What is the Unified Development Ordinance (UDO)?

The Unified Development Ordinance (UDO) is the regulatory tool meant to guide future development so it results in the types of community and places defined by the Charlotte Future 2040 Comprehensive Plan policies. The UDO is also instrumental in implementing other City policies such as the Transportation Action Plan, the Urban Street Design Guidelines, the Strategic Energy Action Plan, and the Urban Forestry Master Plan.

Regulations and standards from eight (8) different development ordinances will be combined into a single comprehensive document. The UDO will consolidate and update regulations and standards currently found in the City’s Zoning Ordinance, Subdivision Ordinance, Tree Ordinance, Chapter 19 (Streets and Sidewalks), Floodplain Regulations, Erosion Control Regulations, Stormwater Regulations, and Driveway/Access Standards.

What has been accomplished?

A few short-term initiatives have been completed ahead of the full UDO. These include revised Transit Oriented Development (TOD) zoning districts and the subsequent rezoning of over 1,500 parcels along the Blue Line light rail corridor to one of the new TOD zoning districts (TOD Alignment Rezoning No. 2019-102). The revised TOD zoning districts were approved and adopted in April 2019 and most recently amended in June 2020.

New TOD Zoning Districts & Regulations

In addition, new Sign Regulations (Chapter 13) were approved in October 2019, and are now being refined through Rezoning #2020-104. Further, a small but significant text amendment was approved to the Tree Ordinance, focused on allowing better integration of trees into urban sites.

A Tree Canopy Action Plan (TCAP) is now being prepared by staff and community stakeholders. This plan will lay the foundation for a more comprehensive assessment and update of Charlotte’s tree-related policies and regulations.

What are the next steps?

As the Charlotte Future 2040 Comprehensive Plan is being developed, the City’s UDO team is working with the UDO Advisory Committee to develop the various components of the Unified Development Ordinance, which will serve as a primary implementation tool for the Comprehensive Plan. The first public draft of the complete UDO will be available in Spring 2021.

Most Recent UDO Advisory Committee Meeting