Welcome to the Planning Department homepage. By clicking on the tabs at the top of this page you can find updates about the work underway, how to contact us, and answers to Frequently Asked Questions. On the left side of this page is a list of relevant and major topics related to the department's work. This includes the tools needed to: File a building permit (Submit a Permit); research a parcel or project (Maps & GIS, Planning Ordinance, Development Projects); or, understand our town's approach to planning and development (Planning Principles).
About the Department
Davidson's traditional character is that of a small town, so land planning will reflect its historic patterns of village-centered growth, with connection of neighborhoods, preservation of rural areas, and provision of public spaces. Our quality of life is enhanced through the Town’s Planning Principles, the Davidson Planning Ordinance, and by assessing town needs through plans, reports, and studies.
Our department's webpages contain an array of resources and are one of the best ways to learn about the work underway. For example, if you received a letter about a proposal or saw a sign announcing a hearing or project, see the Development Projects or Map & Text Amendments sections for more information. These webpages can be accessed on the left-hand side of this page.
Hello Davidson Community Members,
Below you’ll find a list and short description of things that we’re working on, along with how to find additional information about each topic. We hope you find this information useful. If you want to follow up with us about any questions you may have, please do so – our contact information is available on our department’s homepage. Check back from time to time for updates.
- Town of Davidson Planning Department
1. Comprehensive Plan: It’s been a busy few months for the comprehensive plan! The Planning Advisory Group (i.e., resident steering committee), various members of the town’s advisory boards, and the Davidson Board of Commissioners provided feedback at several points in the late summer/early fall. With their feedback incorporated, the town released the draft plan to the public on October 31, 2019. Over the course of the two-week public comment period, which ended November 14th, residents and stakeholders had a number of opportunities to review the plan and make comments in person as well as online. The open house on November 7th saw dozens of participants turn out to learn about the plan and share their feedback. The project team is currently working to integrate comments into the plan.
Next Steps: The Davidson Board of Commissioners will receive a report on the public feedback at their December 3, 2019 meeting, where they will also hold a public hearing on the plan. Additionally, it’s anticipated that the Livability and Planning Boards will offer recommendations in November/December. Commissioners will have the opportunity to consider adoption of the plan in January 2020. See www.whatsnextdavidson.com for more information.
2. Development Project Updates:
- Ambleside: In October, the town approved the preliminary plat for a small single-family home community at the end of Catawba Avenue in Davidson. Ambleside, developed by Meeting Street Homes, will feature 14 single-family homes fronting a new publicly-accessible greenway trail along Lake Cornelius. This development will provide the community and surrounding areas with public open space along more than 1,000 linear feet of shoreline. The developer is in the process of installing street and utility infrastructure. The town is reviewing final plat documents for this project. Once the final plat is approved, the developer will be permitted to begin selling lots. For more information, please visit the project website.
- Davidson Cottages Conditional Master Plan: The town received a conditional master plan application in early October for 209 Davidson Gateway Dr., near the Davidson Harris Teeter and Woodies Automotive. The applicant proposes 30 single-family detached homes and two duplexes fronting Davidson Gateway Dr. and publicly-accessible internal courtyards (34 units total). Additionally, the plan proposes a trail connecting throughout the property and a small gathering space along the sidewalk towards the southwestern corner. The proposal will continue in the conditional master plan review process – with a Public Input Session potentially occurring in January 2020. See the project website for more information.
- Davidson Farms Master Plan: After sewer extension approval by the Davidson Board of Commissioners in July 2019 and subsequent plan revisions, the project team submitted an updated plan in early November. The 15-lot plan located along Kistler Farm Rd. is currently under review by Town of Davidson and Mecklenburg County staff. A Public Input Session took place Tuesday, November 19. The technical review will be completed in late November and additional plan revisions reflect technical review comments and public input will be required. See the project website for more information.
- Davidson "NoSo" Building: An application was received for an individual commercial building at 320 and 316 South Main Street. The applicant proposes a three-story, +/- 15,000 sq. ft. building with retail space on the first floor and office space above. This project requires a transportation impact analysis and will require review by the Design Review Board. Learn more here.
- Lake Forest CPA Master Plan: An application was received for a conditional planning area map amendment at 480 and 496 South Main Street. The applicant proposes a conditional master plan to allow for a three-story commercial building fronting South Main Street (+/- 30,000 square feet) and a two-story church facility (+/- 30,000 square feet) toward the rear of the project site. The proposed plan also preserves the existing single-family home located at 496 South Main Street for church offices. This proposal requires a transportation impact analysis and will require review by the Design Review Board, and approval by the Board of Commissioners. Learn more here.
