11/30/10 121 W - + 10 - 9 Apartment Owners Group Wants Pine Straw Ban Delayed

As this NBC17 story reports, the Triangle Apartment Association is requesting Raleigh leaders postpone the city's new pine straw ban. That ordinance goes into effect tomorrow, December 1, and requires that pine straw be keep at least 10 feet away from all multi-family structures. The ordinance was first discussed after 12 buildings with 38 homes were damaged or destroyed in the Pine Knoll Townes fire of February 2007. It was passed after seven houses burned in the Highland Creek neighborhood in March of this year. The complaint of the apartment association is that the change is costing too much money, with the law placed into effect in the same budget year that it was passed. Read that story.

I can’t believe the law even passed. This has got to be one of the biggest embarrassments the city has ever brought on itself.
RescueRanger - 11/30/10 - 20:42

Mike, what is an apartmenter? :-)
stretch - 11/30/10 - 20:56

That is a good question, Stretch…
Legeros - 11/30/10 - 20:59

I guess it’s a case of “Pine straw vs. Building codes” (exterior structural finish – aka vinyl)......... Score: Pine straw = 0, Building codes = 1. The pine straw ordinance is a cheaper alternative to reduce the fire loss in these target hazards. However, hopefully more lobbying can be conducted to make the exterior finishes of these structures more fire resistive – somewhat “in kind” with the 13R for sprinkler systems.
A.C. Rich - 12/01/10 - 12:43

What are the downsides of such codes and enforcement therein?
Legeros - 12/01/10 - 20:11

As you all know here in Apex we were the first in Wake Co. to approve such a ban, our ordinance is the most stringent and worded to include all buildings with the exception of free standing single family homes, since town homes are considered single family homes in the building code the other ordinances in the area do not cover town homes. We used the approace of education with all of the commercial properties notifying them in advance and allowing them to keep any existing mulch material until it was scheduled for replacement.
DDillon - 12/01/10 - 20:44

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