Neighborhoods near TCU face proposed zoning change reducing unrelated occupancy limit

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Fort Worth city councilmembers will attend a briefing this month about the proposed TCU zoning overlay.

Dana Burghdoff, Fort Worth’s deputy planning and development director, said an official date has not been set, but the briefing is being planned for and will more than likely happen later this month.

The city has proposed lowering the number of unrelated occupants in single-family homes in an area surrounding TCU from five to three.

“If it is a family, it is unlimited,” Burghdoff said.

Opinions about the proposed overlay are split between homeowners who favor the change, Burghdoff said, and investor property owners who do not “because they want to continue to operate as they have been.”

“The neighborhood associations generally support the change,” she said.

Burghdoff said she has heard from less than half a dozen homeowner associations in the area so far, but those are in support of the proposal without a grandfather option.

About a dozen members of the Berkeley Place Neighborhood Association met in July to discuss the matter.

“We took a straw poll,” Greg Jackson, the association’s president wrote in an email. ”Those in attendance unanimously favored the proposed zoning overlay reducing the number of non-related persons living in a single-family residence from five to three.”

In a 109 Facebook post, Becky Gray wrote that she agrees with the proposal.

“I had a rent house behind my last house that was so loud and unbearable I had the police non-emergency number as well as the TCU dean's phone number programmed in my phone,” she wrote. “Reducing the number of people per house may help to eliminate some of these behaviors in our established neighborhoods."

District 3 city councilman Zim Zimmerman said that area neighbors have an issue with three or four bedroom homes being leased to college students who sometimes have all night parties and create parking issues.

While TCU students seem to take much of the flack for parties and parking issues, one 109 resident, who asked to remain anonymous, said when TCU’s chancellor throws a party it is generally no small affair, and navigating down clogged streets isn’t easy.

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