Public Information Meeting: Seaview Avenue Complete Streets Project

Monday, May 22nd 5 - 8PM Veterans Park (Walkthrough at 5pm) SoNo Brach Library Community Room (Presentation at 6:30pm) We want your feedback! Join the City at the Transportation, Mobility, and Parking (TMP) Team’s second Public Information Meeting regarding the Seaview Avenue Complete Streets project on Monday, May 22nd, from 5-8pm. The project team will present proposed concepts based upon previous public recommendations. The project team is offering two sessions for the public to attend. First, at 5:00 PM a corridor walkthrough along Seaview Avenue for an in-depth discussion on the proposed improvements and second, a presentation beginning at 6:30 PM of the proposed concepts followed by public comment. The walkthrough will commence at the Veterans Park driveway entrance (across from Betts Pl.) at 5:00 PM and the presentation will take place shortly after at the SoNo Branch Library Community Room at 6:30 PM. Free parking at the Webster Lot will be provided for the presentation and public comment period at the SoNo Library. You can come to both sessions, or just one! More information to follow next week. For any questions, please contact Greg Pacelli, Transportation Planner for the Department of Transportation, Mobility, and Parking, at or 203-854-7275.  

Norwalk Zoning Regulations Update for District A

Norwalk Zoning Regulations Update for District A

May 24, 2023
6:00 PM
Norwalk Public Library, 1 Belden Ave.
Join the City of Norwalk and District A to discuss the proposed Zoning Regulations!
Please note: This public hearing will be in person.
You can also join us on zoom zoom link:
To review the public draft of the Norwalk Zoning Regulations and presentation, CLICK HERE.

Norwalk Zoning Regulations Update for District C

Norwalk Zoning Regulations Update for District C

May 2, 2023
6:30 PM
Community Room (1st floor), Norwalk City Hall, 125 East Ave.
Join the City of Norwalk and District C to discuss the proposed Zoning Regulations!
Please note: This public hearing will be in person.
You can also join us on zoom zoom link:
To review the public draft of the Norwalk Zoning Regulations and presentation, CLICK HERE.

Norwalk Zoning Regulations Update for District B

Norwalk Zoning Regulations Update for District B

May 1, 2023
6:00 PM
Norwalk SoNo Branch Library, 10 Washington St. OR virtually

Join the City of Norwalk and District B to discuss the proposed Zoning Regulations!
Please note: This public hearing will be held in person as well as virtually. If you would like to attend virtually, please use the link below:

To review the public draft of the Norwalk Zoning Regulations and presentation, CLICK HERE.

Norwalk Zoning Regulations Update for District D

Norwalk Zoning Regulations Update for District D

April 26, 2023
6:30 PM
501 Merritt 7, Conference Room (lobby level)

Join the City of Norwalk and District D to discuss the proposed Zoning Regulations!
Please note: This public hearing will be in person.

To review the public draft of the Norwalk Zoning Regulations and presentation, CLICK HERE.

Norwalk Zoning Regulation Update: Public Draft Virtual Presentation

Norwalk Zoning Regulation Update 04.06.2023-ENG To register for the online presentation please visit VIRTUAL DEL BORRADOR PÚBLICO ACTUALIZACIÓN DE LAS REGULACIONES DE ZONIFICACIÓN DE NORWALK Presentación Para registrarse para la presentación en línea, visit

What Are Accessory Dwelling Units and Does Connecticut Allow Them?

  Accessory Dwelling Unit Laws in Connecticut Families come in a variety of shapes and sizes. More younger family members are living at home for longer. Older family members are also beginning to move in with younger members to be taken care of or to help with childcare. Regardless of what your family looks like, it's important to have space for them in your home. Accessory dwelling units (ADU) are one way to add space to a single-family home. When considering adding on an ADU or rental property, there are a lot of things to think about. What exactly are ADUs, what benefits will it have on your home, and what are the laws about them in Connecticut? 

What are Accessory Dwelling Units?

ADUs go by many names. Mother-in-law suites, backyard cottages, accessory apartments, and granny pods are just a few.  At their heart, ADUs are a second, smaller house or apartment that is either attached to or detached from the primary residence. For example, often people have an ADU in their basement or backyard. The size and location of ADUs on a property are typically determined by that municipality’s zoning regulations.  There will be a kitchen, bedroom, bathroom, and living room  area. Each dwelling can be made to cater to a specific person or family size.   Building ADUs can vary in cost depending on where you build it and how big you build it. Creating one in your existing house, like the basement, can be cheaper because you don't have to deal with adding walls, foundation, or plumbing. If you build one detached from your home , you do have to pay for new plumbing and electrical hook ups, it can be more customizable but at a more costly rate.

