GALLIPOLIS — Gallipolis City Commission gathered in the Gallipolis Municipal Building for a second monthly meeting Tuesday evening where the topic of tiny houses and potential legislation for them was discussed.
According to Gallipolis City Manager Gene Greene, a group of local contractors met at a previous Gallipolis Planning Commission and discussed concerns and potential limits on tiny homes.
Tiny houses have informally been recognized as small, oftentimes custom-made, buildings that can be carried about on trailers. They’ve become the focus of recent home improvement and construction-based television shows. They differ from standard mobile homes in that they typically aren’t constructed on an industrial scale.
Greene said potential legislation may be drafted stating that homes within municipal limits must be a minimum of 1000 square feet of heated living space, built on a permanent foundation, built on-site, must have water, sewer and electrical hookups, and go before the planning commission with construction goals and concerns in mind. Due to smaller lot sizes in town, the commission could potentially issue variances because of the shape or size of the land to be utilized. Greene also said modular homes would fit within potential ordinance limits.
“There were some people wanting to bring them and build them in town,” said Greene. “The concern for me would be the property value of your neighbor…This is something new that’s coming. People are trying to cut utilities, cut costs and save money and I can’t blame them for that, but you don’t want to depreciate your neighbor’s property at the same time. They (tiny homes) can be done tactfully and tasteful. That wouldn’t be a problem and that’s what the planning commission is for.”
Traditional trailers aren’t allowed to become permanent residences within the city, although a few have been legally grandfathered into a previous ordinance. Campers and recreational vehicles can be utilized for sleeping quarters but must have permits from the city and are typically parked in the public access area on the Ohio River banks near the Gallipolis City Park off of First Avenue.
In other news, city commissioners appointed Claudia Miller to serve on the Gallipolis Park Board after previous member Mary Lee Marchi stepped back. Commissioners and Greene lauded Marchi’s years on the board and thanked her for her service.
Dean Wright can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2103.