The Baltimore County Council passed a bill Monday to strip downtown Towson’s current overlay zoning and replace it with a new district that will include a “more intensive design review process” to regulate all levels of development and redevelopment, according to a summary of the bill.
The bill is the culmination of 18 months of work, said its author, Councilman David Marks, who thanked the county’s planning department and planning board in the effort. Marks withdrew the bill twice, and it passed on its third introduction.
The bill does away with a “fragmented and often contradictory” overlay zoning in Towson and replaces those zones with a new downtown Towson designation. The exact borders of the new zone will be finalized through the county’s quadrennial comprehensive zoning map process, Marks said, but will include the highest-density area of Towson.
The bill requires development in downtown Towson to use “high quality building materials,” enable “signature statuesque building at strategic locations,” and integrate “urban design components into the public realm,” according to its summary.