News Release

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Town Plans Strategy to Update Land Management Ordinance

February 24, 2023

The Town of Hilton Head Island has conducted a critical review of its Land Management Ordinance (LMO) to identify deficiencies and strategize a plan to update the policy.

Town staff members and a code assessment consultant team recently met for several days and conducted an analysis of core strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats (SWOT) of the existing policy. The SWOT analysis report is being used to develop amendments to the LMO and complete a full overhaul of the policy. Amendments to the plan will be two-fold:

The initial set of amendments will include the following:

The final amendment set will include a comprehensive review of all chapters, overall code organization, and user-friendliness of the code. More importantly, it will incorporate amendments to further align the LMO with Our Plan, the Town’s Comprehensive Plan, and integrate the district planning outcomes through the Town's Growth Framework, District Planning, and Illustrative Master Plan project.

The proposed LMO changes will create efficiencies, practical expectations, and effective processes for staff and applicants. "The initial amendment set will codify residential and commercial development standards while respecting the community's character and environment. The changes will move the needle towards managing growth smartly while meeting the housing demand and context sensitive site development standards," said Mayor Alan Perry.

In addition to the comprehensive LMO amendments plan, staff is overhauling the development review process. "Our plan review program is now a team approach. Major subdivision and development plans will be reviewed by an internal plan review team, the Planning Commission and Town Council with the expectation that the team and public review process will result in better site design," said Assistant Town Manager Shawn Colin. "As we assess this process, we will include a robust community engagement strategy and communications asking for citizen input, stakeholder participation and business sector involvement. Look for notice about these opportunities in the coming months. Your input is crucial to our success in making the process as seamless and efficient as possible."

"The goal is to deliver a code and development review process that creates a residential and commercial built environment that is reflective of a vibrant, well-planned community. This is an important project that will create the rulebook for Island development now and will influence the Island's character well into the future," Colin said.

Carolyn Grant, Communications Director