Zoning Handbook

The Mixed-Use (MU) zones provide for mixed-use developments that permit a broad range of commercial, institutional, and multiple dwelling unit residential development at varying densities. The MU-15 through MU-22 zones specifically cover the Dupont Circle area with the intention of protecting and enhancing the unique characteristics of the neighborhood.

The purposes of the Dupont Circle Mixed-Use zones are to:

  • Require a scale of development consistent with the nature and character of the Dupont Circle area in height and bulk and ensure a general compatibility in the scale of new buildings with older, low-scale buildings;
  • Enhance the residential character of the area by maintaining existing residential uses and controlling the scale, location, and density of commercial and residential development;
  • Preserve areas planned as open gardens and backyards and protect the light, air, and privacy that they provide;
  • Enhance the streetscape by maintaining the public space in front of buildings as landscaped green spaces and limited curb cuts on Connecticut Avenue; and
  • Encourage greater use of public transportation and the free circulation of vehicles through public streets and alleys.

The MU-21 zone is intended to permit high-density mixed-use development with a focus on employment.

mu-21
Development Standards
Floor Area Ratio (max.)1 Height (ft.) Penthouse Height (ft.)/Stories Lot Occupancy
(percentage)
Rear Yard (ft.)1, 2, 3, 4 Side Yard (ft.) Green Area Ratio Zoning Regulation Reference
MU-21 6.5 90 20 100 12 ft. None required; however, if a side yard is provided it shall be at least 2 in. wide for each 1 ft. of height of building but no less than 5 ft. 0.30 Subtitle G, Chapter 6
7.8 (IZ) 1 plus mezzanine (Second story permitted for penthouse mechanical space) 8 ft. for a single-family detached or semi-detached dwelling
6.5 (non-residential)

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

1 A minimum rear yard of 2.5 in. per 1 ft. of vertical distance from the mean finished grade at the middle of the rear of the structure to the highest point of the main roof or parapet wall, but not less than 12 ft.
2 A rear yard is not required to be provided below a horizontal plane as described in Subtitle G § 605.5;
3 Where a lot abuts an alley, the rear yard may be measured from the center line of the alley to the rear wall of the building or other structure; and
4 Where a lot does not abut an alley, the rear yard shall be measured from the rear lot line to the rear wall of the building or other structure.