MATTHEWS – Seven homeowners within Meadows at Matthews want to put six-foot-high fences along the front yard setback along N.C. 51 near the Sardis Road intersection. 

Last year, three of the owners received code violations for having six-foot fences in their front yard setbacks. The town doesn’t allow fences higher than four feet within Residential - Varied Styles zoning district. 

They were denied variances and worked with town staff on crafting a text amendment that would allow the fences, according to Senior Planner Rob Will. Realizing the amendment could impact up to 30 home in town, commissioners opted to apply flexible design standards within the R-VS zoning district to these seven specific homes.

“This solution that is proposed by the planning department does sound extremely reasonable for all of our neighbors because it does solve the unique problems for these seven lots and not going to affect any other properties in our town,” Meadows at Matthews homeowner Oleg Konyk told the board during the Sept. 13 public hearing. 

Konyk said that with the unique design of the neighborhood, their front yards serve as backyards. In the rezoning application, he wrote that a recent tornado destroyed vegetation that provided a barrier to N.C. 51 and that the 100-foot setback from the street makes it impossible to have privacy. 

Mayor John Higdon and Commissioner Jeff Miller said they support the idea. 

“I think these seven lots are very unique in Matthews,” Higdon said. “The front yards really serve as a backyard for all intents and purposes.”

The board may approve the measure next month.

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