Zoning Code Update

       As we work to guide growth and promote equity, the City of Columbus has initiated an assessment of the city’s Zoning Code. Zoning regulates and influences development through standards that guide how land is used, where residential or commercial buildings may be built, and the density of new developments to be constructed. It can be used to help attract new businesses, encourage the construction of new housing, and protect natural resources.

Looking to the future, it is important that Columbus’ Zoning Code be designed to help all neighborhoods thrive. Working with stakeholders, the City of Columbus seeks to update the zoning code to align with community priorities for growth management, equity, affordable housing, job creation, neighborhood vitality, sustainability, and transportation.  

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Project Overview

Columbus, like most communities, uses zoning to regulate such things as property use, building size and placement, setbacks, and open space on any given parcel.  The regulations for a particular property are determined by a combination of the Zoning Map and the corresponding standards in the Zoning Code.

The city is now moving forward to update the Zoning Code.  While there have been many revisions over the years, the Columbus zoning code has not undergone a comprehensive update since the 1950s.    

Phase One

On October 20th 2021, The City of Columbus held a pair of public presentations to share the results of the phase one assessment. Lead consultant Lisa Wise Consulting, and her team, spoke of the historic growth of Columbus, the key findings of their initial assessment, and the imperatives and recommendations for updating the 70 year old code.


The presentations can be viewed in their entirety on the City of Columbus YouTube site. Each session can be accessed directly by clicking the links below. Both sessions featured the same presentation from Lisa Wise Consulting – although viewer submitted questions did vary.


Session 1: 10/20/2021 – 3:00 PM


Session 2: 10/20/2021 – 6:00 PM

The first phase of the code update effort is complete. With the help of national consultants, community leaders, stakeholders, and residents, the City has conducted an assessment of the current Zoning Code and process. The team has also identified key priorities and recommendations for how to pursue a revision to the zoning code.  

Phase Two

Phase two will commence in 2022, building from the lessons learned during phase one.  The City will work with the community to develop, propose and undertake changes to the Zoning Code and process, including changes to the zoning map.