Feature-Based Density

Description: Feature-based density is a zoning technique where the permissible density is calculated based on a set of factors contained in the ordinance, as opposed to a uniform standard being applied to all of the land in the zoning district. Feature-based density can strengthen the ability of the planning board to ensure that the zoning ordinance and individual subdivision layouts achieve many goals of the local community. These include:

  • Conservation of forest, agricultural land, scenic resources, wildlife habitat.
  • Concentration of development activity close to services.
  • Provision of a range of building lot sizes and prices throughout the community.
  • Layout of subdivisions in a manner that is conducive to neighborhood dynamics.
  • Walkability, linkage between areas.

This chapter of the Innovative Land Use Techniques Handbook provides an overview of feature-based zoning and presents model ordinance language.

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New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services, NH Association of Regional Planning Commissions, NH Office of Energy and Planning and the NH Local Government Center
Date: 2008

Format: PDF Document

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