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Thread: Zoning Map - do streets have a designation?

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    Cyburbian SW MI Planner's avatar
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    Zoning Map - do streets have a designation?

    Our current zoning map is in need of update as there was no quality control when it was prepared and then was hardly ever updated. It's on my "to-do" list.

    Question - does your zoning map include the streets in a zoning district, or are they left out?

    What would be the pros/cons either way?

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    Cyburbian dvdneal's avatar
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    I've had maps going either way. My current map includes streets because the streets are actually roadway easements.

    Things to consider:
    If your code has buffers related to adjacent zones, the street breaks the adjacent zone rule.
    You can leave the zoning out of the street so you can clearly see where streets are, but have something written into your code that says zoning extends to the centerline.
    Do you have any unzoned properties? I have a bombing range that isn't zoned. Don't want to confuse not zoned with not being shown.
    I don't pretend to understand Brannigan's Law. I merely enforce it.

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    Cyburbian michaelskis's avatar
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    Have the zoning district go to the centerline of the street. That way the uses within the zoning districts can be applied to areas outside parcel boundaries. These could include food trucks, hotdog carts, street vendors and similar uses.
    If you want different results in your life, you need to do different things than you have done in the past. Change is that simple.

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    Cyburbian
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    Public streets or publicly dedicated streets are not zoned for us. Private streets would be.

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    Mod Gedunker's avatar
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    If it's in my planning jurisdiction it is zoned. Rights-of-way, both public, private, and rail, are zoned, parks are zoned, institutions.
    Nothing is permanent in zoning, so having a district present gives some assurance of what could go there, regardless of what the realtors say.
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    moderator in moderation Suburb Repairman's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by michaelskis View post
    Have the zoning district go to the centerline of the street. That way the uses within the zoning districts can be applied to areas outside parcel boundaries. These could include food trucks, hotdog carts, street vendors and similar uses.
    We are transitioning to this for similar reasons. Also, we are getting a significant number of replats, etc. that result in reconfiguration of rights-of-way (usually additional ROW dedication). Finally, it simplifies the zoning map for cartographic legibility.

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    All the codes I've worked with specify that when a street separates two different zoning districts the district boundaries meet at ROW centerlines. My current city's code has this:
    Boundaries. In the event that uncertainties exist with respect to the intended boundaries of the various districts as shown on the zoning map, the following rules shall apply:
    (A) The district boundaries are the center lines of streets or alleys, unless otherwise indicated; and where the designation of a boundary line on the zoning map coincides with the location of a street or alley, the center lines of such street or alley shall be construed to be the boundary line of such district.
    (B) Where the district boundaries do not coincide with the location of streets or alleys, but do coincide with lot lines, such lot lines shall be construed to be the boundary of such district.
    (C) Where the district boundaries do not coincide with the location of streets, alleys or lot lines, the district boundaries shall be determined by the use of the scale shown on the zoning map.
    (D) When a lot held in one ownership on the effective date of these regulations is divided by a district boundary line, the entire lot shall be construed to be within the district in which the majority of the lot is located.
    I'm surprised that a zoning code wouldn't have this kind of interpretive section. In any case, it's easier to have the boundaries meet in the streets so you have compelete map coverage and there's no real effect until and unless the ROW is vacated.

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    Cyburbian
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    Zone them if you can. I don't know about your jurisdiction, but mine will sometimes sell off right-of-ways. These could be planned road connections that turned out to be unneeded, or perhaps just a sliver of the ROW that's too wide. You don't want to sell off unzoned land, and you probably don't want the burden of a rezoning before land can be sold.

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    Super Moderator luckless pedestrian's avatar
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    zoning is for the use of private lands so typically rights of ways are left out - private ways usually or should have an easement for access so the designation would not apply
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    Cyburbian Otis's avatar
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    Zone them. here the majority of the ROWs are dedications, not transfers in fee simple. So if we vacate a street or a portion of a street, it goes to the adjacent property owner. You will want that to automatically have a zoning designation.

    Here we zone all land. Publicly owned land is included. We have federal land zoned open space, state owned land zoned park, county owned land zoned residential (which allows schools), special district owned land zoned commercial (which allows fire stations), and city owned land zoned with all kinds of designations. The only thing we can't exercise zoning jurisdiction over is tribal land, and even all of that has a zone on it since we zoned it before the tribe bought it.

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    Cyburbian Streck's avatar
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    Our streets are indicated in our Zoning Map, but they are not tied to Zoning type designation or street type designation.

    We do not indicate parking on our Zoning map.

    We do indicate when railroads are permitted by Zone (Industrial Zones).

    Railroads are not shown on our Zoning map.

    We do not have street cars or "light rail."

    Our town has a population of about 30,000 now.

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    Cyburbian michaelskis's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by SW MI Planner View post
    Our current zoning map is in need of update as there was no quality control when it was prepared and then was hardly ever updated. It's on my "to-do" list.

    Question - does your zoning map include the streets in a zoning district, or are they left out?

    What would be the pros/cons either way?
    Yes. Zoning lines here go to centerline of the street. I could be wrong, but I think that there is a state law that requires it down here.

    In terms of cons, I can not think of any. For pro, if there are uses that are not tied to specific properties, such as food trucks or mobile venders, they can still be regulated in terms of use and similar conditions based on the district location where they intend to operate. We also include "Government Services" as a use permitted within all districts and recognize public transportation as a government service.
    If you want different results in your life, you need to do different things than you have done in the past. Change is that simple.

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    Cyburbian MD Planner's avatar
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    We can't have unzoned property so like others have said, typically to the centerline or other natural boundary i.e. railroad track, center of waterbody etc.
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    Cyburbian Masswich's avatar
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    I recommend zoning them to the center lines. We have some situations where the lack of zoning has been a problem for streets, such as when they are relocated or an anticipated street is built in a different location than anticipated.
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  15. #15
    Cyburbian RandomPlanner's avatar
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    We are having a similar conundrum when updating our Comp Plan and looking at character areas. In the past each character area ended at a major street, which makes sense. But now we're finding that several corridors have become neighborhoods in and of themselves.

    Ideally, I'd like boundaries (both zoning and character areas) to be along the lanes but we don't have them everywhere in the City so I can't make that a blanket statement.
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