The Village of Mineola board of trustees has paved the way for restrictions on the size and shape of homeowners' front driveways.

The panel last week unanimously passed a law prohibiting paved driveways from taking up more than 25 percent of a front yard. The new rule means circular driveways can no longer be installed.

Residents who already have more than 25 percent of their front yards paved, or those with existing circular driveways, do not have to remove them. Driveways on the side or at the back of houses are exempt because they cannot be easily seen from the street.

"I think the law's a great idea," village resident Harriet Beckman said. "When you put a lot of driveway in, it looks like a cityscape." She has a single-car driveway at the back of her home leading to her garage. "I'm not upset about this one. I've seen the large driveways, and they look ugly."

Village Clerk Joseph Scalero said an increasing number of homeowners have sought to expand paved driveways, pave over grassy areas at the front of their homes or install circular driveways.

Scalero said the law was passed as a preventive measure.

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"This is going forward," he said. "There is no specific house or houses [that prompted the action] but there were a growing number of inquiries, and we realized the code didn't address it specifically. We wanted to get out in front of it."

Scalero said that while residential driveways were put in to accommodate one or two cars, it has become commonplace for children living in their parents' homes to also want space in the driveway for their cars. He said the front lawns of village houses were not meant to be covered in concrete.

"We're a village of homes and yards," Scalero said. "This is suburbia."