TITLE 45
Towns and cities

CHAPTER 45-24
Zoning Ordinances

SECTION 45-24-47


§ 45-24-47 Special provisions – Land development projects.

(a) A zoning ordinance may provide for land development projects which are projects in which one or more lots, tracts, or parcels of land are to be developed or redeveloped as a coordinated site for a complex of uses, units, or structures, including, but not limited to, planned development and/or cluster development for residential, commercial, institutional, industrial, recreational, open space, and/or mixed uses as may be provided for in the zoning ordinance.

(b) A zoning ordinance adopted pursuant to this chapter which permits or requires the creation of land development projects in one or more zoning districts shall require that any land development project is referred to the city or town planning board or commission for approval, in accordance with the procedures established by chapter 23 of this title, including those for appeal and judicial review, and with any ordinances or regulations adopted pursuant to the procedures, whether or not the land development project constitutes a "subdivision", as defined in chapter 23 of this title. No land development project shall be initiated until a plan of the project has been submitted to the planning board or commission and approval has been granted by the planning board or commission. In reviewing, hearing, and deciding upon a land development project, the city or town planning board or commission may be empowered to allow zoning incentives within the project; provided, that standards for the adjustments are described in the zoning ordinance, and may be empowered to apply any special conditions and stipulations to the approval that may, in the opinion of the planning board or commission, be required to maintain harmony with neighboring uses and promote the objectives and purposes of the comprehensive plan and zoning ordinance.

(c) In regulating land development projects, an ordinance adopted pursuant to this chapter may include, but is not limited to, regulations governing the following:

(1) A minimum area or site size for a land development project;

(2) Uses to be permitted within the development;

(3) Ratios of residential to nonresidential uses where applicable;

(4) Maximum density per lot and maximum density for the entire development, with provisions for adjustment of applicable lot density and dimensional standards where open space is to be permanently set aside for public or common use, and/or where the physical characteristics, location, or size of the site require an adjustment, and/or where the location, size, and type of housing, commercial, industrial, or other use require an adjustment, and/or where housing for low and moderate income families is to be provided, or where other amenities not ordinarily required are provided, as stipulated in the zoning ordinance. Provision may be made for adjustment of applicable lot density and dimensional standards for payment or donation of other land or facilities in lieu of an on-site provision of an amenity that would, if provided on-site, enable an adjustment;

(5) Roads, driveways, utilities, parking, and other facilities; regulations may distinguish between those facilities intended to remain in private ownership or to be dedicated to the public; and

(6) Buffer areas, landscaping, screening, and shading.

(d)(1) A zoning ordinance requiring open land in a cluster development or other land development project for public or common use, shall provide that such open land either: (i) be conveyed to the city or town and accepted by it for park, open space, agricultural, or other specified use or uses, or (ii) be conveyed to a nonprofit organization, the principal purpose of which is the conservation of open space or resource protection, or (iii) be conveyed to a corporation or trust owned or to be owned by the owners of lots or units within the development, or owners of shares within a cooperative development. If such a corporation or trust is used, ownership shall pass with conveyances of the lots or units, or (iv) remain in private ownership if the use is limited to agriculture, habitat or forestry, and the city or town has set forth in its community comprehensive plan and zoning ordinance that private ownership is necessary for the preservation and management of the agricultural, habitat or forest resources.

(2) In any case where the land is not conveyed to the city or town:

(i) A restriction, in perpetuity, enforceable by the city or town or by any owner of property in the cluster or other land development project in which the land is located shall be recorded providing that the land is kept in the authorized condition(s) and not built upon or developed for accessory uses such as parking or roadway; and

(ii) The developmental rights and other conservation easements on the land may be held, in perpetuity, by a nonprofit organization, the principal purpose of which is the conservation of open space or resource protection.

(3) All open space land provided by a cluster development or other land development project shall be subject to a community approved management plan that will specify the permitted uses for the open space.

History of Section.
(P.L. 1991, ch. 307, § 1; P.L. 1992, ch. 385, § 2; P.L. 2002, ch. 184, § 1; P.L. 2004, ch. 286, § 8; P.L. 2004, ch. 324, § 8.)