As needs evolve in Western North Dakota, Williston officials are taking steps to be sure zoning ordinances apply to the current needs of the city.
Principal Planner Donald Kress says it's rare for a city to be able to revise all zoning and subdivision ordinances all at one time.
The Unified Development Code is combining city, resident and consultant input to update definitions and processes so that planning practices are consistent in one unified document.
(Donald Kress, Williston Planning & Zoning) "We spend a lot of time with these developers. We spend a lot of time with what we call pre-development, before they even apply. They will meet with us and talk about the nature of the traffic, land use, drainage, many of these things so a lot of these problems are solved before they even apply to us."
Kress says the existing 30 year old ordinances were well done and few changes need to be made, it has more to do with language.
He says existing zones will not be dramatically changed --- a residential area does not need to worry about becoming commercial.
The process began in September looking at zones where certain uses are allowed as well as subdivision ordinances that relate to details like streets, drainage, and lot layout.
A third public meeting is planned for late this summer and the Unified Development Code will begin the public hearing process in the fall.