One cause is that the front door of houses on some corner lots faces one street while the driveway connects to the other street. The house placement increases public surveillance of the site and simultaneously reduces privacy. Furthermore, the reduced backyard area easily allows views, sounds, and smells to extend back and forth to the neighbor’s yard. Lack of Privacy Privacy on the corner lot is reduced because of the increased public surveillance from the two adjoining streets and from the close proximity of the house to the back and side property lines. On some corner lots, views from the streets not only extend into the front yard, but also directly into the backyard (Figure 13—3). Thus, all the attention that is commonly afforded the front yard in a typical property must be doubled on the corner lot. Limited area also means there is less space for screen planting. Special Site Conditions
Double Front Yard A unique quality of the corner lot is that it faces two intersecting streets and therefore has two “front yards.” The corner lot may have as much as two to three times the length of adjoining street and curb as a typical lot (Figure 13—1). This occurs for several reasons. aft-esTf – sfteet
Limited Backyard Space While the majority of a corner lot’s area is located in the public realm, the private domain or backyard is simultaneously reduced to a relatively small area (Figure 13—2). However, a small portion of the lots in most subdivisions are located at the corners of intersecting streets. Figure 13-2
The majority of a corner lot’s area is located in the public realm with little space available for the backyard. In this situation, the house and yard are seen from almost three different sides of the property. Figure 13-1
The street frontage is two to three times greater on a corner lot than on a typical lot. It may force activities such as lawn recreation or outdoor sitting that are normally reserved for the backyard to take place in the more public area of the site. Majority of Site in the "Public Realm" Directly associated with the double front yards of a corner lot is the fact that the majority of a site area is located in the “public realm” (Figure 13—2). The result is that the neighbor’s backyard is directly seen from windows and spaces located at the back of the house. Corner lots are typically rather square-like in area with two sides that face the public right-of-way. Front Entry Confusion The double frontage sometimes creates puzzlement about where the front of the house is and where the appropriate location is for entering the house from the street or driveway. Even the tax or charge for public services such as sidewalk installation, lighting, and sewer or water line replacement is frequently more expensive for a corner lot because of the double frontage. This lot configuration creates a number of distinct site conditions that require special attention. Which one is the front door?