Proposed ordinance to expand use of in-law units

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The ordinance seeks to address the community's need for a variety of housing options and the ability to age in place

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – The public is invited to attend one of three identical informational meetings to learn about a proposed City ordinance to expand the use of accessory dwelling units (ADUs), or in-law units in Colorado Springs by allowing this use in single-family residential zoned areas.

All meeting times and formats are identical. Open house: 5:30 – 7 p.m. with a short presentation at 6 p.m.

Southeast Colorado Springs
Weds, Feb. 20
Deerfield Hills Community Center
4290 Deerfield Hills Road, 80916

North Colorado Springs
Monday, Feb. 25
Prairie Hills Elementary School, gymnasium
8025 Telegraph Drive, 80920

Central/west Colorado Springs
Tuesday, Feb. 26
City Auditorium
221 East Kiowa Street, 80903

Meeting attendees will have an opportunity to learn about this emerging type of housing adopted by many cities and how it’s designed to address the need for increased housing options in Colorado Springs.

In an effort to mitigate the impact of a tight housing market and increasing rental rates and further advance efforts to be an age-friendly community, Colorado Springs officials are exploring an often overlooked form of housing as a potential solution: the in-law unit.

“Because the need to provide housing to aging parents, dependent or disabled adult children or other family members should not be limited those within the allowed zone districts, the City is proposing to allow this type of housing throughout Colorado Springs,” said Hannah Van Nimwegen, senior planner for the City of Colorado Springs. “Updating the city code to extend this type of housing to single-family residential areas will respond to the growing need expressed by our community to provide a greater variety of housing options at different price points and help facilitate and reflect what is already taking place in Colorado Springs.”

Accessory Dwelling Units (ADU) are secondary apartments on a residential lot or within the main home. ADUs are often referred to as ancillary apartments, in-law suites or cottages, or guest houses. These residential units are smaller than the main home, and can come in a number of forms, such as above a detached garage, converted attic or basement, separate smaller unit on the property or attached to the home.

An ADU must include a sleeping area, sanitary facilities and kitchen. Property owners who rent or provide living accommodations, but do not meet the above criteria for an ADU will not be affected by the proposed ordinance. Additionally, pre-existing legal ADUs in multi-family and commercial zoned districts will not be affected. The proposed ordinance would not override HOA covenants and HOAs may opt to prohibit ADUs.

The City has adopted best practices from other municipalities to develop the proposed ordinance. For more information about the proposed ordinance and what it entails see the attached fact sheet and visit

Event dates

Location Deerfield Hills Community Center (map)
4290 Deerfield Hills Rd
Colorado Springs, CO 80916
Date/Time Wednesday, February 20, 2019 - 5:30pm to 7:00pm
Location Prairie Hills Elementary School (map)
8025 Telegraph Dr.
Colorado Springs, CO 80920
Date/Time Monday, February 25, 2019 - 5:30pm to 7:00pm
Location City Auditorium (map)
221 East Kiowa Street
Colorado Springs, CO 80903
Date/Time Tuesday, February 26, 2019 - 5:30pm to 7:00pm