Comprehensive Planning, Housing, and Environment

Zoning Bylaws

Zoning Bylaw Examples

SRPEDD has experience writing, amending, and otherwise assisting communities with zoning work, including: 

Open Space Residential Design

A bylaw designed to protect natural resources and open space.  It includes elements of conservation subdivision regulations and cluster development bylaws and is used to regulate new subdivisions of land in a manner that maximizes the protection of natural resources (wetlands, forests, agriculture lands, and open space) while providing for new construction and adequately compensating landowners. 

Inclusionary or Incentive Zoning

Effective tools that can be used to require or incentivize the production of adequate affordable housing during the normal course of real estate development.  

Transit-oriented Development (TOD)

An approach to community development that includes a mixture of high-density housing, office, retail and/or other amenities integrated into a walkable neighborhood and located within a half-mile of quality public transportation. 

Chapter 40R Smart Growth Overlay District

A state-enabled, locally-adopted district that allows higher density residential development in areas around transit stations, in city and town centers and in other highly suitable places. Upon review and approval from the state, communities that adopt 40R are eligible for financial incentives.

Accessory Dwelling Units (ADU'S)

Also known as accessory apartments, guest apartments, in-law apartments, family apartments or secondary units, these bylaws help provide supplementary housing that can be integrated into existing single-family neighborhoods to provide a typically lower-priced housing alternative with little or no negative impact on the character of the neighborhood. 

Transfer of Development Rights (TDR)

A zoning mechanism that uses real estate market forces to permanently protect land. The main idea is that a community can encourage development where it wants by allowing property-owners to trade the ability to build on their land. Under TDR, open space is permanently protected (through a conservation restriction) for water supply, agriculture, habitat, recreation, or other purposes via the transfer of some or all of the development that would otherwise have occurred in these sensitive places to more suitable locationssuch as city and town centers or vacant and underutilized property.