In March 2012, the Council passed Bill 7‑12, which created the Neighborhood Commons (N.C.) Overlay District. Overlay Districts are set forth in Section 259 of the Baltimore County Zoning Regulations. The purpose of Overlay Districts is to establish special land use regulations, standards, or procedures in areas with unique land use, site planning, building design, or environmental resource issues. An Overlay District zoning designation is superimposed over an underlying zoning classification and creates a specific mapped zone.
The N.C. Overlay District was established to provide a means to regulate the development potential of land near or within neighborhoods inside the urban rural demarcation line (URDL) that are typically under‑served by available community open space areas. The N.C. Overlay may be applied only to a property inside the URDL that is (a) owned by a nongovernmental, nonprofit entity and held for the purpose of community parks, gardens, or natural open space areas; (b) owned as common areas by a community homeowners’ association or condominium association organized and operated in accordance with the laws of this state; (c) owned by a state or local government, other than Baltimore County, that is undeveloped, environmentally sensitive, or constitutes a passive recreational area; or (d) is specifically designated as community open space on an approved development plan.
Bill 66-15 removes the language in subsection (c) that exempts the County from the N.C. Overlay District=s provisions and requirements, so that land inside the URDL owned by the County that is undeveloped, environmentally sensitive, or constitutes a passive recreational area may be assigned the N.C. Overlay District designation.
Bill 66-15 shall take effect 45 days after its enactment.