Unified Development Code

Presentation to the City Council on Sept. 17, 2020

Presentation of the draft Unified Development Code (UDC) by consultants Freese and NIchols, Inc.

In an effort to streamline and improve the regulations and codes for development, the City of Longview is preparing a major overhaul of existing zoning, subdivision, and development ordinances into what is known as a Unified Development Code. 

A Unified Development Code (UDC) is a document that consolidates all development-related regulations into a single resource rather than in various separate ordinances. Creation of a UDC was one of the recommended actions within the Longview Comprehensive Plan. In addition to streamlining the existing codes, the City will modernize the land development regulations and development ordinances through the process. 

It is anticipated that the new Unified Development Code will be developed to be:

  • “User Friendly” and easy to read, understand, and interpret for all users, including citizens, staff, developers, and elected and appointed officials.
  • Simple and easily administered by staff.
  • Heavily illustrated, with considerable graphics depicting the requirements, recommendations, and concepts detailed in the code.
  • Flexible to allow for streamlining of the development review process.
  • Encouraging of development and redevelopment, particularly within targeted areas that are consistent with the community’s planning and development goals and Comprehensive Plan.
  • Capable of innovative and creative approaches to land use regulations, including the exploration of form-based or hybrid codes.
  • Applicable to the creation of distinct gateways, major thoroughfares and designated target areas throughout the City. 
The UDC will include the following components of the City’s existing code of ordinances:

  • Chapter 19. Buildings and Structures
  • Chapter 37. Electrical Code
  • Chapter 40, Fire Prevention (Article VII),
  • Chapter 73. Plumbing and Gas (integration only; content revisions not anticipated)
  • Chapter 43, Flood Damage Prevention and Tree Preservation
  • Chapter 85, Signs
  • Chapter 91, Streets and Sidewalks
  • Chapter 92, Subdivisions of Land
  • Chapter 100, Trailers, Mobile Homes and Trailer Parks
  • Chapter 106, Water and Sewers
  • Appendix: Zoning Ordinance
In addition, general utility policy standards for improvements will be addressed to include Interim Design Guidelines, Drainage Design Criteria/Detention Requirements, and standard utility design guidelines and minimums as related to the implementation of various codes.