Zoning Ordinance Rewrite
- The Zoning Ordinance is the primary implementation tool for the 2019 Comprehensive Plan.
- It contains an added level of specificity that is based on the community’s vision as expressed in the goals, policies and actions of the 2019 Comprehensive Plan.
- The rewrite project, which kicked off in September 2019, is expected to be completed by the end of 2022.
- The Zoning Ordinance Committee is serving as a sounding board throughout the Zoning Ordinance Rewrite process.
- Input from the Board of Supervisors, advisory bodies, various departments and community and professional groups is also being factored into the final product.
- A number of Zoning Ordinance Amendments have been rolled into the rewrite project.
- WSP USA Inc. has been awarded a contract to provide consulting services for the Zoning Ordinance Rewrite.
|Project Milestones (last revised July 27, 2021)||Planned Date|
|Approval of Project Plan, consultant selection||September 2019|
|Project kickoff||October 2019|
|Research, analysis, Staff Technical Advisory Committee meetings||October 2019 -February 2020|
|Round One Input: Planning Commission, ZOAG, Advisory and Community Groups||January - July 2020|
|Integrate Round One Input, STAC Meetings, Ordinance Development||July - November 2020|
|Round Two Input: Planning Commission, Zoning Ordinance Committee, Advisory and
Community Groups; Draft Resolution of Intent to Amend (ROIA)
|October 2020 - April 2021|
|Present Proposed ROIA to Board of Supervisors for Review & Adoption||Fall 2021|
|Refine Draft Ordinance Text per Referral Review & Round Two Input||Early 2022|
|Round Three Input: 90-day referral review (open to all parties)||Early to Mid-2022|
|Second draft ZO Rewrite to Planning Commission for review and recommendations||Mid-2022|
|PC draft ZO Rewrite to Board of Supervisors for review and adoption||Mid-2022 to Late 2022|
Best Management Practices Research
As specified in the project plan, Kendig Keast Collaborative has completed two Best Practices Assessments to inform the Zoning Ordnance Rewrite (ZOR) project:
- Planned Unit Developments – Best Practices Assessment (PDF)
- Zoning Incentives – Best Practices Assessment (PDF)
The project also calls for a code audit, which evaluates the county’s code structure, districts, development standards, use regulations, and code administration process. The code audit, completed by WSP, includes recommended updates to the Zoning Ordinance that improve usability, modernize regulations, and implement the Loudoun County 2019 General Plan.
- Code Audit – Text Analysis (PDF)
- Code Audit – District Assessment and Recommendations (PDF)
- Transportation and Land Use Committee Report and Presentation, December 2020 (PDF)
Other Related Documents
- September 19, 2019: Board of Supervisors Business Meeting - Project Plan and Staff Presentation
- September 19, 2019: Summary of Board Action (PDF)
- Additional documents are located on Loudoun Online Land Application System (LOLA). Search application number ZOAM-2020-0001.
Project Update: November 2021
At its November 16, 2021 meeting, the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors adopted a Resolution of Intent to Amend (ROIA) for the Revised 1993 Loudoun County Zoning Ordinance. The ROIA is a formal resolution adopted by the BOS publicly announcing the intent to amend the entire Zoning Ordinance; adoption of a ROIA is a necessary step in revising the ordinance. View the meeting here.
The Board’s action marks the official referral of the Zoning Ordinance Rewrite to the Planning Commission for review and recommendations.
As part of the rewrite process to date, the county’s Department of Planning and Zoning and the Zoning Ordinance Committee have discussed possible new and revised land uses, definitions, and performance standards; improvements to parking regulations; renaming of zoning districts; and changes to process. Potential ordinance changes are intended to implement the Loudoun County 2019 Comprehensive Plan and respond to input from the public, community groups, advisory bodies, and subject matter experts.
Progress to date includes the potential for:
- Adding land uses to implement the Loudoun County 2019 Comprehensive Plan, reflect the current marketplace, and address gaps identified by staff, citizens, and Zoning Ordinance Committee members.
- Combining or renaming land uses for consistency, clarity, and efficiency.
- Modifying the land use legislative application process to provide opportunities for input from the public and the Board of Supervisors earlier in the process.
- Revisions to current land uses to be consistent with new “place types” in the Loudoun County 2019 Comprehensive Plan.
- Modifying parking ratios based on the different planning policy areas throughout the county.
- Introducing parking ratio maximums for specific land uses. This concept is new for Loudoun County and is designed to provide parking at an appropriate scale within the county.
- Developing parking standards for bicycles, car-sharing, electric vehicles and motorcycle/scooters.
- Adding parking standards that recognize the needs of small, pedestrian-scale, rural communities.
- Areas still to be addressed in the rewrite process include attainable housing, lot and building standards, signs, landscaping, and zoning processes and procedures.
As part of this project, a code audit was completed to evaluate the county’s approach to zoning; the audit outlines alternatives and recommends changes to structure, organization, and content.
Next steps in the process include a general public “open house” for review and comment; a 90-day public review period for the first draft; review and recommendations by the Planning Commission; and, finally, adoption by the Board of Supervisors in late 2022.
- View all updates on the Zoning Ordinance Rewrite.
- Sign up to receive updates on this project in Notify Me, Blogs category.
- For questions about the Zoning Ordinance Rewrite project, email Planning and Zoning or call 703-777-0246.