PBZA denies resident’s request
By Amy Lavalley Post-Tribune correspondent December 21, 2012 5:56PM
Updated: January 23, 2013 6:05AM
VALPARAISO — The Porter Board of Zoning Appeals has denied a Liberty Township resident’s request to turn her former residence into a bed and breakfast to serve nearby Porter Regional Hospital.
The board denied the request 5-0 at its Wednesday meeting.
“They didn’t think it was a good fit for the area,” county planner Kristy Marasco said.
Diane Wallace had filed for a use variance for her former home, at 75 E. U.S. 6, since the property just west of hospital is zoned commercial/medium intensity.
She had hoped it could serve families with relatives staying at the hospital, professionals who come in for job interviews at the facility, and even relatives visiting students at Valparaiso University.
The four-bedroom home with a three-car garage and full basement served as Wallace’s primary residence until she moved out in January of last year because of the hospital construction, and purchased a home in the nearby St. Andre subdivision.
Wallace has said she thought about turning the home into a child-care facility but determined that wasn’t cost-effective.
The property, along with the adjoining property, was rezoned from residential to commercial, according to documents filed with the county’s planning department. Compliance with commercial zoning, Wallace wrote, would require demolition of the structure, constituting a hardship since she has a mortgage on the property.
It would have been the first B&B in Liberty Township. Wallace could not be reached for further comment.