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Denver Zoning Code Text Amendments

The Denver Zoning Code is a foundational document that evolves with the city as its needs change. The text of the code is periodically amended based on identified needs and public feedback. Text amendments to the Denver Zoning Code are generally initiated by Community Planning and Development staff and must be adopted by City Council.

Proposed Text Amendments

LARGE DEVELOPMENT REVIEW TEXT AMENDMENT AND GENERAL DEVELOPMENT PLAN PROCESS UPDATE

In coordination with multiple city agencies, Community Planning and Development is proposing a a comprehensive update to the historical general development plan (GDP) process and the city’s open space requirements. These changes will allow city agencies to better serve large developments and their surrounding communities, and will improve coordination of major elements (open space, area plans, affordable housing, and more) at a much earlier stage of development planning. The refreshed review process is designed to be clearer and more predictable for customers, allowing developers and owners of large development sites to plan more efficiently for large, long-term projects that may evolve over time. 

If approved, these changes would include the following:

  • Lowering the threshold for what size projects are subject to open space requirements from 10 acres to 5 acres,
  • Clarifying what types of space can be used to meet “open space” requirements,
  • Implementing a new large development review process that also formally establishes the infrastructure master plan (IMP) process, and
  • Procedures for the continuation of, and amendments to, existing GDPs.

To learn more about the changes proposed: Slide deck summarizing GDPs and the rationale for changes (PDF) | Text of the zoning code amendment (PDF)

  • Any project that is consistent with an approved development agreement with infrastructure master plan (IMP) requirement, an approved site development plan (SDP), or approved general development plan (GDP) is exempt. Projects that require amendments to these will be reviewed under the new process.
  • New Projects: All project concepts for large developments proposed after the effective date of the amendment (anticipated to be in June 2019) will be reviewed under the new process. All new projects over 5 acres will need to include open space.
  • Projects in Progress: Projects that have already begun the SDP concept phase for the entire development area must submit a formal SDP with fees paid by October 1, 2019, to remain exempt from these changes.  
    • Inactive Projects: Any project that was released from concept before October 1, 2018, that has not yet submitted a formal SDP may be re-evaluated under the new review process and open space requirements.
    • Rezoning applications that are submitted with all applicable fees paid by the effective date of the amendment (anticipated to be in June 2019) will be exempt from completing the new large development review process at time of rezoning. However, please be aware that these changes may apply to projects if they proceed to submitting a subdivision application or an SDP. 
    • Likewise, subdivision applications that are submitted with all applicable fees paid by the effective date of the amendment will be exempt from completing the new large development review process at time of subdivision, but would go through the new review at time of SDP.

Any project that would like to use the improved review process for large developments may do so, regardless of the dates above.

Learn more about the new review process: Start on slide 16 (PDF)

Contact Senior City Planner Jeff Hirt (Jeffrey.Hirt@denvergov.org) for questions and comments.


ZONING AND DESIGN STANDARDS AND GUIDELINES FOR THE NATIONAL WESTERN CENTER

Community Planning and Development is proposing zoning changes and design standards and guidelines by which projects in the National Western Center will be reviewed and permitted. 


DENVER REVISED MUNICIPAL CODE AMENDMENT FOR PARTIAL REZONING OF FORMER CHAPTER 59 PLANNED UNIT DEVELOPMENTS

Community Planning and Development is proposing a text amendment simplifying the requirement for who can submit an application to rezone a portion of a Former Chapter 59 PUD to a district in the Denver Zoning Code by requiring the consent of only those property owners within the portion being rezoned.  Send comments and questions to Libbie Adams, Associate City Planner, at libbie.adams@denvergov.org


PARKING MAXIMUM ZONING OVERLAY

To implement the vision of the 41st and Fox Station Area Plan for walkable, mixed-use transit-oriented development with opportunities for additional housing, jobs and services, Community Planning and Development is proposing a zoning overlay to establish parking maximums for development for the 184-acre portion of the station area east of Interstate 25.


