The zoning overlay is flexible and responsive and was designed to enhance the Route 129 business corridor by enabling broader use and larger scale development and redevelopment.
Key provisions include the following:
- Expanded uses, including retail, restaurants, hotels, indoor recreation and entertainment, healthcare, fitness centers, child daycare facilities, and parking garages
- Support of special considerations for increased building heights, parking garages, and integrated amenities to stimulate multi-use site development
- New opportunities for the development of multi-family housing to address changing trends and needs
- Flexible parking and landscaping standards
- Streamlined and expedited permitting processes
- Existing underlying zoning remains in place
In 2016, the Town of Chelmsford overwhelmingly voted to approve a zoning overlay for the Route 129 corridor. This significant step towards reinventing itself will help Chelmsford re-establish its regional leadership role as the center of community and commerce for northeastern Massachusetts.
The Route 129 zoning overlay plan received unanimous endorsement by key governing and regulatory boards, demonstrating the depth of Chelmsford’s commitment to economic development and its desire to compete regionally. The Town’s Planning Board sponsored the zoning change, and the Economic Development Committee secured the support of the community. The Finance and School committees unanimously endorsed the initiative as did most of the Board of Selectmen.
The adopted overlay provides smart zoning designed to support current and future market needs, new opportunities for comprehensive (re)development aimed at blending amenities such as restaurants, retail, indoor recreation, entertainment, hotels, and housing to foster a “live, work, and play” environment.