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IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN APPLYING FOR A SPECIAL USE PERMIT TO OPERATE A SHORT-TERM RENTAL, PLEASE CONTACT THE YORK COUNTY PLANNING DIVISION AT (757) 890-3404 OR BY EMAIL AT PLANNING@YORKCOUNTY.GOV, OR VISIT OUR OFFICE AT 100 COUNTY DRIVE IN YORKTOWN.
Find out more about the Comprehensive Plan here.
The Planning Division office is located at 100 County Drive, Yorktown. View the contact information for the Planning Division.
The official Census count for York County is 70,045 residents.
The Planning Commission is a group of seven County citizens appointed by the Board of Supervisors to serve as an advisory body on land use planning issues. There is one representative from each of the County's five election districts, plus two members who represent the County at large. The main purpose of the Planning Commission is to review each application, conduct a public hearing, and then make a recommendation of approval or denial to the Board of Supervisors. The Board makes the final decision on all applications. For more details, visit the Planning Commission webpage.
What can and cannot be built on a piece of property depends on how it is zoned. For every zoning district in the County, there are certain uses that are allowed as a matter of right, other uses that are allowed only with the approval of a Special Use Permit by the Board of Supervisors, and some uses that are not allowed. All rezoning and Special Use Permit applications are referred to the Planning Commission. Zoning stems largely from the Comprehensive Plan. Use the York County Property Information System to determine the zoning designation for a specific address and the Table of Land Uses to determine permissible uses.
The Comprehensive Plan is the long-range plan for the physical development of the County. It sets forth the County's future plans for land use, transportation, community facilities, the environment, housing, economic development, and historic resources. It is implemented by the County's various development ordinances, particularly the Zoning and Subdivision Ordinances, as well as the Capital Improvements Program. In accordance with the Code of Virginia, the Plan is reviewed and, if necessary, updated every five years through a public process. View the current Comprehensive Plan, Charting the Course to 2035.
Accessory apartments are permitted as a matter of right in all single-family residential zoning districts as long as the floor area of the apartment does not exceed 1,000 square feet or 35% of the floor area of the principal dwelling - or 49% upon authorization by Special Use Permit - whichever is less. In no case can the lot coverage (i.e., building footprint) of a detached accessory apartment exceed 75% of the lot coverage of the principal structure.
As a general rule, home occupations that do not have customer or client contact on the premises are permitted by right . Home occupations that involve on-premises customer or client contact usually require a Special Use Permit from the Board of Supervisors. There are exceptions - including photography studios, day care for up to 4 children, and tutoring or music lessons for up to 4 persons - all of which are permitted as a matter of right in the RC, RR, R33, R20, and R13 zoning districts.
Other home occupations that require a Special Use Permit include those that have non-resident employees or generate a parking demand for at least 3 parking spaces. Small contracting businesses in the RC, RR, or WCI zoning district also require a Special Use Permit. Prohibited home occupations include auto repair and servicing, funeral homes, gift shops, medical or dental clinics and restaurants. For a list of permissible and prohibited home occupations, see sections 24.1-282, 24.1-283, and 24.1-284 of the York County Zoning Ordinance. Use the York County Property Information System to determine the zoning designation for a specific address.
All owners of adjacent property are notified by mail of rezoning and use permit applications. The County also posts a sign on any property that is the subject of an application. Public hearing notices appear in the legal advertisement section of Friday’s Daily Press five and twelve days before the meeting date. You can find the Planning Commission’s upcoming meeting agenda on the Planning Division page.
Every application is unique and involves its own set of issues. However, the three major issues that are generally of greatest importance to the Commission in making its recommendation are:- Is the proposed use consistent with the Comprehensive Plan?- Is the proposed use compatible with surrounding development?- What impact will the proposed use have on roads, utilities, schools, and other public facilities and services?
For more details, visit the Special Use Permits webpage.
The Commission meets on the 2nd Wednesday of each month at 7 p.m. at York Hall in the 2nd floor Board Meeting Room, 301 Main Street, Yorktown, VA 23690. Meetings are televised live on Channel 46 and streamed live on the WYCG-TV website.
The most effective way to participate is to speak at the public hearing. There are sign-up forms at the meeting for those who wish to address the Commission. Applicants are given 10 minutes to present their case to the Commission. All other speakers have up to 3 minutes each. Citizens may also write, call, or email the Planning Division or the Planning Commission.
Signed petitions pertaining to a particular application become part of the public record when submitted. Although petitions can sometimes be an effective way for a large number of people to register their opinion, they are not always an accurate reflection of community sentiment. While the Commission will always consider petitions when evaluating an application, a strong argument made at a public hearing typically carries more weight than a signature on a petition.