Benefits for Single Family Homes

  Accessory Dwelling Units for Single Family Homes If you have a single-family home, it can be hard to house extra family members or children who need to live at home longer but want their own space. One of the biggest benefits to owning an ADU is that you create space for family members who need it.  Depending on the location of the dwelling, you can also rent it out to make extra income. ADUs can increase the value of your property by 20%-30%. It can also appeal to more buyers when you go to sell your home. These dwellings can also help reduce gentrification and desegregate neighborhoods by giving opportunities to people who otherwise might not be able to afford to live in certain neighborhoods. 

Accessory Dwelling Unit Laws in Connecticut 

The laws around accessory dwellings in Connecticut changed in 2021. The legislation, Public Act 21-29, requires towns to designate specific zones where ADUs are permitted as-of-right, either attached to or detached from the single-family house.  However, towns can opt out and set their own requirements for ADUs or not allow them at all. One exception to this is that towns cannot require a minimum square footage. Checking local requirements before building will ensure you aren't breaking any laws. 

ADU Laws in Norwalk, Connecticut

In Norwalk, CT ADU regulations were adopted in 1982, with updates adopted by the Planning & Zoning Commission at their December 8, 2022 meeting. There are currently 259 accessory apartments in the city. After reviewing the new state laws, Norwalk agreed with the majority of the new state law. In fact, many of Norwalk’s current ADU regulations already comply with the law, including:
  • Permitted in all zones where the primary use of a property is a single-family residence
  • ADUs allowed to be attached to or within a single-family residence
  • Setbacks and building frontage must be less than or equal to that required for single family residences
  • No more than one parking space for an ADU  
  • A familial, marital or employment relationship between accessory apartment
  • occupant and single family residences owner is not required 
  • Separately billed utilities is not required
The one area of concern for Norwalk was the allowed height of a detached ADU, which the new state law requires to be the same as what is allowed for single-family houses. In Norwalk, the maximum allowable height for a detached ADU varies between 15’-20’, depending on the location of the detached ADU. Additionally, the Norwalk Planning and Zoning Commission updated the design and landscape standards for ADUs, stating, “For detached accessory dwelling units, a buffer, consisting of fencing and/or vegetative screening that includes a mix of evergreen and deciduous trees as well as foundation plantings, shall be required between the accessory dwelling unit and the nearest side and rear property lines. The final determination on the location of the screening and the required materials shall be determined by the Zoning Enforcement Officer, based on the proposed location of the detached accessory dwelling unit and its proximity to the neighboring properties.”

Prohibited Structures

In Norwalk, the following structures are prohibited and shall not be used as an accessory dwelling unit:
  • Mobile homes
  • Recreational vehicles
  • Travel trailers
  • Shipping containers
  • Storage containers
  • Any other wheeled or transportable structures

Procedure for Approval

A certificate in the form of an affidavit which verifies that the owner continues to reside on the premises, the minimum rental duration and all other conditions met at the time of the original application remain unchanged, shall be submitted to the Zoning Enforcement Officer by January 31 of each year. Applications for attached accessory dwelling units shall be permitted subject to approval by the Zoning Enforcement Officer, and applications for detached accessory dwelling units shall be permitted by the Planning and Zoning Commission, subject to Section 118-1451 with a site plan review.  Both forms of approval are considered as-of-right which comply with the standards established by Public Act 21-29.

Seaview Avenue Complete Streets Public Hearing

Public Hearing on Proposed New Zoning Regulations and Map

Public Hearing on Proposed New Zoning Regulations and Map

September 21, 2022 6:00 PM Via Zoom
The Planning & Zoning Commission will hold a public hearing on zoning regulations text amendment to the following:
  • Article 10 Definitions
  • Article 50, Use Regulations Controlling Business Zones
  • Article 70, Use Regulations Controlling Industrial Zones
  • Article 120, Off Street Parking and Loading Regulations
Plus, Schedule Limiting Height and Bulk of Buildings, Commercial and Industrial to create the Industrial #1 Zone and the Industrial #2 Zone in conjunction with a zoning map amendment to re-zone certain existing industrial and commercial areas as Industrial #1 or Industrial #2
At this hearing interested persons may be heard, and written communications submitted.
All application materials are available at the Planning and Zoning Office at City Hall, 125 East Avenue, Norwalk, CT and on the City of Norwalk’s website at
A copy of the agenda and instructions on how to participate in this virtual meeting will be available on the City of Norwalk’s website at:

