Setback

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Setback

A distance from a curb, property line, or structure within which building is prohibited.

Setbacks are building restrictions imposed on property owners. Local governments create setbacks through ordinances and Building Codes, usually for reasons of public policy such as safety, privacy, and environmental protection. Setbacks prevent landowners from crowding the property of others, allow for the safe placement of pipelines, and help to preserve wetlands. Setbacks form boundaries by establishing an exact distance from a fixed point, such as a property line or an adjacent structure, within which building is prohibited. Generally, prospective buyers learn that land is subject to setback provisions when they are considering purchasing it. This information is important to future development plans, because setbacks remain in effect until changed by law or special action of a local government.

Setbacks can significantly affect a property owner's right to develop land or to modify existing structures on the land. For this reason they can influence property values; severe restrictions on land can decrease its value. Violating setback provisions can lead to legal action against a property owner, and penalties can include fines as well as an order to remove noncompliant structures. Property owners whose desire to build is stymied by setbacks have few remedies. They can petition their local government by applying for a variance—a special permission to depart from the requirements of Zoning ordinances—but variances are generally granted only in cases of extreme hardship. Litigation over setbacks is common.

Cross-references

Land-Use Control.

See: adversity, casualty, damper, debacle, decline, defeat, delay, disadvantage, disaster, effect, hindrance, impediment, misfortune, plight, relapse, toll, trouble
References in periodicals archive ?
So why do we allow our past setbacks to stifle us from achieving future success?
According to Essa Al Haj Al Maidour, the deputy director-general of Dubai Municipality, the setback distance regulations are implemented in Dubai Marina, where several skyscrapers are located, as well.
Consequently, operators need to conservatively guess a fixed setpoint transition duration, so that all offices can reach the setpoint temperature from the nighttime setback before occupants start arriving.
Of course, it's easy to get bogged down in the negatives and on what went wrong, but instead of wallowing in the setback, turn it into a learning experience.
And he suggests that the county, should it want to expand the riparian setbacks for water quality purposes, "save its money" and purchase the land.
Part of Georgia Tech's initial conservation strategy was to implement night setback temperature offsets for noncritical spaces.
While ID continues to make its way through courts and local elections, antievolutionists, fearing setbacks, are transitioning to yet another offshoot of creationism: "critical analysis.
Through careful thought and planning, we were able to integrate the setbacks into a design that not only flowed, but seemed much larger.
Five days later, the NYT had to report "In Nebraska and Tennessee, more setbacks to gay rights: Court rulings add to defeats elsewhere" (July 15, 2006).
However, with 10[degrees] setbacks, the home-owner can expect 5 percent to 30 percent savings on annual energy bills, depending on location.
High achievers experience at least as many setbacks as everyone else, and often quite a few more.
The 90,000-seater stadium has been plagued by setbacks, from buckled sewer pipes and industrial action to a sniper demanding pounds 27million not to shoot at crane operators working there.