Sundlun v. Zoning Bd. of Review of City of Pawtucket, No. 487.

CourtRhode Island Supreme Court
Writing for the CourtRATHBUN, J.
Citation145 A. 451
Docket NumberNo. 487.
Decision Date03 April 1929
PartiesSUNDLUN v. ZONING BOARD OF REVIEW OF CITY OF PAWTUCKET.
145 A. 451

SUNDLUN
v.
ZONING BOARD OF REVIEW OF CITY OF PAWTUCKET.

No. 487.

Supreme Court of Rhode Island.

April 3, 1929.


145 A. 452

Petition for certiorari by Walter I. Sundlun against the Zoning Board of Review of the City of Pawtucket, to review a decision of the Board denying application for special exception to the zoning ordinance. Decision of board reversed.

Walter I. Sundlun and Baker & Spicer, all of Providence, for petitioner.

Woolley & Blais and Clarence N. Woolley, all of Pawtucket, for respondent.

RATHBUN, J. This is a petition for a writ of certiorari based upon the provisions of section 2, chapter 430, Pub. Laws, January Session, 1923, passed in amendment of and in addition to chapter 57, G. L. 1923. The petition was filed for the purpose of obtaining a review of the decision of the respondent board denying petitioner's application for a special exception to the Zoning Ordinance of the City of Pawtucket. The writ has been issued, and the respondent board has made return of certified copies of the papers pertaining to said application.

Said chapter 57, as amended by said chapter 430, authorizes, as a police regulation: "For the purpose of promoting health, safety, morals or general welfare," the representative council of the city of Newport and the city councils of other cities by ordinance to divide their respective municipalities into districts and within such districts to "regulate and restrict the erection, construction, reconstruction, alteration, repair or use of buildings, structures or land." "Such regulations shall be made in accordance with a comprehensive plan and designed to lessen congestion in the streets; to secure safety from fire, panic and other dangers; to promote health and the general welfare; to provide adequate light and air; to prevent the overcrowding of land; to avoid undue concentration of population; to facilitate the adequate provision of transportation, water, sewerage, schools, parks and other public requirements. Such regulations shall be made with reasonable consideration, among other things, to the character of the district and its peculiar suitability for particular uses, and with a view to conserving the value of buildings and encouraging the most appropriate use of land throughout such municipality." By authority of said act as amended, the city of Pawtucket adopted a zoning ordinance which became effective February 2, 1928. Said ordinance divided the city into six districts, viz.: Residence districts A, B, and C; business districts; and industrial districts A and B. The petitioner owns a vacant lot situated at the southeast corner of Broadway and Allen avenue in said city. The lot has a frontage of 103.35 feet on Broadway. The petitioner desires to erect on said lot a gasoline filling station. Although the greater part of Broadway is within a business district, a short section thereof, comprising two or three blocks within which the petitioner's lot is situated, is a residence B district. Said chapter 430 authorizes cities, which have by authority of the enabling acts adopted zoning ordinances, to create a board of review with authority "in appropriate cases and subject to appropriate conditions and safeguards," to "make special exceptions to the terms of the ordinance in harmony with its general purpose and intent." By the terms

145 A. 453

of said ordinance gasoline filling stations may be erected within a residence B district, if approved by the board of review. The city of Pawtucket created such a board, which is known as the "Zoning Board of Review of the City of Pawtucket." The petitioner applied to said board for such an exception in the application of the provisions of said ordinance as would permit him to erect a gasoline filling station on his said lot After notice to the public and hearing the application was refused, and the case is before us for review.

When the application was heard by the board, no sworn testimony was taken. The petitioner made a statement, as did also a Mr. McAlevy, who filed a remonstrance signed by 34 persons owning land on or in the vicinity of Broadway and 51 other persons living in the same general vicinity. A clergyman, not a property owner, mailed to the board a letter requesting that the application be denied. The board evidently accepted as evidence the statements of petitioner and Mr. McAlevy. We will also consider said statements. When the case was heard by us, two pieces of documentary evidence were introduced, and it was agreed by counsel that the record contains all evidence that was before the board.

Broadway commences at the northerly line of the city and terminates at Main street at a point very close to the business center of the city. From the petitioner's land to said northerly line, all privately owned land abutting on either side of Broadway, except two blocks and a fraction of another, is zoned for business. Gasoline stations have been erected on Broadway at no great distance from the petitioner's land. Parallel lines of car tracks are maintained in the center of Broadway. A large amount of vehicular traffic, heavy and otherwise, passes over this street, which is the main artery for traffic to and from the north. Across the street from the petitioner's land is a funeral home.

Mr. McAlevy expressed his opinion that a gasoline filling station would depreciate the value of land in the vicinity. His other statements of pertinent facts were as follows: "The tooting of horns, the chuckling of motors, the volumes of monoxide gas from the engines and the dirty grease pit all come under this service. A stream of cars at all hours of the day and night, the loud and boisterous talk and the noise which one hears are not pleasant. Then the privacy of the neighborhood will be destroyed by the building of such a station."

