The proposed vacation rental off the alley at 1131 Darrow Ave. (Google Maps)

Evanston city staff will seek direction from aldermen tonight about whether licensing an accessory dwelling unit for vacation rental use should require City Council approval.

A city ordinance now specifies that staff can approve a vacation rental licensee for a property owner’s primary residence, while the use of non-owner-occupied properties as vacation rentals requires City Council approval.

The issue came up because David Becker, who owns a two-flat at 1131 Darrow Ave. and lives in the first-floor unit, is seeking approval to rent out a coach house at the rear of the property as a vacation rental.

Becker says the ADU has a bedroom, living room, kitchen, bath and loft space and that he would rent it when he’s not using it as a studio or hosting family and friends.

A city staff memo says the property has passed life-safety inspection and has no known zoning or property standards violations, that property owners within 250 feet of the property have been notified of the vacation rental proposal and that staff has not received any objections to it.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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