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Final Draft

Traditional Neighborhood District



Article 8B        Traditional Neighborhood District (TND)


8B-1     PURPOSE

The purpose of the Traditional Neighborhood District Zone is to promote, on newly annexed parcels within the City's designated growth boundary and city in-fill parcels, previously zoned for growth, a compact mixed-use design, traditional neighborhood pattern of development based on the small town fabric of the eastern panhandle of West Virginia, the surrounding region, and the older neighborhoods of Charles Town. This development includes a hierarchy of interconnected streets and blocks, pedestrian friendly walkable streets, a variety of housing types and lot sizes, mixed-use village and neighborhood centers including commercial and office uses, and a well connected and distributed passive and active open space network of linear parks, neighborhood parks, preserved land and civic places, thus helping to preserve the surrounding agricultural, environmental and recreational resources of the region.



A.  Applicable Parcels

The Traditional Neighborhood District (TND) is created as a special mixed-use, traditional neighborhood development district to be applied within those designated locations in the City and within newly annexed areas where it is desired to promote a compact, mixed-use development pattern where increased building density is appropriate, such as:

1.      Where land is newly annexed into the City of Charles Town, or;

2.      Where existing land located within the City limits, upon petition upon petition, is the subject of a petition in accordance with Section 17.5 of this Ordinance, for reclassification of a parcel or group of contiguous parcels and,

3.      Where a parcel or group of contiguous parcels is twenty-five (25) acres or larger in size.


B.   Procedural Rules

All land zoned TND shall follow the development process in Article 20, except for previously annexed parcels that already have development approval (i.e. schematic plan approval), unless prior agreements or proffers state otherwise.


B.C.     Maximum Density

The overall maximum density permitted in a  parcel, or group of contiguous parcels assembled as one development in the Traditional Neighborhood District shall be not more than three (3) residential dwelling units per gross acre, less open space requirements as set forth in this ordinance., prior to the dedication of of pPublic rights-of-way and lands dedicated for the purpose of future schools and other public/civic uses may be included in the gross acreage calculations.


C.D.     Density Bonus for Open Space Dedications

The maximum density permitted may be increased by Planning Commission approval if the applicant dedicates open space at a level greater than the minimum requirement of 15% of the gross area.  If 20% gross area is dedicated to open space, the maximum may be increased to 4 units per acre.  If 25% gross area is dedicated to open space, the maximum density may be increased to 5 units per acre.  A sliding scale calculation shall be used when open space dedications are greater than the minimum 15% but are between 15-20%, and 21-25%.


DE.      Authority

1.   The City Council shall have sole authority to designate the zone as follows:

a.      At the time of annexation for land being annexed into the City.

b.      For land to be redeveloped, in accordance with the procedure for zoning text amendments as required by Article 17. 

2.   The City Council shall have the authority to place additional conditions upon parcels so designatedannexed subsequent to the date of this ordinance in accordance with Section 17.3 of this ordinance as long as the conditions are not inconsistent with applicable law.

3.   The Rrequirements of this district shall be in addition to any items officially agreed to between the applicant and the City in the proffer and annexation process. 

4.   All development applications within the TND shall be in accordance with Article 20, Development Process.



8B-3     Definitions

Refer to Article 2 for other definitions.  Definitions in this section refer specifically to the TND zone and not to other zones as stated in this OrdinanceFor purposes of this article, the following terms shall have the meanings hereafter set forth.


Active Adult Housing:  Designated development area within the TND where the covenants of the designated area require at least one of the owner(s) or tenant(s) of the individual residential units to be of an age of 55 years or older, in accordance with Federal laws.


Apartment Building:  A multifamily building or group of buildings containing at least 5 or more units in each building.


Assisted Living Facility:  A building or group of buildings that provide housing and services for individuals requiring assistance with one or more activities of daily living.


Buffer: An open space upon which no building construction may occur that separates the traditional neighborhood development from a major highway, all weather stream or is located adjacent to a recognized growth boundary.  Buffers may have landscaping, walkways, signs, fences and benches or other appurtenances as approved by the Planning Commission during site plan review.


Commuter Rail/Train Station: A railroad passenger station, or other major public transit point to provide a centralized high-speed transit service stop for residents.


Condominium:   A multi-family or multi-tenant building where the units are not contained within individual lots but may have multiple owners of the individual units.A building containing portions of the real estate designated for separate ownership, with the remainder of the real estate designated for common ownership solely by the owners of those portions.


Density:  The amount of development permitted on a lot or parcel, expressed in residential districts as the number of dwelling units per square foot or acre, and in commercial areas or districts as the gross floor area of buildings per acre.


Density, Net Residential:  The total number of residential units in a development divided by the net land area (in acres) of the parcel or development excluding open space areas.


