Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Meyer signs land use legislation to promote econ. growth, protect neighborhoods

Delaware Public Media

New Castle County Executive Matt Meyer signed a trio of ordinances Monday addressing land use in the county.

Meyer says the new laws seek to boost economic development, while safeguarding communities where growth occurs.

In designated Economic Empowerment Districts, areas, such as Claymont and the Route 9 corridor, will have additional flexibility and predictability in permitting – as well as streamlined review and approval to make them more attractive to business.

“What that does is it allows essentially a targeted rezoning –is one way you could put it," said new county land use general manager Rich Hall.  "It allows the developer of a site flexibility within that site so everything’s not so pre-prescribed, in a one-size fits all,  cookie-cutter fashion.”

But Hall says communities will still have a say in these districts and projects will continue to face necessary scrutiny.

“Yes, the same traffic standards that apply today will still apply though this process. So, it doesn’t give and out to those type of traffic studies," said Hall

Meyer also signed into law Neighborhood Preservation Overlay Districts where communities will have more say in setting standards such as setbacks, height restrictions and streetscapes.

“That enables neighborhoods to change or modify the character of their neighborhood in a way that they see fit,” said Meyer.

The county’s Unified Development Code will also now have a set of guiding principles offering detailed explanation of preferred design characteristics and encouraging creation of walkable communities.

The ordinances have been in development for more than two years and are the first phase of work to address land use issues.

These are the first ordinances signed by Meyer since he took office earlier this month.

Tom Byrne has been a fixture covering news in Delaware for three decades. He joined Delaware Public Media in 2010 as our first news director and has guided the news team ever since. When he's not covering the news, he can be found reading history or pursuing his love of all things athletic.
Related Content