Planned Unit Developments

PAS Report 545

By Daniel Mandelker

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Ten large builders build more than 20 percent of all homes in the United States. And those builders are changing the way land is developed, relying increasingly on planned unit development and master-planned communities that differ significantly from the first generation of PUDs.

This report from APA's Planning Advisory Service will help you revise your ordinance to deal with the new generation of PUDs. Written by Daniel Mandelker, with contributions from Dwight Merriam, David Callies, and others, it provides recommendations on how PUD ordinances can be drafted, with examples from communities around the country. It also includes a review of case law and state statutes.

Product Details

Page Count
Date Published
April 13, 2007
Adobe PDF

Table of Contents


Chapter 1. Planned Unit Development as a Zoning Concept
Some History
Early Reports and Model Regulations
What PUD Is Today
The Changing Market and Policy Environment for PUDs and Master-Planned Communities
New Urbanist and Design Issues
Resource Preservation
Challenges and Changes in the Regulatory Environment
Fitting PUD Into the Surrounding Community
The Role of the Comprehensive Plan
The Advantages of Master-Planned Communities as a Development Alternative
How This Report was Done and What it Includes

Chapter 2. A Checklist for Drafting Planned Unit Development and Master-Planned Community Ordinances
Development As-Of-Right or by Review?
One Type of PUD or Many?
PUD Categories
Which Ordinance, Which Agency?
How Should the Zoning Be Done?
How to Use the Drafting Recommendations in Chapters 3 and 4

Chapter 3. A Review and Approval Process for Planned Unit Developments and Master-Planned Communities
Overlay District or New Base District?
Approval of Development Plan at Time of Rezoning
Approval as a Special or Conditional Use
The Zoning Process
Procedures for the Review of Development Plan Applications
Development Agreements
Amendments to Development Plans
Failure to Develop and the Zoning Reverter
Control Following Completion
Subdivision and Resale
Record Keeping

Chapter 4. Standards for the Approval of Planned Unit Developments and Master-Planned Communities
PUD As-of-Right
Purpose Clauses
Size of Development
Project Approval Standards
Adequate Public Facilities
New Urbanist Design Standards and Policies
Infill Development
Jobs/Housing Balance
Traffic Circulation Systems
Internal Traffic Capture
Pedestrian Circulation Systems
Permitted Uses
Master-Planned Communities
Agricultural and Nonurban PUDs
Transfer of Development Rights
Affordable Housing
Site Development, Dimensional, and Bulk Standards
Vested Rights

Chapter 5. The Law of Planned Unit Development Regulation
Delegation of Legislative Power
Authority to Adopt a PUD Ordinance Under the Standard Zoning Enabling Act
Procedures for Regulating PUDs
Judicial Review of Decisions Approving PUDs
Amendments to Development Plans

Chapter 6. Planned Unit Development Statutes: A State-By-State Summary
State Summaries of PUD Legislation

Partially Annotated List of References