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Welcome to the Planning Department homepage. By clicking on the tabs at the top of this page you can find updates about the work underway, how to contact us, and answers to Frequently Asked Questions. On the left side of this page is a list of relevant and major topics related to the department’s work. This includes the tools needed to:  File a building permit (Submit a Permit); research a parcel or project (Maps & GIS, Planning Ordinance, Development Projects); or, understand our town’s approach to planning and development (Planning Principles).

Davidson’s traditional character is that of a small town, so land planning will reflect its historic patterns of village-centered growth, with connection of neighborhoods, preservation of rural areas, and provision of public spaces. Our quality of life is enhanced through the Town’s Planning Principles, the Davidson Planning Ordinance, and by assessing town needs through plans, reports, and studies.

Planning Department Updates

September 2021

Below you’ll find a list and short description of things that we’re working on, along with how to find additional information about each topic. We hope you find this information useful. If you want to follow up with us about any questions you may have, please do so – our contact information is available on our department’s homepage. Check back from time to time for updates.

- Town of Davidson Planning Department

1. Historic Preservation Plan:  Development of a town-wide historic preservation plan is well underway. Public outreach to date includes a citizen survey that was available for six weeks in April/May, various stakeholder interviews, and focus group meetings held in early August on the following topics: 1) Neighborhood Preservation, 2) Downtown Issues, 3) Rural/ETJ Preservation, 4) Historic Preservation Processes, and 5) Storytelling. A draft plan is anticipated in fall 2021. There will be additional opportunity for public involvement once a draft plan is available. The historic preservation plan will serve as a guide for proactive preservation decision-making over the next 10-15 years, synthesizing the town’s existing preservation efforts with the desires expressed by the community during the planning process. Additional information is available on the Historic Preservation Plan webpage:

 2. Growth Management Strategies:  At the upcoming September 14 Board of Commissioners work session, Planning Director Jason Burdette, Senior Planner Trey Akers, and Planning Board Vice Chair Shawn Copeland plan to provide an update on the Planning Board Committee’s (PBC) recommendations on growth management strategies. This update builds upon feedback received from the board in April 2021 and December 2020, as well as the two public input sessions last Fall. The board directed the creation of the PBC and its charge to work with staff on various growth management initiatives.

The PBC recommended a primary growth management strategy of codifying the Growth Management Framework and adopting the Utility Service and Annexation Criteria (USAC) from the Davidson Comprehensive Plan. This includes revising the master plan development process located in DPO Section 14 to include additional opportunities for public input on the front-end of proposed projects as well as specific checkpoints for decision-making throughout the master plan process. These updated processes would work together with the USAC to ensure that development decisions would be made using the same data points. 

The board will be asked to provide feedback on the high-level strategies. 

 3. Transportation:

  • Mobility Plan Text Amendment:  In 2019 the Davidson Board of Commissioners adopted the Mobility Plan, a local comprehensive transportation plan that provides a town-wide vision and coordinated recommendations for multi-modal travel and access within and through town. To implement policies recommended in the Mobility Plan, changes to the Davidson Planning Ordinance (DPO) are required. The policy goal recommendations include updating standards for sidewalks, pedestrian crosswalks, advisory shoulders, and multi-use paths (including greenways and sidepaths). Other recommendations originated from concerns raised by staff and commissioners, such as improving the town’s connectivity and alley standards. In August 2021 the Board of Commissioners and Planning Board, and advisory board comprised of residents, reviewed the proposed amendments and offered feedback. On September 14, 2021, the Board of Commissioners will hold a public hearing on the proposed amendments, with the Planning Board offering official comments and making a recommendation at their September 27, 2021 meeting. The Board of Commissioners may consider adopting the amendments at their October 26, 2021 meeting. To see the draft amendments, schedule, and learn how you may participate, please visit the Planning Department’s Map & Text Amendment webpage