City of Lewes, DE
Sussex County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
A. 
Symbol: OS.
B. 
Purposes:
(1) 
Preserve the physical diversity and the harmonious relationship of the City with its natural environment by providing an opportunity to preserve lands from urban development.
(2) 
Provide for open space lands, in recognition of the following:
(a) 
Value for recreation and aesthetic pleasures.
(b) 
Importance in maintaining green and open buffers along scenic waterways and views.
(c) 
Need for preserving tidal wetlands in a natural state.
(d) 
Desirability of open spaces in dense, built-up neighborhoods with small private yards.
(e) 
Availability of dredge spoil disposal areas that are unsuitable for urban building development but are suitable for park and outdoor recreation opportunities.
A. 
Symbol: R-1.
B. 
Purposes:
(1) 
Provide for residential development in the outer portion of the City at a lower density. This zoning designation is intended for annexed lands that are already developed at similar densities and for annexation of undeveloped lands.
A. 
Symbol: R-2.
B. 
Purposes:
(1) 
Provide for residential development outside of the City's town center and beachfront area.
(2) 
Maintain lots that will permit the efficient use of public water and sewer services.
(3) 
Diversify the City's residential development pattern by providing an opportunity for lots larger than those found in or near the center of the City.
A. 
Symbol: R-2(H).
B. 
Purposes:
(1) 
Provide for residential development outside of the City's town center and beachfront area.
(2) 
Maintain lots that will permit the efficient use of public water and sewer services.
(3) 
Diversify the City's residential development pattern by providing an opportunity for lots larger than those found in or near the center of the City.
C. 
Historic District.
(1) 
All of the Residential Low-Density (Historic) Zone [R-2(H)] is located within the Lewes Historic District.
(2) 
All properties within the Residential Low-Density (Historic) Zone [R-2(H)] shall be subject to the requirements of Article VI.
A. 
Symbol: R-3.
B. 
Purposes:
(1) 
Provide for residential development in the City's beachfront area.
(2) 
Preserve the distinctive residential character of the City's beachfront area.
(3) 
Preserve physical and visual access to nearby beaches and marshes.
A. 
Symbol: R-3(H).
B. 
Purposes:
(1) 
Provide for residential development in the City's beachfront area.
(2) 
Preserve the distinctive residential character of the City's beachfront area.
(3) 
Preserve physical and visual access to nearby beaches and marshes.
C. 
Historic District.
(1) 
All of the Residential Beach (Historic) Zone [R-3(H)] is located within the Lewes Historic District.
(2) 
All properties within the Residential Beach (Historic) Zone [R-3(H)] shall be subject to the requirements of Article VI.
A. 
Symbol: R-4.
B. 
Purposes:
(1) 
Provide for residential development adjacent to the City's town center.
(2) 
Preserve face-to-face intimacy in an urban setting.
(3) 
Preserve architecturally diverse but harmonious streetscapes.
(4) 
Encourage a residential development pattern that is:
(a) 
Appropriate for older, densely settled sections of the City and also provides for light, air, and private open space.
(b) 
Compact and urban so that nearby commercial and public services are available to residents by walking or bicycling.
A. 
Symbol: R-4(H).
B. 
Purposes:
(1) 
Provide for residential development adjacent to the City's town center.
(2) 
Preserve face-to-face intimacy in an urban setting.
(3) 
Preserve architecturally diverse but harmonious streetscapes.
(4) 
Encourage a residential development pattern that is:
(a) 
Appropriate for older, densely settled sections of the City and also provides for light, air, and private open space.
(b) 
Compact and urban so that nearby commercial and public services are available to residents by walking or bicycling.
C. 
Historic District.
(1) 
All of the Residential Medium-Density (Historic) Zone [R-4(H)] is located within the Lewes Historic District.
(2) 
All properties within the Residential Medium-Density (Historic) Zone [R-4(H)] shall be subject to the requirements of Article VI.
A. 
Symbol: R-5.
B. 
Purposes:
(1) 
Provide for a mix of housing types to include multifamily and affordable housing alternatives.
A. 
Symbol: LC.
B. 
Purposes:
(1) 
Provide an area appropriate for a mix of residential uses and a limited number and types of commercial uses.
(2) 
Establish density standards that respect not only residential uses in the zone but also adjacent residential neighborhoods.
(3) 
Restrict the size and intensity of nonresidential uses to a scale that is compatible with adjacent and intervening residential uses.
(4) 
Preserve residential character by requiring structures to maintain a residential appearance.
A. 
Symbol: LC(H).
B. 
Purposes:
(1) 
Provide an area appropriate for a mix of residential uses and a limited number and types of commercial uses.
(2) 
Establish density standards that respect not only residential uses in the zone but also adjacent residential neighborhoods.
(3) 
Restrict the size and intensity of nonresidential uses to a scale that is compatible with adjacent and intervening residential uses.
(4) 
Preserve residential character by requiring structures to maintain a residential appearance.
C. 
Historic District.
(1) 
All of the Limited Commercial (Historic) Zone [LC(H)] is located within the Lewes Historic District.
(2) 
All properties within the Limited Commercial (Historic) Zone [LC(H)] shall be subject to the requirements of Article VI.
A. 
Symbol: C/H.
B. 
Purposes:
(1) 
Provide for historic and cultural resources unique to Lewes as the "first town in the first state."
(2) 
Recognize the characteristics and importance of historic and culturally significant properties.
C. 