Density, Gross:  The total number of residential units in a development divided by the total land area (in acres) of the parcel(s).


FAR (Floor Area Ratio):  A number designating the maximum square footage of commercial use allowed on a particular lot.  FAR is calculated by taking the gross floor area in feet of a building/buildings on a lot and dividing it by the lot area in feet, minus any floodplain.  The floor area ratio multiplied by the lot area produces the maximum amount of floor area that may be constructed on such lot. 


GSF (gross square feet):  Total square footage included in a concept plan, schematic plan or site plan or total floor space in non-residential building or complex.


Large Parcel:  A parcel or group of contiguous parcels being developed as one community and containing at least 500 acres and a village center.


Land Area, Gross:  The total area of a tract, parcel, or development.


Live/Work Units:  A dwelling unit containing both living space and office or business type uses, or a dwelling unit located either above or behind a commercial use and occupied by the same entity.


Lot Coverage:  The percentage of a lot area occupied by the ground area or footprints of all portions of principal and accessory buildings, structures, and impermeable surfaces on such a lot, including, but not limited to, buildings, garages, decks, sheds, carports, patios, porches, chimneys, paved driveways, parking lots, etc.


Neighborhood:  A residential area whose locus is a neighborhood center.


Neighborhood Center:  A centercenter that may containcontaining one or more of the following: neighborhood-serving commercial uses, civic uses, and/or housing centering on a public green or square.


Neighborhood Park:  A park containing active and/or passive activities (such as ball fields, nature trails, woodlands, tot lots, etc) and containing 2 to 20 acres.


Public Green: pParkland designed to act as the center of a neighborhood that is owned by the City or homeowners’ assocationshall be transferred upon satisfactory completion and accepted by the City and shall be made available to the public.  It must be accessible from public streets.


Public Square:  A civic space surrounded on at least three sides by public streets and serving as the center of a neighborhood or village center.


Quadruplex:  One of four (4) dwelling/building units, located on abutting walls without openings (i.e. “back to back units”) and with each unit having a separate lot, with minimum dimensions as required by district regulations.  These “back to back” units will normally have no rear yard and only one side yard (or two fronts and no side yards if on a corner lot).


Single-Family Attached Dwelling:  A duplex, semi-detached, or townhouse unit as defined in the Zoning Ordinance.


Specialty Shops:  Commercial uses such as dress shops, antique shops, coffee shops, bookstores, florists, etc.


Village Center:  A mixed-use center comprised of residential, commercial, and/or civic related uses serving the overall development and centered on a public square or open space.



8B-4     USES

Parcels shall be developed with multiple neighborhoods and neighborhood centers as defined.  On large parcels (500 acres or larger), a village center shall also be established, unless waived otherwise specified by the City Council at the time of annexation or rezoning, upon recommendation from the Planning Commission.  The village center shall provide a defined center for the location of retail, office and civic uses for a group of neighborhoods.  Refer to the Development Design Standards Section 8B-5 for Distribution of Uses and Use Locations.

A.  Neighborhoods

1.   Permitted Uses:

a.      Single-Family Detached Dwelling

b.      Single-Family Attached Dwelling

c.      Neighborhood Parks, Playgrounds

d.      Home Occupations, as defined in Article 2.


2.   Special Exception Uses:

a.  Small Multi-Family Dwelling Units (not more than 15 units per building)


B.     Neighborhood Centers

1.  Permitted Uses:

a.      All Uses allowed in Neighborhoods

b.      Live-Work Units, either single family or townhouse type units

c.      Multifamily Dwelling Units

d.      Small Group Homes as defined in Article 2, and small nursing homes or assisted living facilities for not more than 20 residents.

e.      Churches or other places of worship (less than 10,000 GSF)

f.       Bed and Breakfast Facilities

g.      Small “corner” food markets, delicatessens or convenience stores (less than 5,000 GSF), no drive-throughs

h.      Coffee Shops (less than 5,000 GSF)

i.       Libraries

j.       Public or Private Swimming Pools

k.      Licensed Child-Care Facilities (not more than 5,000 GSF)

l.       Public or Private Schools/Educational Facilities

m.    Community/Recreation Center or Meeting Hall

n.      Laundry/Dry Cleaning drop off (no dry cleaning facilities on the premises)

o.      Barber Shops, Hair Styling Salons/Beauty Shops

p.      Bus/Transit Stops


2.   Special Exception Uses

a.      Churches or other places of worship greater than 10,000 sq. ft.

b.      Cemeteries

c.      Civic-Community Centers

d.      Nursery Schools within a church or school building

e.      Video Rental Stores

f.       Any other function use which the Board of Zoning Appeals finds functionally similar equivalent to any principally permitted use or special exception listed in this article and which does not violate the spirit and intent of this ordinance. 

g.      Licensed child-care facilities greater than 5,000 sq. ft.


