Code of Virginia

Creating a Report: Check the sections you'd like to appear in the report, then use the "Create Report" button at the bottom of the page to generate your report. Once the report is generated you'll then have the option to download it as a pdf, print or email the report.

Code of Virginia
Title 15.2. Counties, Cities and Towns
Chapter 22. Planning, Subdivision of Land and Zoning

§ 15.2-2285. Preparation and adoption of zoning ordinance and map and amendments thereto; appeal.

A. The planning commission of each locality may, and at the direction of the governing body shall, prepare a proposed zoning ordinance including a map or maps showing the division of the territory into districts and a text setting forth the regulations applying in each district. The commission shall hold at least one public hearing on a proposed ordinance or any amendment of an ordinance, after notice as required by § 15.2-2204, and may make appropriate changes in the proposed ordinance or amendment as a result of the hearing. Upon the completion of its work, the commission shall present the proposed ordinance or amendment including the district maps to the governing body together with its recommendations and appropriate explanatory materials.

B. No zoning ordinance shall be amended or reenacted unless the governing body has referred the proposed amendment or reenactment to the local planning commission for its recommendations. Failure of the commission to report 100 days after the first meeting of the commission after the proposed amendment or reenactment has been referred to the commission, or such shorter period as may be prescribed by the governing body, shall be deemed approval, unless the proposed amendment or reenactment has been withdrawn by the applicant prior to the expiration of the time period. The governing body shall hold at least one public hearing on a proposed reduction of the commission's review period. The governing body shall publish a notice of the public hearing in a newspaper having general circulation in the locality at least two weeks prior to the public hearing date and shall also publish the notice on the locality's website, if one exists. In the event of and upon such withdrawal, processing of the proposed amendment or reenactment shall cease without further action as otherwise would be required by this subsection.

C. Before approving and adopting any zoning ordinance or amendment thereof, the governing body shall hold at least one public hearing thereon, pursuant to public notice as required by § 15.2-2204, after which the governing body may make appropriate changes or corrections in the ordinance or proposed amendment. However, no land may be zoned to a more intensive use classification than was contained in the documentation made available for examination pursuant to subsection A of § 15.2-2204 without an additional public hearing after notice required by § 15.2-2204. Zoning ordinances shall be enacted in the same manner as all other ordinances.

D. Any county which has adopted an urban county executive form of government provided for under Chapter 8 (§ 15.2-800 et seq.) may provide by ordinance for use of plans, profiles, elevations, and other such demonstrative materials in the presentation of requests for amendments to the zoning ordinance.

E. The adoption or amendment prior to March 1, 1968, of any plan or ordinance under the authority of prior acts shall not be declared invalid by reason of a failure to advertise, give notice or conduct more than one public hearing as may be required by such act or by this chapter, provided a public hearing was conducted by the governing body prior to the adoption or amendment.

F. Every action contesting a decision of the local governing body adopting or failing to adopt a proposed zoning ordinance or amendment thereto or granting or failing to grant a special exception shall be filed within thirty days of the decision with the circuit court having jurisdiction of the land affected by the decision. However, nothing in this subsection shall be construed to create any new right to contest the action of a local governing body.

Code 1950, §§ 15-822, 15-846, 15-968.7; 1962, c. 407, § 15.1-493; 1964, c. 279; 1968, c. 652; 1970, c. 216; 1972, c. 818; 1975, c. 641; 1984, c. 175; 1988, cc. 573, 733, 856; 1989, c. 359; 1990, c. 475; 1991, c. 235; 1996, c. 867; 1997, c. 587; 2019, c. 483; 2023, cc. 506, 507.

The chapters of the acts of assembly referenced in the historical citation at the end of this section may not constitute a comprehensive list of such chapters and may exclude chapters whose provisions have expired.