The petitioner's written application to the board gives the following reasons for desiring an exception to the provisions of the ordinance: "Broadway is a main thoroughfare and is traveled heavily by auto vehicles. It is used largely now, both in a northerly and southerly direction of the lot which is the subject of this application, for business purposes. The zoning of this said lot for residence purpose is contrary to its adaptability and suitability for proper use and without regard to reasonable consideration to the character and location of the lot. It would be contrary to good judgment and business sense to erect a residence upon this lot. This thoroughfare is now, and will be more so in the future, essentially busy. It is contrary to the provision of our statute to restrict this lot to residential purposes. Upon...

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48 practice notes
  • Quesenberry v. Estep, No. 10827
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of West Virginia
    • December 22, 1956
    ...of Burlingame, 207 Cal. 134, 277 P. 308; Forbes v. Hubbard, 348 Ill. 166, 180 N.E. 767; Sundlun v. Zoning Board of Review, 50 R.I. 108, 145 A. 451; Standard Oil Company v. City of Bowling Green, 244 Ky. 362, 50 S.W.2d 960, 86 A.L.R. 648; Freeman v. Board of Adjustment, 97 Mont. 342, 34 P.2d......
  • Carter v. City Of Bluefield, No. 10142.
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of West Virginia
    • June 14, 1949
    ...v. Burlingame, 207 Cal. 134, 277 P. 308; Forbes v. Hubbard, 348 111. 166, 180 N.E. 767; Sundlun v. Zoning Board of Review, 50 R.I. 108, 145 A. 451; Standard Oil Company v. City of Bowling Green, 244 Ky. 362, 50 S.W.2d 960, 86 A.L.R. 648; Freeman v. Board of Adjustment, 97 Mont. 342, 34 P.2d......
  • Farley v. Graney, No. CC857
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of West Virginia
    • December 20, 1960
    ...v. Burlingame, 207 Cal. 134, 277 P. 308; Forbes v. Hubbard, 348 Ill. 166, 180 N.E. 767; Sundlun v. Zoning Board of Review, 50 R.I. 108, 145 A. 451; Standard Oil Company v. City of Bowling Green, 244 Ky. 362, 50 S.W.2d 960, 86 A.L.R. 648; Freeman v. Board of Adjustment, 97 Mont. 342, 34 P.2d......
  • Carter v. Bluefield, (No. 10142)
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of West Virginia
    • June 14, 1949
    ...v. Burlingame, 207 Cal. 134, 277 P. 308; Forbes v. Hubbard, 348 111. 166, 180 N. E. 767; Sundlun v. Zoning Board of Review, 50 R. 1.108, 145 A. 451; Standard Oil Company v. City of Bowling Green, 244 Ky. 362, 50 S. W. 2d 960, 86 A. L. R. 648; Freeman v. Board of Adjustment, 97 Mont. 342, 34......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
48 cases
  • Quesenberry v. Estep, No. 10827
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of West Virginia
    • December 22, 1956
    ...of Burlingame, 207 Cal. 134, 277 P. 308; Forbes v. Hubbard, 348 Ill. 166, 180 N.E. 767; Sundlun v. Zoning Board of Review, 50 R.I. 108, 145 A. 451; Standard Oil Company v. City of Bowling Green, 244 Ky. 362, 50 S.W.2d 960, 86 A.L.R. 648; Freeman v. Board of Adjustment, 97 Mont. 342, 34 P.2d......
  • Carter v. City Of Bluefield, No. 10142.
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of West Virginia
    • June 14, 1949
    ...v. Burlingame, 207 Cal. 134, 277 P. 308; Forbes v. Hubbard, 348 111. 166, 180 N.E. 767; Sundlun v. Zoning Board of Review, 50 R.I. 108, 145 A. 451; Standard Oil Company v. City of Bowling Green, 244 Ky. 362, 50 S.W.2d 960, 86 A.L.R. 648; Freeman v. Board of Adjustment, 97 Mont. 342, 34 P.2d......
  • Farley v. Graney, No. CC857
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of West Virginia
    • December 20, 1960
    ...v. Burlingame, 207 Cal. 134, 277 P. 308; Forbes v. Hubbard, 348 Ill. 166, 180 N.E. 767; Sundlun v. Zoning Board of Review, 50 R.I. 108, 145 A. 451; Standard Oil Company v. City of Bowling Green, 244 Ky. 362, 50 S.W.2d 960, 86 A.L.R. 648; Freeman v. Board of Adjustment, 97 Mont. 342, 34 P.2d......
  • Carter v. Bluefield, (No. 10142)
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of West Virginia
    • June 14, 1949
    ...v. Burlingame, 207 Cal. 134, 277 P. 308; Forbes v. Hubbard, 348 111. 166, 180 N. E. 767; Sundlun v. Zoning Board of Review, 50 R. 1.108, 145 A. 451; Standard Oil Company v. City of Bowling Green, 244 Ky. 362, 50 S. W. 2d 960, 86 A. L. R. 648; Freeman v. Board of Adjustment, 97 Mont. 342, 34......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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