Zoning Handbook

The Mixed-Use (MU) zones provide for mixed-use developments that permit a broad range of commercial, institutional, and multi-family residential development at varying densities.
The MU zones are designed to provide facilities for housing, shopping, and business needs, including residential, office, service, and employment centers.
In addition to the purpose statements of individual chapters, the purposes of the MU zones are to:

  • Provide for the orderly development and use of land and structures in the MU zones, characterized by a mixture of land uses;
  • Provide for a varied mix of residential, employment, retail, service, and other related uses at appropriate densities and scale throughout the city;
  • Reflect a variety of building types, including, but not limited to, shop-front buildings which may include a vertical mixture of residential and non-residential uses, buildings made up entirely of residential uses, and buildings made up entirely of non-residential uses;
  • Encourage safe and efficient conditions for pedestrian and motor vehicle movement;
  • Ensure that infill development is compatible with the prevailing development pattern within the zone and surrounding areas; and
  • Preserve and enhance existing commercial nodes and surroundings by providing an appropriate scale of development and range of shopping and service opportunities;
  • Ensure that buildings and developments around fixed rail stations, transit hubs and streetcar lines are oriented to support active use of public transportation and safety of public spaces.
  • In the MU zones, buildings may be entirely residential, or may be a mixture of non-residential and residential uses.

The development standards are intended to:

  • Control the bulk or volume of structures, including height, FAR, and lot occupancy;
  • Control the location of building bulk in relation to adjacent lots and streets, by regulating rear setbacks, side setbacks, and the relationship of buildings to street lot lines;
  • Regulate the mixture of uses; and
  • Ensure the environmental performance of development.
Example of Zoning Data in DC

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Use Permissions Courtyards Parking Inclusionary Zoning
Subtitle U, Chapter 5 Subtitle G, § 202 Subtitle C, Chapter 7 Subtitle C, Chapter 10