Audiencia pública sobre la propuesta de nuevos reglamentos de zonificación y mapa

La Comisión de Planificación y Zonificación llevará a cabo una audiencia pública sobre la modificación del texto de los reglamentos de zonificación a lo siguiente:
  • Artículo 10 Definiciones
  • Artículo 50, Reglamento de Uso que Controla las Zonas Comerciales
  • Artículo 70, Reglamento de Uso que Controla las Zonas Industriales
  • Artículo 120, Reglamento de Estacionamiento y Carga Fuera de la Calle
Además, programar la limitación de la altura y el volumen de los edificios, comerciales e industriales para crear la zona industrial n.° 1 y la zona industrial n.° 2 junto con una enmienda al mapa de zonificación para rezonificar ciertas áreas industriales y comerciales existentes como industrial n.° 1 o industrial n.° 2 En esta audiencia se podrá escuchar a las personas interesadas y presentar comunicaciones por escrito. Todos los materiales de solicitud están disponibles en la Oficina de Planificación y Zonificación del Ayuntamiento, 125 East Avenue, Norwalk, CT y en el sitio web de la Ciudad de Norwalk en Una copia de la agenda y las instrucciones sobre cómo participar en esta reunión virtual estarán disponibles en el sitio web de la Ciudad de Norwalk en:  

Missing Middle Housing and How It Benefits Cities and Towns

missing middle housingFrom attracting talented professionals to lowering living costs and allowing for mixed-use development, missing middle housing addresses many issues and alleviates some pressing challenges facing cities and towns today. Overall, missing middle housing encompasses a broad range of dwelling types. In general, these are buildings with multiple units located in easily walkable neighborhoods. For many cities, these can be workable solutions to existing residential neighborhoods. Moreover, they are affordable to low- and middle-income residents, addressing the housing crisis.  Keep reading to learn more about missing middle housing and how it benefits cities and their residents.

What Is Missing Middle Housing?

Broadly speaking, the missing middle is composed of diverse housing types that fall into the category between single family dwellings and larger apartment buildings with many units. Missing middle units are similar in scale to single-family homes, addressing space limitations. They include duplexes, multiplexes, cottage courts, and townhomes. These types of dwellings allow for urban areas that are less dense, more walkable, and offer more open spaces.

Why Is Missing Middle Housing Needed?

Currently, there is a growing gap between upcoming demographics and available housing options. If missing middle housing were built, it would offer an affordable alternative. Those who work in the city could purchase property, build equity-based wealth, and still live affordably. In addition to greater affordability, missing middle housing also addresses housing demand. Since many aspiring homeowners are priced out of the market, they must keep renting for years. Likewise, the available options for low-priced housing tend to be farther away from urban centers with little access to public transportation. This mismatch between the demand and city-based options is substantial. Moreover, smaller multi-unit dwellings support walkability and keep spending in the local economy. By creating housing options in urban spaces, consumers can utilize public transportation more effectively. Thus, residents would save on transportation expenses and build equity in their new homes.

Who Benefits the Most From Missing Middle Housing?

Those looking for moderate or lower-priced housing would benefit from missing middle housing. These types of multi-unit housing use existing space more efficiently, reducing cost per square foot. Additionally, many creative professionals are not interested in traditional living. As a result, they are willing to live with simplified or downsized amenities. For example, many are looking for a car-free lifestyle, which is impossible in the suburbs. Empty-nesters looking to downsize after their children have left home can benefit from smaller space and reduced expenses. At the moment, these populations often do not have effective options available in cities and larger towns. Missing middle housing options can help to ensure that low and moderate income residents of a city can find affordable housing and remain there where they are close to transportation, jobs and other benefits of urban living.

What is Norwalk Doing to Address Missing Middle Housing?

Norwalk is currently evaluating its accessory dwelling unit regulations to potentially allow more flexibility in how these units are developed. In addition, as part of the comprehensive rewrite of the zoning regulations, the City is considering freeing up certain portions of the smaller-lot, single-family zones, to allow for 2-family dwellings.