Under the new rules, additional off-street parking will no longer be required for accessory dwelling units. They will also be allowed on some lots previously deemed too small, so long as stormwater treatment requirements are met.
Meanwhile, the units can be larger than allowed under previous zoning: up to 800 square feet, or 30 percent of the square footage of the principal dwelling, whichever is greater.
One thing that won't change: City permits for the unit will only be issued if the owner of the primary home resides at the property. Once the unit is built, the owner can live in that unit as opposed to the primary home.
In a separate effort, the city's Community Economic Development Office and nonprofit HomeShare Vermont are working on a pilot program to encourage construction of accessory apartments for seniors and low-income residents.
It will include technical assistance to homeowners, standard designs for accessory dwelling units, and matching services for prospective tenants and homeowners.