Article 17: Transfer of Development Rights
(added at Special Town Meeting of November 5, 2001)
(Amended Annual Town Meeting May 21, 2007)
17.1 Purpose and Intent:
This bylaw enables the transfer of development potential from one area to another. The transfer of development rights (TDR) makes it possible to greatly restrict or even prohibit development entirely in one area called the Sending/Preservation Area and transfer those rights to another area called the Receiving Area where there are little or no impediments to higher density, such as an area serviced by public water and sewer. The density is transferred from a "sending" area to a "receiving" area. By creating receiving areas as markets for the sale of unused development rights in the sending areas, TDR program encourages the maintenance of low-density land uses, open spaces, historical features, critical environmental resources, and other sensitive features of the designated sending areas. When the owner of a sending area sells development rights to the owner of a receiving area, the purchaser thereby increases the development rights beyond otherwise permissible limits. In this manner, local governments can protect a variety of sensitive features while providing a mechanism to compensate any perceived diminution in land development potential. The TDR program is consistent with the Raynham Master Plan to further the conservation and preservation of natural and undeveloped areas, wildlife, flora, and habitats for endangered species; the preservation of coastal resources including aquaculture; protection of ground water, surface water, as well as other natural resources; balanced economic growth; the provision of adequate capital facilities, including transportation, water supply, and solid, sanitary, and hazardous waste disposal facilities; the coordination of the provision of adequate capital facilities with the achievement of other goals; the development of an adequate supply of affordable housing; and the preservation of historical, cultural, archaeological, architectural, and recreational values. (amended ATM 05/2007)
Development Rights: Rights to develop a single-family house lot, expressed as the maximum number of lots permissible on a designated sending area or areas under the applicable zoning by-laws and subdivision rules and regulations in effect on the date of the determination. Development rights (house lots) are computed on a one- for-one basis. Development rights shall not be less than one-for-one; however, determination of the maximum number of development rights (house lots) available for transfer shall be made by the Special Permit Granting Authority (Planning Board) in accordance with Section 17.3. The development rights will be forfeited on the sending area or areas once one development right is transferred from that sending area. (amended ATM 05/2007)
TDR Certificate: Is a document that is recorded at the Registry of Deeds that identifies the Development Right(s) that were approved by the SPGA available for transfer to a sending area or areas. (amended ATM 05/2007)
Transfer of Development Rights (TDR): The severance of development rights from a sending area or areas and the affixing of development rights onto a receiving area or areas. A “receiving area” is defined as a lot or lots in a Residential A or B Zoning District. Development rights can be transferred to multiple areas. The dimensional requirements for said receiving area or areas may be increased above existing zoning bylaw requirements (See Section 17.6) in order to accommodate the transferred development rights. (amended ATM 05/2007)
Sending Area(s): An area or areas of land determined by the Planning Board to be of special importance to remain in a natural state because of its visual prominence, potential vista impairment, ecological significance, fragility, special importance as farmland, its value for recreation, future Town water supply, or because it is important to the Town’s Open Space Plan and/or Town’s Master Plan. The sending area or areas must be residentially zoned. (amended ATM 05/2007)
Receiving Area: A receiving area shall be a lot or lots within a Residential A or B Zoning District which are serviced by municipal water and sewer. (amended ATM 05/2007)
17.3 Determination of Development Rights
(a) To establish the development rights available for transfer, the Planning Board, acting as the Special Permit Granting Authority (SPGA) shall require the applicant to submit a preliminary plan, as defined by the Planning Board’s subdivision rules and regulations as most recently amended. The purpose of the preliminary plan is to illustrate the number of lots that would be available if the sending area or areas were developed as a conventional subdivision, and that number shall serve as the basis for the number of TDRs available. (amended ATM 05/2007)
(b) After a hearing to establish the number of development rights available for transfer in accordance with paragraph (a) above, the Planning Board will issue individual certificates for the number of development rights available for transfer. (amended ATM 05/2007)
17.4 Determination of Receiving Area or Areas
(a) Once a receiving area has been identified, and approved by the SPGA, the applicant may apply for a release of TDR Certificate or Certificates. (amended ATM 05/2007)
(b) Development rights may be transferred at a rate expressed as the maximum number of lots permissible on a designated sending area or areas under the applicable zoning bylaws and subdivision rules and regulations in effect on the date of approval of the transfer of development rights. (amended ATM 05/2007)
(c) The lot(s) created in the receiving area or areas must comply with the minimum dimensional requirements of Section 17.6. (amended ATM 05/2007)
17.5 Permanent Development Restrictions
Any lot or lots deemed to meet the standard of qualifying for a transfer must be either conveyed to the town at no cost or be (added at S.T.M. of November 18, 2002.) permanently restricted from future development by way of a development restriction, such as, but not limited to (amended ATM 05/2007), a conservation restriction or agricultural preservation restriction in accordance with Massachusetts General Law Chapter 184, Section 31-33, as most recently amended. Such restriction shall be submitted to the Planning Board prior to approval of the project and recorded at the Registry of Deeds/Land Court prior to the conveyance of any development right (amended ATM 05/2007). A management plan may be required by the Planning Board, which may describe how existing woods, fields, meadows or other natural areas shall be maintained in accordance with good conservation practices, or how the sending area will be utilized for active or passive recreation (amended ATM 05/2007). Upon receipt of a special permit for development where such special permit is conditional upon the voluntary, permanent restriction of development rights, no TDR Certificate shall be released to the applicant (amended ATM 05/2007) until all documents described in this bylaw have been recorded in the appropriate Registry of Deeds.
17.6 Receiving Area
(a) The lot sizes for the receiving shall must comply with the minimum dimensional requirements below (amended ATM 05/2007):
Minimum Dimensional Requirements
Minimum area 20,000 sq. ft.
Minimum upland 10,000 sq. ft.
Minimum frontage 100 ft.
Minimum front yard setback 45 ft.
Minimum side & rear yard setbacks 20 ft.
(highlighted portions added S.T.M. November 18, 2002)
(b) The Special Permit is not effective until the purchased development rights from the sending area or areas are under a restriction as required by Section 17.5 (amended ATM 05/2007).
Frontage on a cul-de-sac may be 50 feet, but must have a lot width of 100 feet at the front yard setback. ** (** Added ATM 5/29/03)
17.7 Title Recordation, Tax Assessment, and Restriction of Development Rights
(a) All instruments implementing the transfer of development rights shall be recorded in the Registry of Deeds of the jurisdiction for both sending and receiving parcels. The Certificate evidencing such TDRs shall specify the Town of Raynham Assessors’ map and lot number, as well as a legal description and/or a reference to a recorded plan, for the sending and receiving area(s), together with the name of the owner of each parcel and a title reference. (amended ATM 05/2007)
(b) The clerk of the Registry of Deeds shall transmit to the applicable town assessor(s) for both the sending parcel(s) and receiving parcel(s) all pertinent information required by such assessor to value, assess and tax the respective parcels at their fair market value as enhanced or diminished by the TDRs.
(c) The record owner of the sending area or areas shall record at the Registry of Deeds the restriction prior to the transfer of the first development right. Evidence of said recording shall be transmitted to the SPGA indicating the date of recording and deed book and page number at which the recording can be located. The grant of the special permit to transfer development rights shall be conditioned upon such recording, and no special permit for a transfer of development rights shall be effective until the development restriction is recorded. (amended ATM 05/2007)
(d) Severability: ( Section deleted ATM 05/2007)