What is Planned Development?

Chapter 21.16A of the Zoning Ordinance establishes the Planned Development (PD) Zoning District Overlay. An overlay district provides further regulation of land use and development within the primary zone categories. Overlay zone regulations apply in addition to the base or primary zone regulations (R1 PD, C2 PD, and M PD, are all examples of zones with a PD overlay.


The purpose of a Planned Development is to provide the Planning Commission with the opportunity to allow for innovation and flexibility in the design of residential, commercial, and industrial projects than would otherwise be afforded through strict adherence to the prescribed development standards. By providing for innovation and flexibility, it is envisioned that projects will be designed on a case-by-case basis in order to ensure that each project uniquely fits it's site and it's setting.

Modification of Development Standards

Modification of certain development standards for new projects can only be allowed if there would be greater public benefit provided than would otherwise be achieved. The development standards that may be modified through approval of a Planned Development are:

  • Building height limitations.
  • The descriptive, non-numerical grading standards of the R-1 Zoning District regulations for properties located with the R-1 and Hillside Development Districts. Such modification(s) can only be approved if it can be demonstrated that such modification(s) will still preserve the integrity of the existing topography and the basic landform of the site and will meet the intent of preservation of natural resources and/or conserve/provide for open space.
  • Minimum lot sizes, minimum lot widths and depths that are required by the base zoning district if such modification is necessary in order to cluster lots to preserve natural resources.
  • Minimum setback requirements.
  • Provide flexibility to modify specific public improvements such as width and location of parkways and sidewalks when such limitations do not adversely affect public safety.
  • The types and intensities of allowable land uses can be limited through a Planned Development.

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1. What is Planned Development?
2. What is a Development Plan?