C.    Village Centers

1.  Permitted Uses:

a.      All permitted and special exception uses allowed in neighborhoods and in neighborhood centers, unless modified herein.

b.      Multi-Family Units

c.      Live/Work Units, town house type only

d.      Residential uses above retail/commercial such as multifamily located over a grocery store or shop.

e.      Civic, Cultural and Non-residential Education Uses

f.       Retail /Commercial Uses as listed below (not to exceed 15,000 gross square feet unless otherwise specified below):

1.      Drug Stores and Pharmacies

2.      Barber and Beauty Shops

3.      Fine Art Galleries

4.      Florists

5.      Shoe Repair Shops

6.      Hardware Stores

7.      Clothing Stores

8.      Specialty Shops

9.      Candy Shops

10.   Dairy Products Stores

11.   Sundries and Discount Retail Stores

12.   Furniture Stores

13.   Small Craft-type Enterprises (not more than 5,000 GSF)

14.   Professional and Business Offices

15.   Medical Offices, for not more than 5 physicians

16.   Sporting Goods or Hobby Shops (not more than 5,000 GSF)

17.   Stationery and Book Stores

18.   Pet Shops

19.   Veterinary Clinic

20.   Antique Shops

g.      Grocery Stores (not more than 40,000 GSF)

h.      Government Offices and Services

i.       Licensed Child-care Facilities and Nursery Schools

j.       Restaurants

k.      Banks

l.       Bus/Transit Stops


2.   Special Exception Uses

a.      All Retail/Commercial uses of more than 15,000 GSF unless otherwise specified.

b.      Large Grocery / Food Stores greater than 40,000 GSF.

c.      Group Homes larger than permitted in Article 2, and Assisted Living Facilities, and Nursing homes with greater than 20 residents.

d.      Funeral Homes

e.      Laundromats

f.       Tourist / Information Centers

g.      Private Clubs and Recreational Buildings

h.      Hotels, Inns

i.       Museums and Art Centers

j.       Alcoholic Beverage Package Stores

k.      Taverns and Cocktail Lounges

l.       Gas Stations, including those with convenience stores and/or small delis/fast food restaurants

m.    Skating Rinks (indoor and outdoor)

n.      Department Stores

o.      Theaters (movie and theatrical)

p.      Hospitals, sanitariums or charitable institutions for human care and treatment

q.      Medical Clinics, including medical laboratories, as part of a medical office or clinic only, and medical offices for more than 5 physicians.

r.       Professional and Commercial Offices

s.      Commuter Rail/Train Station as defined in Section 8B-3.

t.       Any other function use which the Board of Zoning Appeals finds functionally similar equivalent to any principally permitted use or special exception listed in this article and which does not violate the spirit and intent of this ordinance.


D.   Use Limitations and Performance Standards

All permitted uses and special exception uses shall be subject to Section 5.10, Performance Standards.


E.   Accessory Structures and Other Uses

Accessory structures are permitted in association with permitted structures and uses or as approved special exceptions, as specified in Section 2.2 and Section 5.8, with the following exceptions:

1.      Accessory structures used as rear yard detached vehicular garages for Single Family Detached and Attached Dwellings, not exceeding 600 square feet, may be located no closer than five (5) feet to the side and/or rear yard property lines.

2.      Attached garages are not considered accessory structures.  However, rear-loading attached garages may be located no closer than five (5) feet from the rear property line.  No encroachment into the side setback will be permitted for rear-loading garages.  All side-loading and front-loading garages must meet regular setbacks in accordance with Section 8B-6A, Area and Bulk Regulations.    




The Traditional Neighborhood District shall provide a mixed-use, compact design, traditional neighborhood pattern of development that includes a hierarchy of interconnected streets and blocks, pedestrian friendly walkable streets, a variety of housing types and lot sizes, mixed-use village and neighborhood centers, and a connected-distributed, passive and active open space network of linear parks, neighborhood parks and civic places.  Unless specified otherwise herein, all design standards shall conform to the Design Standards in Section 906 of the Charles Town Codified Ordinance.

A.  Mixed-Use Requirements

1.      At least 40%, but not more than 70% of the residential dwelling units shall be single family detached units, with the remainder being a mix of housing types including attached dwellings, small multifamily, live/work units and /or town houses and/or large multifamily dwellings.  Residential housing types should not be segregated from each other.

2.      The development shall contain central passive and active open space components (such as parks, tot lots, etc.). 

3.      Civic, commercial and retail uses shall also be required and shall be located at neighborhood and village centers.

