Little Gasparilla Island Community Plan
The BBIOD restricts new residential densities to a maximum of one dwelling unit per one gross acre or one unit per platted lot. The current zoning and future land use designations allow for higher densities, as well as for commercial uses. The community wants to eliminate the discrepancies between the BBIOD, the zoning, and the future land use designations. Ultimately, zoning and future land use should allow only single-family units on a minimum lot size of one acre or on a previously platted lot.
Of the 273 vacant residential parcels, 240 (88%) are smaller than 0.5 acres; 13 (5%) are between 0.5 and 1 acre, and 20 (7%) are larger than 1 acre. Should development continue unchecked on these vacant parcels, the BBIOD’s goal of one dwelling unit per gross acre would be unattainable. The community wants to find mechanisms to reduce the number of parcels available for development and thereby approximate the goal of the overlay. The LGI Advisory Committee discussed some potential mechanisms, such as land acquisition for conservation, incentives to aggregate small lots, or transfer of development rights.
Conversely, the zoning and future land use designations should allow for limited public or commercial uses to meet basic community needs, such as emergency management. The limited existing non-residential uses, such as golf cart repair and the water treatment plant should be allowed to remain as non-residential uses. The community also expressed a strong desire to have an on-island site where they can meet and hold public meetings and other community activities. This plan includes provisions to help the community establish a public area to meet these needs.
While the community desires some public or commercial uses on the island, it also wants to ensure that such uses are limited. Therefore, this plan calls for limits on the number of parcels and total parcel area potential devoted to public or commercial uses (see Policy 1.3.2).
Finally, the community needs clarification on the treatment of non-conforming uses. Existing non-conforming uses should be inventoried and recorded and their current status should be grandfathered. Also, the 50% replacement rule should be clarified for the island. Charlotte County Code, Section 3-9-10, Nonconformities, applies to the Little Gasparilla Island as well.
3.3 Goals, Objectives and Policies
Goal 1. Maintain and protect Little Gasparilla Island’s low-density residential nature, while providing for limited non-residential uses to meet community needs.
Objective 1.1. Complete zoning revisions to guarantee that residential density on Little Gasparilla Island shall not exceed the requirement of the BBIOD.
Policy 1.1.1. New zoning categories will be developed for Little Gasparilla Island to address the overlapping regulations including BBIOD, RMF-T, and Medium Density Residential Future Land Use designations.
Citizens of Little Gasparilla Island
LGI Advisory Committee