City Council Approves Tree Ordinance Amendments

The Charlotte City Council this week approved an amendment to its Tree Ordinance that immediately eliminates the density bonus for single-family lot development “not subject to” the subdivision ordinance, while also expanding a perimeter buffer requirement for all new single-family subdivisions using the tree save incentive.

REBIC had been lobbying against the changes, and while we were unsuccessful in convincing Council to preserve the incentive for individual lots, we were able to secure a three-month deferral in the effective date of the perimeter buffer requirement.

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Charlotte Hosts Public Meeting This Thursday on Proposed Tree Ordinance Revisions

The City of Charlotte will host a Community Information meeting this Thursday evening on proposed changes to the Tree Ordinance, which could dramatically change the current tree preservation incentives for single-family development.

The meeting will take place Thursday, June 16, from 6-8 pm in Room 280 of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Government Center (located at 600 East 4th Street). Staff is expected to unveil a proposed text amendment to address the issue, and all interested home builders and developers are strongly encouraged to attend.

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City Staff Recommends Against Further Changes to PCCO

In a recent memo to the City Council, Charlotte Engineer Jeb Blackwell recommended against taking any addition action to revise the Post-Construction Controls Ordinance (PCCO) in order to eliminate a Natural Area requirement that conflicts with the Tree Ordinance. Last November, Council rejected a proposal to remove the Natural Area requirement from the PCCO, but asked staff to come back with ideas on how to address the duplicative regulation in a way that would provide the highest possible protection of trees.

In the memo, which you can download HERE, Blackwell said staff would continue to monitor future development plans to determine if any future changes to either the PCCO or Tree Ordinance are warranted. Currently, developers are required to comply with either the PCCO Natural Area requirement OR the Tree Ordinance, whichever is more stringent. Because so few development plans are currently being submitted, staff does not believe it has enough cases on which to base a recommendation for additional changes.

In the coming months, REBIC will continue to work with City staff to evaluate the need for any additional amendments to either the PCCO or Tree Ordinance. We welcome any examples where a conflict between the two ordinances has caused significant delay in plan review, but concur with the staff recommendation against further changes at this time.