MOTIVATION FOR THE UPDATE
Zoning is most simply defined as the regulation of the location and intensity of human use on the land, for the purpose of protecting the health, safety, and welfare of a community. The use of a zoning code and zoning map help to regulate development in a manner which the community finds desirable. Each community's zoning regulations vary in a variety of ways because the values and desires of residents also tend to vary between communities.
A process to update the Wilmington Zoning Code was initiated in September 2017 by the Clinton County Regional Planning Commission on behalf of the City of Wilmington. The Warren County Regional Planning Commission is helping to facilitate this process by forming a Zoning Task Force, which plans to meet on a monthly basis, as well as researching and providing recommendations on a number of issues relevant to the existing Code.
Several motivations led to the decision to update the City's zoning code. The current version, which can be described as a traditional "Euclidean" code, was mostly adopted in the mid-1990s and likely entailed updates to previous codes. The current code has been critiqued recently in relation to some new developments, resident concerns, and the adoption of a new comprehensive plan in 2015. Some of the primary concerns include lack of development flexibility, excessive parking requirements, deficient signage regulations, and no consideration of community character in the zoning process.