Special considerations.
(1) 
Properties within the Cultural/Historic Zone may be used for minor commercial activities under the following conditions:
(a) 
Such activities shall be undertaken only by those public service organizations directly involved with that property.
(b) 
Such activities shall be nonprofit in nature.
(c) 
Such activities shall be subject to all relevant City codes.
A. 
Symbol: CF.
B. 
Purposes:
(1) 
Provide for community facilities and services which, although they generate high levels of traffic during the day, are compatible with one another and contribute to the recreation, safety, and functioning of the City.
A. 
Symbol: CF(E).
B. 
Purposes:
(1) 
Provide for educational institutions at all levels in the City of Lewes.
(2) 
Recognize the important role of public and private educational institutions in the life of the community.
(3) 
Recognize that university and college activities in Lewes:
(a) 
Reinforce the City's relationship with the sea.
(b) 
Create year-round employment opportunities.
(c) 
Promote physical and cultural diversity within the community.
A. 
Symbol: CF(HC).
B. 
Purposes:
(1) 
Provide for hospital, medical center, major nursing care and other health care institutions in the City of Lewes.
(2) 
Recognize the important role of health care institutions in:
(a) 
Providing acute care, therapeutic services and long-term care for the residents.
(b) 
Creating employment opportunities.
A. 
Symbol: TC.
B. 
Purposes:
(1) 
Sustain a centralized, commercial, residential, and cultural core in the center of the City.
(2) 
Strengthen connections between the town center and the City's residential districts.
(3) 
Create a pedestrian corridor from the mainland to the bay.
(4) 
Provide for establishments offering retail products and services, commercial entertainment, professional and financial services, and other businesses which are vital to a year-round working community.
(5) 
Encourage a mix of retail, office, and residential uses, consistent with the existing scale and character of the area, in order to promote the economic stability of the area.
(6) 
Provide for apartment dwellings in conjunction with retail, office, and service uses, but only on the stories above street level.
C. 
Notes.
(1) 
In this zone, five-percent lot coverage must remain open with access from the road or sidewalk to that open area.
A. 
Symbol: TC(H).
B. 
Purposes:
(1) 
Sustain a centralized, commercial, residential, and cultural core in the center of the City.
(2) 
Strengthen connections between the town center and the City's residential districts.
(3) 
Create a pedestrian corridor from the mainland to the bay.
(4) 
Provide for establishments offering retail products and services, commercial entertainment, professional and financial services, and other businesses which are vital to a year-round working community.
(5) 
Encourage a mix of retail, office, and residential uses, consistent with the existing scale and character of the area, in order to promote the economic stability of the area.
(6) 
Provide for apartment dwellings in conjunction with retail, office, and service uses, but only on the stories above street level.
C. 
Notes.
(1) 
In this zone, five-percent lot coverage must remain open with access from the road or sidewalk to that open area.
D. 
Historic District.
(1) 
All of the Town Center (Historic) Zone [TC(H)] is located within the Lewes Historic District.
(2) 
All properties within the Town Center (Historic) Zone [TC(H)] shall be subject to the requirements of Article VI.
A. 
Symbol: MC.
B. 
Purposes: Preserve the City's historic connection to the sea by:
(1) 
Encouraging a mix of retail and residential uses that complement and support a marina.
(2) 
Ensuring that the character and scale of development in the zone is compatible with a marina.
(3) 
Prohibiting the establishment of and the continuation of industrial uses not compatible with the characteristics of a Marine Commercial Zone.
C. 
Notes.
(1) 
In this zone, five-percent lot coverage must remain open with access from the road or sidewalk to that open area.
A. 
Symbol: GC.
B. 
Purpose: Provide residents and visitors with a variety of commercial goods and services in locations convenient to the City's residential areas.
C. 
Notes.
(1) 
In this zone, five-percent lot coverage must remain open with access from the road or sidewalk to that open area.
A. 
Symbol: I.
B. 
Purpose: Accommodate enterprises engaging in the manufacturing, processing, creating, repairing, renovating, cleaning or assembling of goods, merchandise or equipment.
[Added 5-14-2018]
A. 
Symbol: AX-RES.
B. 
Purposes: The purpose of the AX-RES Zone is to:
(1) 
Provide opportunities for residential development in areas not currently within existing City borders to be annexed into the City in accordance with adopted Comprehensive Plan policies;
(2) 
Conserve open land, including those areas containing unique and sensitive natural resources such as woodlands, streams, floodplains, and wetlands, by setting them aside from development;
(3) 
Provide development options for landowners which minimize impacts on sensitive environmental resources, reduce disturbance of natural and cultural features, and conserve scenic views; and
(4) 
Provide greater design flexibility and efficiency in the siting of services and infrastructure, including the opportunity to reduce the length of roads, utilities, and the amount of paving and impervious surface required for residential development.
[Added 5-14-2018]
A. 
Symbol: AX-MIX.
B. 
Purposes: The purpose of the AX-MIX Zone is to:
(1) 
Provide opportunities for a mix of residential uses and a limited number of types of nonresidential uses in areas not currently within existing City borders to be annexed into the City in accordance with adopted Comprehensive Plan policies;
(2) 
Establish density standards that respect not only residential uses in the zone but also adjacent residential neighborhoods;
(3) 
Restrict the size and intensity of nonresidential uses to a scale that is compatible with adjacent and intervening residential uses; and
(4) 
Provide residential character by requiring structures to maintain a residential appearance.