4.1.4.A minimum of 30 square feet per dwelling unit of civic, commercial and neighborhood serving/retail uses shall be provided.  Reductions or waivers of this requirement may be permitted under certain circumstances and are described further below:

a.Any reduction request shall be presented by the applicant during the concept plan phase as required in Article 20 of the Zoning Ordinance.  At no time shall a reduction or waiver be granted after the concept plan has been submitted and approved by the Planning Commission, unless a concept plan amendment is submitted and approved by the Planning Commission.  However, any proffered agreement for retail/commercial shall supercede this requirement and cannot be reduced or waived unless a proffer amendment is submitted and approved by City Council upon recommendation by the Planning Commission.

b.Upon Planning Commission approval, an applicant may reduce or omit the retail/commercial requirement for developments under 50 acres, upon a demonstration that retail/commercial development would not be feasible or appropriate for the development and with a mandatory payment to the City to offset the loss of anticipated tax revenue of such commercial/retail development. 

c.Where there are exceptional mitigating circumstances for developments between 51 acres and 99 acres (such as a flood plain that effectively reduces the developable area to under 50 acres), an applicant may request that the Planning Commission waive the retail/commercial requirement.  The applicant shall submit proof of those mitigating circumstances as part of its request and shall provide a mandatory payment to offset the reduction. 

d.For those developments 100 acres and above, a reduction of the retail/commercial requirement may be approved by the Planning Commission if the applicant justifies, through independent market analysis or where extraordinary mitigating circumstances exist, that 30 square feet per dwelling unit is not feasible.  The applicant shall provide a mandatory payment to offset the reduction.  There shall be no complete waiver or reduction to zero for the retail/commercial requirement for developments 100 acres and over.

e.A development shall not be split into “sub-developments” or sections consisting of smaller acreage to circumvent the retail/commercial requirements.


B.   General Development Design Principles

1.      The development shall contain a series of compact design, mixed-use, pedestrian friendly neighborhoods with a defined center generally not exceeding a 1/4 mile radius from its center to edge (5 to 10 minute walk).

2.      A well distributed and varied open space system of large and small, passive and active open space components shall be connected internally on the site and to a regional open space component if available or planned.

3.      Major civic and public use buildings shall be located in or adjacent to the neighborhood center or adjacent to the civic green, square or park in the village center.  Public space components and civic buildings shall terminate vistas whenever possible.  Public and civic use buildings may front on open spaces such as parks or greens. When not fronting on parks, squares, or greens, or other open space, these uses shall be placed closer to the streetscape to avoid larger setbacks traditionally seen in suburban settings.

4.      A mix of residences, shops, workplaces-commercial, civic-public buildings, institutional, civic, passive/active open space, retail and commercial uses shall be provided, unless specifically waived by these regulations.

5.      Residential lot types of various lot widths and sizes for single-family housing units should be mixed within the same block.  The exact mix and location shall be dependent upon the specific site and the internal compatibility with adjacent lots and public right-of-ways.

6.      The street and block network shall be based on the historic rectilinear interconnecting patterns of Charles Town and other towns in the region.

7.      Higher density commercial, retail and residential uses shall be located in the village center.

8.      The development of gated communities is not permitted, unless limited access into a designated area (i.e. an active adult community) of the TND is approved by the Planning Commission as part of the Schematic Plan process.


C.  Specific Development Principles

1.      Neighborhoods and Neighborhood Centers

a.      Each neighborhood shall have a recognizable, defined neighborhood center that includes an open space component such as a neighborhood park, public green or public square.

b.      Civic structures and facilities, institutional (schools) and community buildings, and places of worship shall be located so as to front on neighborhood center open space and be located on prominent sites.

c.      Neighborhood serving retail retail establishments (i.e. corner stores) shall be accessible by foot for neighborhoods.

d.      Neighborhoods shall be compact in design with an approximate distance from its center to edge of about 1/4 mile or a five (5) minute walk.

e.      Each neighborhood center should shall have a designated transit/bus stop location to provide a transit stop for future potential transit service to downtown Charles Town and any future commuter rail stations.  The location of any planned transit stops shall be shown on the Schematic Plan submittal.


2.      Village Center

a.      On large developments (over 500 acres gross land area) a village center shall be required.

b.      The village center shall be located to function as a sub-activity center of the City of Charles Town and shall be a defined center of the site and located accordingly.

c.      A mix of retail, office commercial, entertainment, restaurants, sidewalk cafes, multifamily uses and public and civic-government facilities (such as post offices, city services, etc), shall be concentrated in the village center.

d.      The village center shall be organized around a public open space such as a green or square and shall be an area of increased intensity of uses and density.

e.      Wide sidewalks (See Street Criteria) shall be located at the ground floor level of buildings with active storefronts fronting on the streets surrounding the central green.  Buildings shall be built to the sidewalk edge at the front of the property, and should have zero side setbacks to connect buildings in the village center, clearly defining the public realm of the street.

f.       A commuter rail/train station may be a planned component of a Village Center with Special Exception approval.


