The Planning Commission and City Council agendas often include zoning issues. In order to help you better understand zoning and the rezoning process, the Planning Director has provided the following overview.

Zoning Ordinance
The Zoning Ordinance  for the City of Murfreesboro establishes minimum lot size, minimum building setbacks, maximum height, and maximum density permitted for development and land use in the city. It also establishes the manner in which land can be used. The City of Murfreesboro is divided into 28 zoning districts; five of the districts overlay other districts and place additional zoning requirements beyond what would otherwise be required.

To request a zoning verification letter click here.

Land Use
The zoning ordinance allows some land uses by right in certain districts. For instance, a single family residence is permitted by right in a district zoned for single family residences and a building permit will be issued for a single family residence if all other requirements have been met. Other uses are allowed subject to the issuance of a special use permit by the board of zoning appeals. An example of a special permit use would be a church in a single-family zoning district. A church in most instances will be compatible with adjoining residential uses if certain performance measures can be met such as adequate parking, proper access, appropriate screening, and proper placement of dumpsters.
Planned Development
The city's zoning ordinance makes provision for property to be zoned as a planned development. With a planned development a developer can devise a development plan for his property that may deviate from other provisions of the zoning ordinance. Basically, if it is approved, the property will be zoned for that plan and significant deviations will not be permitted unless the developer applies for an amendment to the plan. The planned development zoning alternative allows for innovation for a developer while assuring the maximum amount of protection for adjoining property owners.
Size Regulations
Zoning is often confused with deed restrictions and restrictive covenants. Zoning does not regulate the size of a residence nor the materials with which it is constructed, as may be the case with deed restrictions and covenants. Only the owners of property who are affected by the restrictions and covenants can enforce them and the city will have no standing to enforce them.

Historic Zoning Guidelines
The Murfreesboro Historic Zoning Commission, also continuously active, issues several Certificates of Appropriateness. To see a detailed explanation of commission functions, view the historic zoning section.

Any property owner may request consideration by the city for rezoning his property. This is certainly to be expected as conditions in the community change and land is annexed into the city and is a normal symptom of a growing community. The process for re-zoning property requires an application describing the proposed zoning change, reasons for the change, and justifications for the change along with a $700 application fee or $950 for Planned Development application fee. 

Upon receipt of the complete application and fee, the application will be considered by the planning commission, which will study the request and schedule a public hearing. Notices will be mailed to property owners within 250 feet of the property, a sign will be posted on the property, and a legal notice will be advertised in the local newspaper. After conclusion of the public hearing, the planning commission will prepare a recommendation for the city council, which will also conduct a public hearing after which it will consider the adoption of an ordinance to implement the rezoning.

The zoning map and zoning ordinance are available to download, or for review and/or purchase by calling 615-893-6441 and at the Murfreesboro Planning Department in City Hall at:
111 W. Vine St.
Murfreesboro, TN 37129

Public Hearings
At the conclusion of its public hearing, the Planning Commission will prepare a recommendation for the City Council. The council will then conduct its own public hearing before considering the adoption of an ordinance to implement the zoning, rezoning, or annexation of a property.

Board of Zoning Appeals
The Murfreesboro Board of Zoning Appeals (BZA) is a five-member body appointed by the Mayor and confirmed by the city council. Members of the BZA and their terms are listed here . View the BZA overview.
The board hears requests for variances from the zoning and sign ordinance, requests for special use permits set forth in the zoning ordinance, and hears appeals from administrative decisions. The board's most recent agenda can be downloaded. The BZA meeting dates and deadlines calendar is available here.