Continuing the Work of Plan Together.

The City of Columbia and Richland County are undertaking rewrites of their respective Zoning Ordinances and Land Development Regulations. These efforts are are an extension of city-county comprehensive plan updates that began in 2014. The updates will ensure that development regulations align with recent plans, reflect contemporary best practices, and are more user-friendly.

The Process

A comprehensive zoning ordinance and land development regulations rewrite is a significant undertaking. The processes are divided into the following tasks.

Each of these tasks involves opportunities for public review and input.


Task 1

Initiation the project, which includes public outreach and input about key project goals and strengths and weaknesses of the current regulations.

Task 2

Preparing Code Assessment, which involves recommending approaches to achieving the project goals and an outline of the rewritten Zoning Ordinance and Land Development Regulations.

Task 3

Drafting Zoning Ordinance and Land Development Regulations, in two installments.

Task 4  & 5

Preparing Public Hearing Draft of Zoning Ordinance and Land Development Regulations, drafted during Task 4 for Columbia and during Task 5 for Richland County (after testing the revised regulations in Task 4).


Richland County’s process is in Task 3 All draft elements have been completed. Modules 1+2 have been consolidated into a draft that is now being reviewed by citizens and stakeholders.

The City of Columbia has adopted the text of the new Unified Development Ordinance and is now drafting the new zoning map. Prior to final adoption of the new map, the City will be holding a series of public meetings with the community to provide an overview of the process, answer questions, review the new draft map and receive public comments. 


Richland County

Richland County’s Zoning Ordinance and Land Development regulations rewrite process began in early 2017. It will ensure that the County’s regulations are in accordance with and implement the Richland County Comprehensive Plan.

City of Columbia

The City of Columbia’s Zoning Ordinance and Land Development regulations rewrite began in May 2015 following the adoption of Plan Columbia. It will ensure the city’s regulations are in accordance with and implement Plan Columbia and The Columbia Plan 2018.


Plan Together began in 2014 as an unprecedented opportunity for citizens of the City of Columbia and Richland County to shape long-term plans for the future. The chance to work together as we update our growth policies has never happened before and it may be another generation before we have another chance like it. Community input was incorporated throughout those plans, which were adopted by their respective elected bodies in early 2015.

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