GROUP LIVING TEXT AMENDMENT

In light of increasing demand for non-traditional housing in Denver, the evolving needs of residents and recent changes to state and federal housing regulations, city planners will work with an advisory committee to evaluate the Denver Zoning Code’s rules for “group living.” This evaluation will include a review of land uses and definitions for: households, community corrections facilities, shelters for the homeless, residential care homes, new uses like tiny home villages, and more. Based on this evaluation, planners will recommend updates to the zoning code for some or all of these housing types.


Recently Adopted Text Amendments

CENTRAL PLATTE VALLEY-AURARIA PLAN IMPLEMENTATION - co-sponsored by Councilmen Albus Brooks and Rafael Espinoza

City Council has adopted amendments to the Denver Zoning Code to implement the vision for the Central Platte Valley-Auraria District, as laid out in the Downtown Area Plan Amendment


COLORS AS SIGNS CLARIFICATION TEXT AMENDMENT - Adopted Monday, October 8, 2018

Community Planning and Development amended the definition of a “sign” in the Denver Zoning Code to remove the word “colors.” Signs typically have words, images, designs, and other attributes that serve to advertise, and while colors may be part of such designs by nature, the zoning code has historically not been interpreted to consider color alone as constituting a sign. 

ONE-STORY PORCH SETBACK ENCROACHMENT CORRECTION TEXT AMENDMENT - Adopted Monday, October 8, 2018

Community Planning and Development corrected a code drafting error adopted in the May 2018 Slot Home text amendment that may have caused confusion regarding allowed setback encroachments for porches and similar features in some zone districts. One-story and multi-story porches have historically been allowed to encroach into minimum primary street setbacks. This amendment would correct code language to ensure that one-story porch allowances match those for multi-story porches. It maintains allowed side interior setback encroachments for one-story porches on the Town House building form added with the May 2018 Slot Home text amendment.


All Adopted Denver Zoning Code Amendments

View the full Legislative History of Denver Zoning Code Text Amendments (PDF), which outlines zoning code changes adopted by City Council to date. The legislative history includes ordinance number, effective date, applicable Denver Zoning Code provisions, and keywords.  Text amendments to the code follow the procedure set out in the Denver Zoning Code, Article 12, Section 12.4.11.

Redline Versions
By clicking on the redline versions, you can view and print a marked-up version of the text amendment to learn what changed.

The Denver Zoning Code was originally published on June 25, 2010. The following are amendments to the original version of the code.  

The Denver Zoning Code was restated and republished on April 7, 2014. The following amendments are to the updated 2014 version of the code.

The Denver Zoning Code was restated and republished on July 6, 2015. The following amendments are to the updated 2015 version of the code.

The Denver Zoning Code was restated and republished on May 5, 2017. The following amendments are to the updated 2017 version of the code.

The Denver Zoning Code was restated and republished on May 24, 2018. The following amendments are to the updated 2018 version of the code.

The Denver Zoning Code was originally published June 25, 2010. It was re-published in its entirety including 2018 Text Amendment Bundle on May 24, 2018.

Page replacements for Text Amendment 1 (PDF) - effective June 22, 2018
Page replacements for Text Amendment 2 (PDF) - effective October 11, 2018
Page replacements for Text Amendment 3 (PDF) - effective December 20, 2018

If you use assistive technology and would like to access the content in these documents, please contact planning@denvergov.org.

 
Submit Comments

We welcome your comments on pending text amendments. Comments may be provided by mail or in person at public hearings. The following types of written comments are accepted:

  • Citizen comments
  • RNO position statements

For complete instructions on when and how to submit comments, visit the Contact the Planning Board page.

Neighborhood Position Statements

Denver CPD notifies Registered Neighborhood Organizations (RNOs) of pending amendments affecting areas located inside or within 200 feet of their established boundaries. 

For text amendments, RNOs receive a public hearing notice prior to City Council public hearings.  A RNO is encouraged to: