I need a legal definition of the word ‘adjacent’ regarding a conditional use permit application.

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I need a legal definition of the word ‘adjacent’ regarding a conditional use permit application.

My city PZ department is using an odd and unsupported interpretation of ‘adjacent’ to prevent city code from applying to a 3- story multi- family housing development. As a neighborhood representative, I need to challenge that interpretation however I can. City code does not define adjacent and the applicable section states that words not defined herein shall be given their normal and common meaning.

Asked on October 17, 2019 under Real Estate Law, Idaho

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

What you wrote, "City code does not define adjacent and the applicable section states that words not defined herein shall be given their normal and common meaning," means you look to the ordinary dictionary definition (that's the "normal and common meaning"). For adjacent, according to Webster's online, that's 

a"1: n not distant : NEARBYthe city and adjacent suburbs
b2 : having a common endpoint or border adjacent lotsadjacent sides of a triangle
c3: immediately preceding or following"
 


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