Details For Property at 601 NW 'A' Street
Below you will find the most recent survey that I have access to regarding our home. I do not believe the dimensions are exactly accurate, because calculating the Sq Ft based on this drawing gives a slightly smaller footprint than the official Benton County records. The difference is minor, but I did want to point it out.
City of Bentonville Records: Lot Size = 10, 454 Sq. Ft. ------ This survey map: 148.00 x 70.00 = 10,360 Sq. Ft.
The TEAL highlights were added by me, along with the brown comment regarding the alley space. I've added those calculations for those who might be interested in splitting this lot for development.
The designated zoning for our property is DN-2, which allows for a minimum lot size of 5,000 Sq. Ft. Since we have over 10,000 Sq. Ft., we qualify from the minimum lot size requirement. However, I've added in my own measures of where the lot split would need to occur, and the setbacks for the existing house are not large enough to meet the city requirements. If my memory is correct, the backyard would need 25' clearance from the property line. I've added a link to the bottom of this page that goes into very specific detail about the DN-2 zoning requirements.
I'm fairly certain that the city has the ability to grant a waiver on the 25' clearance, but that would have to be addressed with the city staff. I have heard that part of the city's overall plan is to keep all new driveway entrances off of NW A Street, and make the entrances off side streets or alleys. Since our home has an entrance from both NW A Street and NW 6th Street, you could probably use a strategy of offering to close off the NW A Street entrance in exchange for a waiver on the property offsets. This is no guarantee, but only my thoughts on the subject of a lot split.
For the back property, you could build another unit, and the city is using the 15' alley as entrance to those properties. This gives a little more land for house and yard.
I do think that you could build a second house on this property, even if you didn't get a lot split. This would mean that, when you sell, you could not sell as 2 different houses, but both as 1 property. If you are inclined to run an AirBnB, you could probably build to suit that business model. There are many people coming in to NWA for our many activities, and AirBnB is a very popular alternative to hotels. This location would be perfect, as everything is in walking / biking distance.
All of the information above are my thoughts and understanding in regards to setbacks, waivers, and potential development that can be done with this property. I am not an architect, nor am I an expert on city regulations and policy. You would need to verify this information with the City of Bentonville prior to purchasing to ensure that I am accurate in my understanding.
Here is a link to a draft of the Bentonville Community Plan for Neighborhoods. Our home is located in the RED area around Downtown Bentonville, and is considered the Areas of Neighborhood Transformation. According to the City of Bentonville, the Areas of Neighborhood Transformation are:
Areas of neighborhood transformation: Where existing neighborhoods are experiencing redevelopment due to a number of factors, including the age or condition of housing, proximity to other amenities, or the cost of land.
Because of this designation, I believe the City of Bentonville would be eager to work with a developer in the restoration or remaking of this property.
For those who are interested, the link below (ORD 2016-141 Downtown Residential Zoning Districts) was passed in 2016 and gives all of the zoning regulations that would be used in regards to our property. Our property would be designated DN-2 (Downtown Medium-Density Residential), which is referenced in the document link below.
DN-2 - Downtown Medium-Density Residential - The intent of the DN-2 district is to allow for an increased single-family density through small lot widths where alleys and infrastructure support such development, and where small-lot single family development provides an appropriate transition between large-lot residential areas and those of higher density. In some instances, such as the end of blocks, townhouses may be appropriate in this district. (Copied from the Downtown Neighborhood Zoning Districts)