Stories from the NFCCA Newsletter, the “Northwood News”

Northwood News ♦ April 2002

KFC Seeks Exception to Its ‘Adverse Effects’

Drive-through restaurants are not permitted in C-4 zones unless the Board of Appeals grants a special exception.  To get a special exception, KFC/Pizza Hut must convince the Board — on at least 10 different points — that “inherent and non-inherent adverse affects” of a drive-through restaurant will not injure or be a nuisance to nearby properties and the general neighborhood.  And they must show that the county needs one, due to an insufficient number of drive-throughs nearby, and that it will not cause a saturation of such uses in the same general neighborhood.

Inherent adverse effects are “the physical and operational characteristics necessarily associated with the particular use....”  Such effects might include:  the fast-food business model, delivery of food and supplies in large trucks, customer traffic, trash storage and removal, noise and odors, lighting and signage, etc.

Under zoning section 59-G-1.21, General Conditions (a), KFC/Pizza Hut must show that the proposed use is:

  1. a permissible special exception in C-4 (it is);
  2. complies with the standards and requirements in 59-G-2.16 specific to a drive-through (see below);
  3. consistent with the physical development of the district and its adopted and approved master plan;
  4. in harmony with the general character of the neighborhood, i.e., population density, design, scale, and bulk of new structures, intensity and character of activity, traffic and parking conditions and number of similar uses;
  5. not detrimental to the use, peaceful enjoyment, economic value of surrounding properties and the general neighborhood;
  6. not a cause of objectionable noise, vibrations, fumes, odors, dust, illumination, glare at the site;
  7. not, when considered in conjunction with existing and approved special exceptions in any neighboring one-family residential area [such as the special exception in place for the Woodmoor Center’s back parking lot], a cause of increased number, intensity, or scope of special exception uses sufficient to affect the area adversely or alter the predominantly residential nature of the area;
  8. not an adverse effect to the health, safety, security, morals, or general welfare of residents, visitors, or workers in the area;
  9. served by adequate public services and facilities including schools, police and fire protection, water, sanitary sewer, public roads, storm drainage; and
  10. in regard to findings related to public roads, the Board must determine that the proposed use will have no detrimental effect on the safety of vehicular or pedestrian traffic.

KFC/Pizza Hut, in addition to showing that the proposed drive-through meets all the above specific standards and requirements, must meet those under the special exception part specific to drive-through restaurants, section 59-G-2.16.  This section has seven subsections, several of which repeat requirements from elsewhere (noise, odor, lighting glare, screening from adjacent residences, etc.).  But its sub-part (b) is worth quoting in this case:

The use at the proposed location will not create a traffic hazard or traffic nuisance because of its location in relation to similar uses, necessity of turning movements in relation to its access to public roads and intersections, or its location in relation to other buildings or proposed buildings on or near the site and the traffic patterns from such buildings or cause frequent turning movements across sidewalks and pedestrian ways, thereby disrupting pedestrian circulation within a concentration of retail activity.

   © 2002 NFCCA  [Source:]