D.    Street Design Principles

1.                Unless modified herein, street design shall follow design standards and requirements as outlined in the City of Charles Town, Codified Ordinances, Article 906-Design Specifications.

2.                The street and block pattern shall be primarily rectilinear (orthogonal) but may be square, elongated, or irregular, especially when responding to topographical conditions.

3.                Blocks shall be no more than 700 feet in any one direction.

4.                Streets in a TND Development shall be designed to accommodate the needs of all modes of transportation-pedestrian, bicycle and vehicular.

5.                Traffic-calming measures shall be incorporated into street designs.  Such design may include pedestrian crosswalk bump-outs, landscaping, textured crosswalks, etc.and the like.

6.                The street network shall establish a hierarchy of street types that serves the development through an interconnected street pattern including alleys providing multiple routes, diffusing automobile traffic and shortening walking distances.

7.                All streets shall terminate at other streets.  Exceptions are loop streets that surround a natural feature, a neighborhood square or a village green, or streets at the development boundary that shall be designed to connect to contiguous parcels of different ownership.

8.                All streets shall have:

(a)                                            Street trees of not less than 2 1/2 inch caliper installed and aligned on both sides of the street at no more than 65' – 0” intervals.

(b)                                           The types of street trees to be used shall be reviewed and approved by the City Engineer until such time that a list of acceptable species is adopted by the Planning Commission.

(c)                                            Street trees shall be located outside of all utility easements unless otherwise approved by the City Engineer.

(d)                                           Sidewalks at least five (5) feet wide installed on both sides of the street.  Sidewalks along the Village Center Retail Street shall be 18-22 feet wide (see Street Criteria).

(e)                                            Streets with one side that borders a major open space component such as a park, green or natural feature may follow the park design standards for that side of the street.

9.                Alleys should serve as much as possible all residential neighborhoods where the average lot size is less than 10,000 sq. ft.  Wherever possible alleys shall serve residential parking, including garages and commercial and retail establishments.


10.             STREET TYPES:  It is recommended that Tthe following hierarchy of street typologies should be provided.  Typical street sections are shown in Figures 1-6 at the end of Article 8B.

a.   Primary and Secondary Streets:

·        Boulevard Street  (Figure1)

Designed to be park like in character and to encourage pedestrian usage.  The boulevard has a green space as part of the street, engaging surrounding open spaces and neighborhood streets.  The roadways are one-way (2 lanes each direction) with on-street parking, sidewalks and street trees on the building sides of the street.  The center “park” is highlighted with a double row of large growing deciduous trees appropriate for streets.


·        Neighborhood Connector Street  (Figure 2)

Designed to be park like in character and to encourage pedestrian usage similar to the boulevard.  The neighborhood connector street has a narrower green median as part of the street.  The roadways are one-way (1 lane each direction) with on street parking on the building sides of the street.  The center “park” is highlighted with a single row of large growing deciduous trees appropriate for streets.  Each side of the street shall have a single row of large growing deciduous street trees in a planting strip and a 5'-0” wide sidewalk.


·        Neighborhood/Village Center Street  (Figure 3)

The neighborhood/village center street establishes a grid network of streets in the neighborhood center and village center areas of the site.  This street is comparable to the residential yield street but differs primarily on section street dimensions.  A single row of large growing deciduous street trees in a planting strip with minimum 5'-0” wide sidewalks line each side of the street.  The street has a two-way drive aisle with on street parking on both sides.


·        Village Center Retail Street  (Figure 4)

The village center retail street is the main street designed to accommodate commerce shops, restaurants, cafes, etc.  The sidewalk shall be wider (18-22 ft.) to allow for outdoor seating.  The two-way street shall have two travel lanes with two lanes of parking.  Street trees shall be in tree pits surrounded by sidewalk paving to the back of the curb.


b.   Tertiary Streets:

·        Residential Neighborhood Street  (Figure 5)

The residential neighborhood streets, like the typical Residential Yield Street helps to establish the fine-grained network of each neighborhood.  These streets are slightly wider, curb to curb, to allow one lane of street parking but maintain two lanes of travel and the same general right-of-way dimensions.  Front yard dimensions are reduced to create a more intimate street section favoring the pedestrian.  Continuous 5’-0” wide sidewalks and street trees line each side of the street.

