Update: Proposed Open Space zoning updates postponed

open spaces example

Update, January 5

The agenda item, open spaces, has been pulled from the January 5 Planning and Zoning meeting agenda. 


Original post, January 3

The City of Asheville Department of Planning and Urban Design is bringing development-related zoning updates to the Planning & Zoning Commission at 5 p.m. January 5 and then to the City Council in February. The updates relate to the City’s development code Section 7-11-4, the  open space standards.


The Open Space standards require certain development projects to set aside areas of open land to support a livable city by providing places that can serve a variety of purposes, including promoting an environmental ethic by creating comfortable, welcoming, accessible spaces that provide for refuge, recreation, and contemplation in an outdoor environment. These open spaces may be hardscape plazas with seating and tables or mostly undisturbed natural sites. Unlike public parks that are shared public property, open spaces created through development projects are located on private property and may only be accessible to the residents or employees of a particular parcel of land. Examples of open spaces are shown below. 

Open spaces examples









Under the proposed zoning updates, the City will continue to require open space for residential as well as for commercial properties. Residential projects that build eight or more housing units and most commercial projects are required to provide open space. 


To learn more about the proposed code updates, watch this 14-minute video or visit the project webpage at www.ashevillenc.gov/openspace.