Zoning Reform

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Why: The Mayor and City Council began the process of reviewing the Atlanta Zoning Ordinance by performing a diagnostic of the existing zoning code provisions in combination with professional City staff and a consultant team. The diagnostic, performed over one year, resulted in the Atlanta Zoning Ordinance Assessment that made a series of recommendations for future changes to the Zoning Ordinance, including amendments to the regulations.

What: The Diagnostic categorized the recommendations into 1) those that could be completed in a relatively short period of time as “Quick Fixes,” or “Medium Fixes;” and 2) those that would require a comprehensive overhaul of the current Zoning Ordinance and would likely require a period of two to four years to complete.

The proposed recommendations seek to clarify and improve certain provisions of the Atlanta Zoning Ordinance and Subdivision Ordinance and provide consistency with the Atlanta City Design project; as well as update consistency with state and federal law, and advance the public health, safety and welfare of citizens. The recommendations topics were broken down into two Phases: Phase I - “Quick Fixes” and Phase II - “Medium Fixes.”

 Phase I Topics  Phase II Topics
  • Accessory structure heights
  • Accessory structure size definition
  • Accessory uses in R District
  • Bicycle parking standards
  • Deletion of unused zoning districts
  • Independent driveways requirements
  • Multi-Family zoning, single-family minimum lot sizes
  • MRC District building placement
  • Master plan provisions
  • Minimum building height non-conformity
  • Replats of non-conforming lots
  • Special Use Permit transfers
  • Sidewalk standards
  • Storefront streets curb cuts
  • Storage pods on residential property
  • Traditional Neighborhood Development (TND) street standards
  • Accessory Dwellings
  • Definitions Update
  • Industrial Districts Uses
  • Loading Requirements
  • MRC (Mixed-Residential Comm) Residential Density Increase
  • Missing Middle Zoning District
  • Parking (on-street, shared, old buildings)
  • Neighborhood Design Standards 
  • Telecommunications Updates
  • Transitional Height Plane Updates 
  • Quality of Life Districts


Where are we now? 

Phase I - Quick Fix proposed amendments were adopted and approved in May of 2018.

Phase II: The City has undergone a community vetting process of Phase II “Medium Fixes.” To date, the Office of Zoning & Development has conducted 16 community meetings throughout each quadrant of the City. In addition, each NPU has reviewed and provided a vote. On December 13, 2018, the Zoning Review Board heard and recommended approval of the proposed Medium Fix solutions. The legislation will proceed to Committee and Council in early Summer 2019.

Zoning Ordinance Rewrite: A Request for Proposals (RFP) - FC-10449 - has been posted on December 14, 2018 to solicit bids/proposals on a complete overhaul of our Zoning Ordinance. 

For questions or comments:  
Sushmita Arjyal
Urban Planner I
sarjyal@AtlantaGa.gov

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