·        Residential Yield Street  (Figure 6)

The typical residential yield street establishes the fine-grained network of each neighborhood.  These streets are designed to be slightly narrower to ensure slow vehicular movement and to favor the pedestrian.  Continuous 5’-0” wide sidewalks and street trees line each side of the street.  Use of yield streets is encouraged throughout each neighborhood. (Note:  unless serving housing that has more than 2 parking spaces per DU, some parking shall be provided on one side of the street.  It need not be continuous.)



c.  ALLEYS  (Figure 7)

Alleys shall be large enough to allow one lane of traffic including garbage trucks and service vehicles.  Alleys shall have wide enough shoulders to allow placement of underground utilities and allow placement of rubbish cans for pick up without impeding traffic.  Alley rights-of-way shall be at least 20 feet wide with at least a 10 foot paved surface.  Where single-family detached dwellings front on a public green, an alley may serve as a primary access and in lieu of public street frontage, provided the alley is designed to accommodate emergency and service vehicles.

 Alleys may be designated as one way.  In all cases, access to a driveway and/or garage from an alley shall meet turning radii specifications for residential access as established by AASHTO.


d.                PARKING LOTS

All parking is required in accordance with Article 15, Division 1 in the Zoning Ordinance unless modified in Section 8B-9.  Parking lots in neighborhood and village centers are to be so designed as to allow pedestrian access to the entire village or neighborhood center. No village center activity or business should be located more than 1000 feet from a parking lot, and no neighborhood center activity or business shall be more than 750 feet from a parking lot. Parking lots should be broken into smaller areas with landscaping, including landscape islands, in order to minimize visual impact. 


E.   Utilities

1.      All permanent utilities shall be located underground within or adjacent to street or alley rights-of-ways.

2.      All above ground utility boxes or other facilities shall be clustered and located away from street view or visually screened from street view with appropriate screening, as noted in the designated street section and street criteria for each street.


F.   Open Space and Landscape Principles

In addition to the design criteria below, open space in the TND shall be provided in accordance with Section 8B-7.

1.                                                                  In a TND development, landscaping is predominately provided in the form of street trees, and landscaped open space such as squares, parks, plazas and natural areas.

2.                                                                  Open space should include natural landscape features such as existing woodlands and streams, as well as identified historic resources.  Efforts should be made to preserve and incorporate these features into the open space network.

3.                                                                  Open space shall be planned as a collection of green spaces connected by pedestrian trails, street sidewalks, and walkable green spaces.  They shall be linked via sidewalks and walking paths within the development area, and linked via trails or other walkways to an existing or proposed regional system.

4.                                                                  When possible, active recreation fields shall be located adjacent to proposed schools, neighborhood or village centers or natural open spaces.

5.                                                                  A variety of open spaces including passive parks, linear parks, and urban plazas shall be provided.

6.                                                                  Open space is distributed throughout each neighborhood and is accessible to all residents via sidewalks, walking paths or other pedestrian pathways.  All residents shall be within an approximate 5-minute walk (approximately 1/4 mile) to a neighborhood park or component of the distributed open space system.

7.                                                                  The basic hierarchy includes formal types such as squares, plazas, and greens principally located at village and neighborhood centers as well as at vistas and/or major intersections, less formal parks including playing fields and playgrounds accessible from neighborhoods and schools and the least formal greenbelts and preserves, consisting mainly of passive uses with walking paths and rest areas.

8.                                                                  Generally, open space shall not be fenced except for major open space areas with facilities requiring fencing such as tennis courts or pools.


G. Civic Components

1.   Major public spaces, parks and community buildings are to be distributed throughout the development, principally in neighborhood and village centers.

2.   Public/community buildings shall be planned in coordination with civic open spaces and prominently sited, usually terminating a vista or axis and serving as landmarks.

3.   In order to tie together the civic components and to identify the primary areas of the development, street furniture, including identification symbols (such as flag poles, entrance markers, statuary etc.) street lighting, street signage, bollards and street furniture (benches, trash cans, play equipment) shall be developed to tie together the community and identify individual neighborhoods.  For example, major boulevards and the village center could reflect the ambiance of downtown Charles Town through use of similar streetlights and signage.


A.  Lot Area, Lot Width and Yard Requirements

Refer to the notes below and to Tables 8B-6A(I) and 8B-6A(II) for Lot Area, Lot Width and Yard Requirements.

1.   For projections into yards see Section 16.4 Projections into Yards.  For accessory structures and garages, see Section 2.2: Definitions, Section5.8: Accessory Structures-Yard Requirements, and Section 8B-4E: Accessory Structures and Other Uses.

2.   In the Village Center, Community Buildings located adjacent to civic or open space shall have a minimum front yard setback of 20 feet.

3.   No portion of any structure shall extend beyond any property line or into any right-of-way.


B.                                                                           Lot Coverage

No requirement for non-residential uses within the Village Center.  70% maximum for all other uses in the TND zone.

