1Overlay Zones

Description

  1. Additional provisions on top of existing zoning.
  2. Administrative Tools
    • Can be linked to incentives.
    • Can include Traditional Neighborhood Design (TND) strategies.
    • Can include scenic and aesthetic resources.

Purpose

Leave underlying zoning as is but provide additional provisions usually to protect a natural resource or promote a particular kind of development.

Issues

  1. Provisions must be specific.
  2. Environmental review (SEQRA in NY State) may be required.

Capacity Requirements:

  1. Additional administrative burdens.
  2. If design guidelines are involved, need to develop guidelines and create design review process.
  3. Likely to involve participation and cooperation among multiple land-owners.

Advantages

  1. Broadly applicable, and can incorporate a wide variety of tools to promote goals: environmental strategies, innovative zoning such as floating zones, special permits, incentive zoning, cluster, special site plan or subdivision regs.
  2. Especially useful for promoting incremental change or completion of existing centers.
  3. Can overlap municipal boundaries.
  4. Could be used at the scale of the larger landscape to protect some resources.

2Floating Zones

Description

A set of use-specific zoning regulations that is not mapped until an applicant comes forward with a proposal for a site that meets the criteria set out in the regulations.

Purpose

  1. To facilitate development of a use that the community wants to encourage.
  2. Add flexibility to enable zoning to accommodate new land uses.

Issues

  1. Specific requirements especially in regard to size needed to establish where it can “land.”
  2. Usually more intensive, so requirements need to protect potential adjacent property owners.
  3. Applicants need to invest a lot to demonstrate impacts and accommodations.

Capacity Requirements:

  1. Additional administrative burdens.
  2. If design guidelines are involved, need to develop guidelines and create design review process.

Advantages

  1. Flexibility, both for community and the market response.
  2. Signals community’s desire to encourage/accommodate particular kinds of land uses.

3Conservation Subdivision/ Cluster Development

Description

  1. Zoning that provides for a subdivision layout that conserves natural and scenic qualities of open lands.
  2. Overall development yield remains unchanged.

Purpose

To promote concentration of development on one part of the site to preserve open space and reduce infrastructure costs.

Issues

  1. Specific guidelines needed to establish applicability.
  2. Capacity Requirements
    • Determination of density yield can be time consuming and costly.

Advantages

A lot of flexibility: applicability by zone, by area, by site for particular features, by certain state purposes, by development or land use type, can be mandatory or optional.

4Incentive Zoning

Description

Community benefits or cash are provided by the developer in return for increased development over base densities granted by municipality.

Purpose

Leverage community control over land-use to advance physical, cultural and social objectives in accordance with the comprehensive plan.

Issues

  1. The community must accept higher densities and understand impacts.
  2. Capacity Requirement:
    • Technical studies may be needed to calibrate rough proportionality of benefits to impacts.

Advantages

  1. Successfully used to generate affordable housing.
  2. Incentives can also be leveraged to create other community benefits including streetscape improvements or open space amenities.
  3. Less opposition from developers because it is voluntary.
  4. Can be used to address district-wide needs.