in this ordinance, a variance is authorized only for height, area, and size of structure or size of yards and open spaces; establishment or expansion of use otherwise prohibited shall not be allowed by variance nor shall a variance be granted because of the presence of nonconformity in the zoning district or uses in an adjoining zoning district.
   Vested rights. The right of an owner of property to undertake and complete the development and use of property under the terms and conditions of an approved site specific vesting plan or phased development plan.
   *   Approval authority: In the case of applications for establishment of vested rights with respect to proposed subdivisions pursuant to the subdivision ordinance, the approval authority shall be the town council. In the case of all other applications for establishment of vested rights, the approval authority shall be the town council.
   *   Multi-phased development means a development containing 25 acres or more that is both of the following: (1) submitted for development permit approval to occur in more than one phase and (2) subject to a master development plan with committed elements showing the type and intensity of use of each phase.
   *   Owner: Any owner of a legal or equitable interest in real property, including heirs, devisees, successors and assigns, having a vested estate, and the agent or personal representative of such owner. For purposes of this article, owner shall include a person holding a valid and recorded option to purchase the real property with respect to which he seeks to establish a vested right.
   *   Site specific vesting plan: A plan that has been submitted to the town by an owner, describing with reasonable specificity the type and intensity of use for a specific parcel or parcels of property. At a minimum, such plan must include the approximate boundaries of the site; significant topographic and other natural features affecting development of the site; approximate location on the site of proposed buildings, structures and other improvements; approximate dimensions, including height, of the proposed buildings and other structures; and the approximate location of all existing and proposed infrastructure on the site, including water, sewer, roads, and pedestrian walkways. Included within this definition are plans submitted pursuant to the following specific provisions, and meeting the requirements specified therein: 1) site plan review, 2) preliminary subdivision plan, 3) special use permit, 4) Any areas of environmental concern (AEC'S) as designated by the N.C. CAMA which are present or adjacent to the site. Notwithstanding the foregoing, no document that fails to describe the type and intensity of use for a specified parcel or parcels with sufficient particularity to allow a determination to be made as to whether the proposed case meets current zoning standards shall constitute a site specific vesting plan.
   Vocational school. A use, whether privately owned or publicly owned, that trains persons in specific trades or occupations such as boat building, mechanics, computers, or similar skills.
   Water dependent structures. Those structures for which the use requires access or proximity to or sitting within surface waters to fulfill its basic purpose, such as boat ramps, boat houses, docks, piers, bulkheads, and similar structures. Ancillary facilities such as restaurants, outlets for boat supplies, parking lots, and commercial boat storage areas are not water dependent structures.
   Yard. A required open space unoccupied and unobstructed by a structure or portion of a structure, provided however that fences, walls, poles, posts, other customary yard accessories, yard ornaments, and yard furniture, and normal roof overhangs (not exceeding two (2) feet) may be permitted in any yard subject to height limitations and requirements limiting obstruction of visibility or movement.
   Yard, front. An area extending between side lot lines across the front of a lot adjoining a street. Depth of required front yards shall be measured at right angles to a straight line joining the foremost point of the side lot lines at which the lot meets the normal minimum lot width required by the ordinance. In the case of lots with rounded property corners at street intersections, the foremost point of the lot lines shall be assumed to be the point at which the side and front lines would have met without such rounding.
   Yard, rear. An area extending across the full width of the lot and lying between the rear lot line and a line parallel thereto at a distance therefrom as required in the applicable district.
   Yard, side. An area extending along the length of the lot between the required front yard and the required rear yard, and between the side lot line and a line parallel thereto and a distance therefrom as required in the various districts.
   Yard, corner side. An area extending the length of the lot between the required front yard and required rear yard, and between the side street lot line and a line thereto and a distance therefrom as required in the various districts.
   Zoning permit. A written warrant as described in section 11 issued by the town planner authorizing the particular use of activity. A building permit is a written warrant issued by the building inspector authorizing construction, renovation or demolition.
(Ord. No. 2004-36, 11-3-04; Ord. No. 2006-19, 4-4-06; Ord. No. 2006-45, 11-8-06; Ord. No. 2006-52, 12-5-06; Ord. No. 2007-33, 7-5-07; Ord. No. 2008-05, 5-7-08; Ord. No. 2009-06A, 6-2-09; Ord. No. 2010-07, § 1, 5-4-10; Ord. No. 2019-01, § 1 (part), 1-2-19; Ord. No. 2019-05, § I (part), 8-6-19; Ord. No. 2020-03, § I (part), 7-7-20; Ord. No. 2020-10, 12-1-20)