C.  Floor Area Ratio

No requirement.

D.  Height Regulations

Height shall be measured as follows:  From the median ground elevation of the structure to the highest point of the roof.  Pitched roofs or parapets shall not exceed 1/3 of the structure height.  See Section 16.5 for exceptions to this requirement.

1.      Neighborhoods

      Principal Permitted Use Structures in the Neighborhoods shall not exceed two (2) stories, except that town houses or small apartment buildings may be three (3) stories.  No structure in neighborhoods shall exceed 40 feet in height.

2.  Neighborhood Centers

Principal Permitted Use Structures in the Neighborhood Centers shall not exceed three (3) stories or 40 feet in height.

3.  Village Centers

Principal Permitted Use Structures in the Village Centers shall not exceed four (4) stories or 60 feet in height.

4.   In-fill /Redevelopment Sites

On in-fill or redevelopment parcel sites, no Principal Permitted Use Structures shall exceed the height limit of the Central Business District (CBD – 60’-0”).




TABLE 8B-6A I:  Lot And Yard Requirements-Neighborhood and Neighborhood Center








Lot Size/Area




 Lot Width


Min. Setbacks


Front                      Rear      Side






Single-Family Detached Dwelling


Min. 5000 sq. ft.



50 feet


10 feet from property line










Single-Family Attached/Duplex/TH/Quadruplex



(Max 8 units in a row for THs)


Min. 2000 sq. ft




20 feet


10 feet from property line







*0’ on interior lots w/ units sharing a common (party) wall


**0’ for quadruplex sharing two common (party) walls




Min. 2500 sq. ft


Min. 25’


10 feet from property line








*0’ (zero) if abutting commercial


SPECIAL EXCEPTION USES:  As Determined by Board of Zoning Appeals



TABLE 8B-6A II: Lot And Yard Requirements-Village Center








Lot Size/Area




 Lot Width


          Minimum Setbacks


Front                      Rear      Side





Single-Family Detached Dwelling


Min. 4000 sq. ft.



40 feet


5 feet from property line











Single-Family Attached/Duplex/TH/Quadruplex Dwellings


(Max 8 units in a row for THs)


Min. 1600 sq. ft




16 feet


5 feet from property line







*0’ on interior lots w/ units sharing a common (party) wall


**0’ for quadruplex sharing two common (party) walls




Min. 2500 sq. ft


25 feet


None required***









*0’ (zero) for office and commercial abutting same uses


***See 8B-6A-2


SPECIAL EXCEPTION USES:  As Determined by Board of Zoning Appeals





A.  The required amount of open space for the overall Traditional Neighborhood Development shall be calculated as follows:

1.                                                                                      Not less than 15% of the gross land area of the entire development shall be provided as open space.  Refer to Article 8B-2C for density bonus incentives.

2.                                                                                      At least ten percent (10%) of the total open space shall be active open space.

3.                                                                                      All parks, playgrounds, boulevard medians and circles, squares, landscape or stream buffers, preserves and similar active or passive open space may be counted toward open space.

4.                                                                                      100% of any innovative storm drainage facility that serves a dual purpose such as wetlands, rain gardens, or playing fields approved by the Planning Commission at schematic or site plan review may be counted toward open space.  This does not include storm water retention ponds or other major drainage facilities.

5.                                                                                      All required open space shall be either dedicated to the City, the Board of Education for school facilities, a Homeowner's Association with easements dedicated to the City to allow public access, a land trust organization, or another entity as approved by the Planning Commission. 

6.                                                                                      All required open space shall be available to the public.  This does not limit the authority of the owning entity to make reasonable rules with regards to access and use of the open space, nor does it require facilities such as schools, city office buildings etc. to be open beyond normal hours to the public.

7.                                                                                      Where the traditional neighborhood development abuts a growth boundary as approved by the Mayor and Council by resolution, a green buffer shall be provided at the boundary if the area outside the boundary is undeveloped (i.e. farmland) and not zoned for growth.  Such buffer shall include existing woodlands, stream valleys and shall be at least 100 feet in depth. 

8.                                                                                      All weather streams within the development shall be protected by buffers of at least 50 feet on either side of the stream banks.

9.                                                                                      Open space landscaped 50-foot buffers shall be provided along major highways (i.e. US Route 340, 340 Bypass, WV Route 9 or WV Route 51). 

10.                                                                                   Buffers located at the growth boundary and in stream valleys shall be covered by conservation easements, which may be dedicated to the applicable Homeowners’ Association, a land trust, or other organization as approved by the City.





A.     Landscaping shall be provided in accordance with the landscaping standards in Section 5.12 of this Ordinance, except as noted in the Street Design Standards and parking requirements and/or as may be modified by the Planning Commission upon recommendation from Staff.

