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PUD Overlay?


The City Attorney recently discussed with me an OVERLAY PUD zoning for the Comp Land Use Plan. I told him I'm not familar with a City who has used or uses a PUD as an overlay zone. My idea and the way our zoning code is, a PUD is not designated on the comp plan and is handled through amending the comp plan. Has anyone ever heard of a PUD overlay? The idea is basically making a PUD in any given area a planned future use along with the existing planned use whether that be R-1, R-2, C-G, etc... Any thoughts, ideas, pros, cons, etc...

The areas of discussion for the overlay, are areas that are mostly older single family residential with some a few apartments in the area. The reasoning behind the overlay is people are slowly wanting to open low traffic businesses in the area. (It has started out with spot zoning, staff noted that, but P&Z still made the rec to approve) Now as staff I am trying to figure out how to mitigate the current problem and future ones, which will arise...

Thanks for any input, its a appreciated! :)

Repo Man

In some of our comp plan amendments we have identified areas that could have either a specific zoning or could be a PDD. When we get to the zoning map revisions, I think we will use a PUD overlay. Our intent is to allow single parcels to be used for specific business types and at the same time allow for more flexibility if someone came in and consolidated some parecels and wanted to do something creative.

In your situation, you could have a scenerio where the underlying zoning is strictly residential and the overlaying PUD would allow for small busineeses only when they are part of an overall PUD. You could limit the % of the space that can be used for business within the pud. This ensures that you city has more control over the size, placement, and type of business.


Cyburbian Emeritus
We do it

But I do not recommend it. We will be changing our zoning code in the next few years.

Our code basically allows anything in any district following public hearing, pud overlay zoning, and a conditional use grant.

Admittedly, lot of our problems are a result of poor administration in the past - the regulations / flexibilities of each district were not individually codified, and we are occassionally unable to determine if certain amendments (ex: an addition to a duplex) would meet the original setbacks offsets and f.a.r. requirements of the specific overlay district. With a little forethought you can overcome that problem.

In your case it sounds like an overlay is a proper method, but not as a planned unit development. I perceive planned unit development overlays to be used primarily for large tract development where desing flexibility is warranted.


Dear Leader
Staff member
Larimer County, Colorado, uses a PUD overlay on top of existing zoning districts. The underlying zoning dictates permitted uses, while the PUD dictates development standards. The PUD overlay is handy for cluster development; and development that will probably be annexed into a nearby municipality, so it will comply with the incorporated area's zoning bulk and design requirements when it's annexed in.

(Larimer County's development philosophy is that it is not an urban services provider or a competitor to incorporated municipalities in the area, and urban scale or style development is permitted only in areas where such development will likely be annexed into an incorporated municipality.)

The Larimer County land use code is online, with a link in the Cyburbia Resource Directory.


We had overlay districts in our comp plan, it went along the "sensitive" high traffic roads to dictact different setbacks and other development standards. We left the PUDs to the current zoning atlas, if anyone wanted to try and change one it was much easier to ammend it in our city's mind.

Lee Nellis

The City of Idaho Falls, ID has a mapped Planned Transition zoning district that would be worth looking at, given your description of your situation. I don't know if it is on-line, but the planning staff there can get you the materials. I think it is best to confine PUDs, if you use them at all, to their original purpose, which was to provide for truly large scale mixed use development. For a changing neighborhood, I think you have to start way before the regulations, with a sound public involvement process to establish the desirable future and how that future might be achieved with a miniumm of pain. Then amend the plan, and only then write some performance-based regulations that govern the transition.