Community Issues - Zoning process

Road Classifications

Current situation

Numerous places in the regulations refer to Road Classifications, which may affect what is allowed or prohibited. In some places, the BCZR correctly references "the Federal Highway Functional Classification Map" as the source for designation of road classifications. In other places, it does not, thus relying on the definition of "arterial street", "collector street", etc in Section 101.1 (which might not be consistent with the Federal definitions and are open to interpretation.

For example, § 1A04.3.B.2 includes a definition of "collector road" as "means a street or road that is intended for travel, including commuter travel, between residential neighborhoods, but not for travel within neighborhoods, and is not designated as a principal arterial".
But §101 contains a definition of: "COLLECTOR STREET, MAJOR A street, or a part of one, that: is intended for travel between neighborhoods or between neighborhoods and other places, but not for travel within neighborhoods; is not an arterial street; and has been designated as a major collector street by the Planning Board by the same method used to designate freeways, expressways and arterial streets. ". (The Planning Board has never done this.)
However, the official Federal glassary says: "In rural areas, routes that serve intracounty rather than statewide travel. In urban areas, streets that provide direct access to neighborhoods and arterials."

It should be noted that the current classifications are indicated on the County's MyNeighborhood web application. SHA also has a GIS application that displays calssificaitons, somethimes differently than the County site.


The current situation leads to confusion. For example, Bill 75-21 include a provision for a reducing set-back if "across from Major Collector Road". The intended property in on York Rd, which is not a Collector. In other cases, it seems that a Zoning Hearing is left with an interpretation based on the definition, rather than the actual classification as shown on the map.

Correction Needed

A complete review and correction of every reference is needed. Mainly, the definitions of these terms should be removed from the BCZR since they are open to interpretation. The established map suffices.

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Updated 27 Sept 2021 by MAP