2023 ARC Standards Revision for Resident Comments

Mega wildfires, record-breaking heat, the ubiquitous smart phone, preoccupation with social media, gun violence, remote work, environmental activism, an increased demand for energy­ efficient technologies, doorbell cameras, privacy, and dark skies—the world has seen an explosion in these matters in the last decade.

85% of Americans now own a Smartphone, making this device the go-to source for any task requiring the internet. This statistic was the driving force behind the total reformatting of the Standards. Messages must be purposeful and economical. Based on suggestions in the Strategic Insights Report in 202land also from residents responding to the current Customer Experience Survey, items in the document are no longer listed in paragraph form. They are now separate headings under the specific item to which they apply. And they are listed in alphabetical order. This is now a more user-friendly document that is better adapted to the various digital devices currently in use.

Recent fires in the Wildland Urban Interface have prompted new, stricter building codes and the use of noncombustible building materials. Landscaping requirements now address fire hazards and mitigation efforts, as well as xeric plants and water-saving matters.

Environmental considerations emphasize dark sky lighting. Energy efficiencies overwhelmingly support solar installations. Remote work has led to increased use of outdoor spaces. These Revisions include the preceding as new requirements or recommendations.

Changes incorporate aspects of requests from the last three years and tend to be less restrictive, as noted in the fence limitations.

The Strategic Insights Report of 2021 offered several recommendations, the foremost being that of updating the standards, and specifically, to “make standards more explicit and clearly defined”. These Revisions explicitly lay out the requirements for various improvements. This unambiguous treatment provides a higher level of transparency and should lead to better collaboration between the ARC and the community.

This same report also called for a review of the projects not requiring ARC approval. This committee evaluated nearly 1000 applications, as well as numerous covenant violations, to determine what exterior changes could be done without ARC approval. This section now specifies a large number of projects that can be completed, as long as specific requirements are met, without having to go through the submittal process. The intended consequence is that residents will now be encouraged to submit projects that are more complex and require more oversight, regarding the ARC as a resource rather than a law-making body.

Throughout these Revisions the ARC has been careful to consider that a requirement is one of aesthetics, and not one of how to perform work.

To help readers locate specific information, an index has been added, and a more comprehensive list of resources has been incorporated. The Strategic Insights Report noted that residents did not know where to look for plant lists, hardscaping materials, and so on. These will now appear in the Resources section of the Revised Standards.

The last time the ARC Standards were updated, 2018, our community was a different place. By focusing on understanding what has been important to our residents and supporting them where it has most mattered, the ARC is able to connect with the fundamental values that define our community. These Revisions reflect those changes and those fundamental values

To review and make comments on the 2023 ARC Standards please follow the link below to our form.


Volunteer in Genesee