B.     All areas for collection of refuse and outdoor storage shall be adequately landscaped and screened from view from streets and residential uses.



A.  All parking lot design standards shall be in accordance with Article 15, Division I, Off Street Parking and Loading, unless modified herein.

1.      On-street parking shall be parallel parking with spaces to be at least 22 ft long and 8 ft. wide.

2.      At least 60% of access to residential parking for single-family lots, attached units and townhouse units, including garages shall be provided by alleys. 

3.      All single-family dwellings, all attached dwelling units, townhouses and live-work units shall require two (2) parking spaces per dwelling unit.  Up to two (2) parking spaces may be provided by a garage, depending on the size of the garage. 

4.      The use of rear-loading detached or attached garages for residential garage parking is encouraged. 

5.      On residential streets with front-entry driveways, front-loading garages shall be recessed from the front plane of the house a minimum of 10 feet.  This is not required for side-loading garages.  Front and side loading garages may be used for not more than 40% of the total number of garages proposed in the development.  For active-adult housing community areas within the TND, this 40% requirement will not apply.

6.      On-street parking is allowed and shall be provided on all local streets.  On-street parking may be provided on one side of the street and need not be continuous.

7.      Parking lots shall be designed to allow access to the entire village or neighborhood center from the parking lot. No village center or neighborhood center activity or business shall be located more than 1000 feet from a parking lot.

8.      All above-grade parking structures shall be designed in a manner that is integrated with nearby building architecture to minimize visual impact.

9.      For multifamily uses, required parking shall not be located on the street. Where parking lots are required to accommodate individual unit and visitor parking, those lots shall be located to the rear or side of buildings where possible.  Parking lots should be located to minimize impacts of parking on primary and secondary streets. 

10.   For single-family attached, duplex, and multifamily uses, visitor parking shall be provided at the rate of one space for every three dwelling units.  Visitor parking may be provided as on-street parking or as off-street parking located to the rear or side of buildings. 

11.   Commercial/retail/office parking lots shall be located where possible behind building facades and landscaped/screened as required. 

12.   Parking lots and parking garages should not be adjacent to street intersections, civic use lots, or squares and shall not occupy lots that terminate a vista.

13.   Shared parking in commercial areas (village and neighborhood centers) is encouraged where it can be demonstrated that the requirements can be met for all the various uses and where peak parking requirements for those uses occur at different times (i.e. an office building sharing parking with a church).  Shared parking agreements may be required when necessary as determined by the City.

14.   The Planning Commission may waive certain parking requirements where adequate parking is provided on street and/or on individual lots. Shared parking may be used to reduce required parking where it can be shown that various uses will not conflict with each other.  (Example, a church and a library could share parking, or an office complex and a restaurant that serves meals primarily in the evenings and on weekends).  The Planning Commission may allow shared parking where the applicant shows that shared parking is feasible and that adequate safeguards are provided to avoid any conflicts.


B.   Parking Lot Landscaping and Screening

1.  All parking lot landscaping, buffering, and screening shall be in accordance with Section 5.12 and Article 15, Division 1 of the Zoning Ordinance unless modified herein.

2.      The property owner is responsible for the maintenance, repair, and replacement of all required landscaping and screening materials.

3.      All plant material shall be maintained in a healthy growing condition, shall be replaced when necessary, and shall be kept free of refuse and debris.

4.      All parking lots shall be broken into smaller areas either visually or physically with landscaped islands or other landscaping techniques in order to minimize the visual impact of the parking areas.

5.      Required interior landscaping for parking lots shall be evenly distributed and shall include canopy and understory trees and shrubs.  One (1) tree per ten (10) spaces is required, and three (3) shrubs per (10) ten spaces is required.

6.      Loading and outdoor storage areas shall be screened with opaque walls/barrier or stockade fence at least 6 feet in height with landscaping to soften the visual appearance of the walls.



A.  Permitted signage shall meet the requirements of Article 15, Division II, Signs of this ordinance.

B.   Size, location, etc. of signage shall be determined as follows:  

1.      Neighborhood signage shall conform to signage as allowed in the RS, RD, and RM Zones depending upon the specific use.

2.      Signage in Neighborhood and Village Centers shall conform to signage requirements for the CBD (Central Business District), except that no Historic Landmarks Commission approval shall be required.

C.    The applicant shall submit a Master Signage Plan in accordance with the Sign requirements in Article 15, Division II.  Any signage that does not conform with zoning requirements must have Variance approval by the Board of Zoning Appeals in accordance with Article 18.

D.    All signage shall be shown at the site plan stage to identify all signage and locations within the submitted section of the development.  All signage shall conform to zoning requirements or an approved Master Signage Plan, which may include application and approval of sign permits.