Land use and zoning policies adopted by the City Commissioners have been designed to protect, preserve and enhance the City's residential neighborhoods and to encourage higher density residential and mixed-use development in downtown Decatur and the City's other commercial areas.

Decatur has had some form of zoning restrictions since 1925. In 1988 a comprehensive land use and zoning plan was prepared by the Planning Commission and approved by the City Commissioners. This plan is designed to serve as a guide for future land use and zoning decisions. The comprehensive land use and zoning plan is reviewed and amended periodically to reflect changing conditions and community goals. 

Unified Development Ordinance

Decatur is divided into land use districts that establish in a general way how land in the City should be used and into zoning districts that regulate the amount and type of development that can occur on a specific property. These districts are described on the City's Comprehensive Land Use Plan and Zoning Maps. Decatur's Unified Development Ordinance includes the development standards for the different zoning classifications. 

How do I request a change to the Comprehensive Land Use Plan or the Zoning Map? 

Requests for a change to the Comprehensive Land Use Plan and/or the Zoning Map must be considered at public hearings by the Planning Commission and approved by the City Commission. Contact Planning and Zoning Division for more information and to obtain an application. Applications are also available here: Applications and Forms

How do I request a variance from the Unified Development Ordinance?

Variances allow minor exceptions to specific zoning requirements that regulate how a property may be developed. Requests for a variance from the Unified Development Ordinance must be approved by the Zoning Board of Appeals. Contact the Planning and Zoning Division for more information and to obtain an application. Applications are also available here: Applications and Forms 

Master Plans

Proposed Downtown Multiple Dwellings Plans

When a downtown multiple dwelling is proposed on a property that is adjacent to property zoned R60 or R85, the applicant will facilitate a meeting to discuss the proposed plan for property owners and residents who directly adjoin the development site. 

Boards and Commissions