3. Proposed Historic Preservation Ordinance: A public hearing was held regarding the proposed Historic Preservation Ordinance. The Town of Davidson was recently designated as a Certified Local Government (CLG) by the State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO). In North Carolina, governments which qualify for certification must have an active and legally adequate historic preservation commission, and must meet the federal requirements for certification. The Historic Preservation Ordinance was drafted using the state model ordinance language with Davidson-specific references. The purpose of working to adopt a version of the Historic Preservation Ordinance is to ensure that the town enforces appropriate state and federal legislation for the designation and protection of historic properties. This is a part of the Board of Commissioner’s 2018-2019 Strategic Plan as it relates to historic preservation. The Board of Commissioners plan to consider adoption of the ordinance on December 3. Learn more here.
4. Historic District North Main Expansion: The Town of Davidson continues to explore the expansion of the local historic district, with the goal of preserving and protecting historically significant structures. Following public input sessions and a windshield survey that took place this summer, consultant Mary Ruffin Hanbury provided a draft report for a portion of the existing National Register District North of the existing Davidson Local Historic District. Next steps include a possible recommendation from the Historic Preservation Commission on November 20. Staff will then initiate the map amendment (i.e. rezoning) process, which includes an informational open house in January, a public hearing in January/February, Planning Board recommendation, and a decision from the Board of Commissioners in early Spring. Learn more here.
Welcome to our contact page, where you can find information about reaching the department or individual staff members. Please note: The quickest way to schedule an appointment is by email or phone. If you leave a voicemail, we'll be sure to return your call within 24 hours.
- Email: email@example.com. For general inquiries this is the quickest way to get an answer to your question. Questions received are routed to the staff member best equipped to respond with the information you need.
- Phone: 704-892-7592. Please be sure to leave a voicemail - this is the quickest way to get an answer to a question via phone.
- Mailing Address: 216 S. Main Street, P.O. Box 579, Davidson, NC 28036.
- Staff Directory: For contact information for each individual please see the Staff Directory
Frequently Asked Questions
Below is a list of our most frequently asked questions, responses, and links to resources.
- 1. Do I need an appointment to meet with a planner? Yes, appointments are preferred. Please call (704 892-7592) or email (firstname.lastname@example.org) the Planning Department to schedule an appointment.
- 2. What is the zoning (planning area) of my property? The Town of Davidson planning ordinance categorizes properties into planning areas. You may locate your property on the Davidson Planning Ordinance map and use the legend to determine the planning area for your property.
- 3. What types of permits are required? There are several types of permits required by the Town of Davidson. They are:
- 4. How do I get a permit reviewed? Permit applications may be picked up at Davidson Town Hall, 216 South Main Street, or downloaded from the permit webpage. You may submit a permit either by bringing it to town hall or using the online permit submittal form. Town planners will review the permit application for compliance with the Town of Davidson Planning Ordinance. Upon approval and payment of the fee, the applicant must submit the permit to Mecklenburg County Land Use and Environmental Services Agency for their review.
- 5. How much does a building/sign permit cost? Fees associated with building and sign permits vary depending on the nature of the project. For more information on planning fees, please see our Fee Schedule.
- 6. How can I develop my property? The Town of Davidson does not generally use density limits or standard setback requirements. Instead, we encourage designers and developers to consider the surrounding context and creatively address the constraints and opportunities on a site by site basis. Sections two and four of the Davidson Planning Ordinance provide a list of permitted uses and site design regulations per planning area. Refer to these sections first, and then contact a planner to set up an appointment to discuss your property further.
- 7. How do I determine the permitted uses for my property? The description of each planning area and its permitted uses is outlined in section two of the Davidson planning ordinance. You may view section two and associated amendments in the Planning Ordinance. Refer to this section first, and then contact a planner to set up an appointment to discuss your property further.
- 8. What are the minimum required setbacks from my property line? Design regulations, including building types, minimum required setbacks, and height restrictions are outlined in section two of the planning ordinance. Additional uses and regulations, including accessory structures, are described in section four of the planning ordinance. You may view sections four and two and their associated amendments at Planning Ordinance. If you have additional questions, please make an appointment to meet with a member of the planning department staff.
Below is a list of links to various websites that may be useful in understanding the town's approach to planning and its requirements. The list also includes various resources and organizations related to planning and development.
- Davidson Mobility Plan
- American Planning Association North Carolina Chapter
- American Planning Association
- Centralina Council of Governments
- Charlotte Area Transit System
- Charlotte Mecklenburg Government Services
- Charlotte Mecklenburg Storm Water Services
- Charlotte Mecklenburg Utilities
- Charlotte Mecklenburg Water & Land Resources
- Charlotte Regional Transportation Planning Organization
- Commercial Technical Assistance Center (CTAC)
- Davidson Housing Coalition
- Davidson Lands Conservancy
- Duke Energy
- Energy United
- Historic Landmarks Commission
- Mecklenburg County Code Enforcement
- Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation
- Mi-Connection Mecklenburg - Iredell
- New Urbanism
- North Carolina Department of Transportation
- PSNC Energy
- Polaris for Mecklenburg County
- Residential Technical Assistance Center (RTAC)
- Scenic Byways
- U.S. Census Bureau Fact Finder