North Shore Zoning Study Phase One

The Comprehensive Planning Division completed a zoning study for the North Shore including Forest Avenue from Kent Street to Colville Street, and Tremont Street from Baker Street to Boylston Street.  The zoning study is one step in implementing the North Shore Plan by bringing zoning into compliance with the plan recommendations. The study determined that current zoning was mostly consistent with the recommendations of the North Shore Plan. However, problems included a lack of restrictions on the size of multi-family buildings and other possible compatibility issues with predominantly single-family land uses, as well as a lack of restrictions on the design of new office buildings in R-4 zone.

Generally, the zoning study recommended rezoning existing single-family uses to R-1 Residential and retaining all other existing R-3 Residential & R-4 Special zoning with the addition of development conditions.

The zoning study also contained a Rezoning Policy for Medium/High-Density Infill:

“It is the intent of the North Shore Zoning Study to protect existing single-family residential properties in the urban infill medium/high-density residential development form (see North Shore Plan for more information) while allowing denser projects on a case-by-case basis. The intent of this case-by-case review is to both ensure that new development is compatible with existing development and to regulate the amount of new medium/high-density residential that is permitted on both Forest Avenue and Tremont Street. The recommended conditions are intended to provide provisions that will help ensure compatibility of new development with existing development.

While limited lot sizes on Tremont Street significantly limit opportunities for medium/high-density infill projects, Forest Avenue’s larger lot sizes provide greater opportunities. It is important to be absolutely clear that downzoning to R-1 on Tremont Street or Forest Avenue does not preclude future rezoning to higher-intensity uses. Downzoning of areas to R-1 is intended to provide the greatest opportunity possible for input from citizens, staff, and elected officials. Subsequent requests for rezoning of those areas are to be considered individually. Such requests do not constitute requests for spot zones, as the plan and this study specifically authorize case-by-case consideration”

The recommendations of the zoning study were adopted by Chattanooga City Council on February 8, 2008

North Shore Zoning Study Phase One

If you have any questions or would like additional information,
please contact Karen Rennich, Director of Comprehensive Planning
at (423) 643-5900 or via email at