USDO Review

USDO Review Image

The City of Albany Common Council adopted the Unified Sustainable Development Ordinance (USDO) on May 15, 2017, to be effective June 1, 2017.  The USDO was the result of a 2.5-year effort to comprehensively rewrite the City’s zoning ordinance and other relevant land development regulations, such as the sign ordinance and the land subdivision handbook.  The existing regulations were in many cases in excess of 40 years old, were no longer consistent with best practices in the discipline and were frequently in conflict with the stated goals and objectives of the Albany 2030 Comprehensive Plan.

Pursuant to Section §375-5(E)(24)(d)(i), the USDO was adopted with a built-in evaluation period.  The purpose of this evaluation period is to shield against any potential unintended consequences that may result from adopting these comprehensive changes without first applying them in practice.  The ordinance directs the Planning Staff to compile a list of concerns or unintended consequences that may arise through the application of the USDO to specific projects, building permit applications, and public comment.  Where the Chief Planning Official (CPO) finds sufficient grounds for the code to be amended, the CPO shall draft and propose changes pursuant to Section §375-5(E)(24) (Amendments to Zoning Map or USDO Text).

Documents & Resources

Meeting Schedule

Meeting Date
Forum Time Discussion Topic Presentation Material
Video
March 3, 2021
Planning and Land Use Committee 5:30pm Overview of USDO Applications, June 1, 2017 – December 31, 2020
Link
Link
March 15, 2021
Common Council Regular Meeting 7:00pm Introduction of ordinance amending USDO Ordinances Introduced
Link
March 29, 2021
Planning and Land Use Committee
5:30pm
Presentation of Planning Department recommendations for changes to USDO Article I --- Discussion of issues and possible amendments Link
April 6, 2020
Planning and Land Use Committee 5:30pm Presentation of Planning Department recommendations for changes to USDO Article III --- Discussion of issues and possible amendments Link
April 20, 2021
Planning and Land Use Committee 5:30pm Review of edits to Article III based upon committee recommendations from April 6th --- Presentation of Planning Department recommendations for changes to USDO Article II --- Discussion of issues and possible amendments to Article II Link
Link
May 4, 2021
Planning and Land Use Committee 5:30pm Review of edits to Article 2 and 3 based upon prior discussions Link Link
May 18, 2021
Planning and Land Use Committee 5:30pm Presentation of Planning Department recommendations for changes to USDO Article IV --- Discussion of issues and possible amendments  (may require additional discussions of Article II) Link Link
June 1 , 2021
Planning and Land Use Committee 5:30pm Review and discussion of edits to Article 4 based upon prior discussions Link Link
June 15, 2021
Planning and Land Use Committee 5:30pm Presentation of Planning Department recommendations for changes to USDO Article V and discussion --- Discussion of issues and possible amendments    
June 29, 2021
Planning and Land Use Committee 5:30pm Review and discussion of edits to Article V --- Discussion of schedule to complete committee work on pending USDO substantive changes    
June 30, 2021
Common Council Caucus
6:30pm Presentation to Common Council at caucus of status of all USDO changes and solicitation of input    
August 3, 2021
Planning and Land Use Committee 5:30pm Review of specific additional edits per discussions    
August 17, 2021
Planning and Land Use Committee 5:30pm Review of specific additional edits per discussions --- Possible recommendation to Common Council for scheduling of hearing    
August 31, 2021
Planning and Land Use Committee 5:30pm Review of specific additional edits per discussions --- Final recommendation to Common Council for scheduling of hearing    
September 1, 2021
Common Council Caucus
6:30pm Presentation of proposed amendments to Common Council caucus    
September 8, 2021
Planning and Land Use Committee 5:30pm Final discussion of USDO and possible amendments before public hearing    
September 20, 2021
Common Council Regular Meeting
7:00pm Public hearing on USDO changes
   
September 27, 2021
Planning and Land Use Committee 5:30pm Discuss any potential changes to USDO as a result of public hearing    
October 5, 2021
Planning and Land Use Committee 5:30pm Recommend any additional changes to Common Council    
October 18, 2021
Common Council Regular Meeting
7:00pm Final Vote on USDO Changes    
           

Discussion Topics

Subject Description Documents
Accessory Dwelling Units
Activating the accessory dwelling unit use allowance included within the USDO
 
Form-Based Zoning Districts
Removing the existing form-based districts in deference to new districts created from the regulating plan areas therein
 
Interpretation Procedure
Refinement of procedures pertaining to Interpretations granted by the Chief Planning Official
 
Land Conservation District
Discussion of splitting the Land Conservation district designation to better distinguish between public parks and natural areas
 
Short-Term Rentals
Creation of a new temporary uses categorization for short-terms rentals
 
Vehicle Fueling Stations Discussion of vehicle fueling station uses in expectation of a transition away from gasoline powered vehicles