Charlotte Debating Changes to Density Allowance in PED Overlay

The Metropolitan development, at Kings & Charlottetown, is in Charlotte’s PED Overlay District

Last Tuesday the Charlotte Mecklenburg Planning Department hosted a workshop to discuss standards for density in the Pedestrian Overlay Zoning District (PED).  The primary purpose of the meeting was for staff to gain input on a proposed text amendment to Section 10.812 of the Zoning Ordinance.Most of the 18 members of the public that attended were residents of the Dilworth Neighborhood, who would like to see residential development in the PED limited to the density of the underlying zoning district, rather than the unlimited density intended when the ordinance was originally adopted.

When the original PED ordinance passed in 2000, it was promoted as a trade-off.  Developers would have to meet enhanced design standards and would incur greater infrastructure costs to create a more pedestrian-friendly streetscape and public realm. In exchange they would be afforded higher densities whereby they could recoup some of those upfront expenditures.  The PED ordinance does effectively restrict density by limiting building heights and imposing setbacks.  Unfortunately, the language never explicitly stated that there was no “maximum residential density” within the PED overlay even though it has been granted over time as standard practice.

The proposed text amendment seeks to clarify the language and has the full support of Planning Department staff.

Representatives of the Dilworth Neighborhood raised concerns at the last meeting and are likely to participate in the next meeting, scheduled for Thursday, June 27th, from 6:00 – 7:30 pm in Room 280 of the Government Center.  If you have an interest as it relates to current and future development within the PED Overlay, you are strongly urged to attend.

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