How can I propose a zoning amendment?

Amendments to the Zoning By-Law or Zoning Map are voted on by Town Meeting.  Proposals for amendments can be submitted as warrant articles. Town Meeting is held typically twice a year, once in May and again in November. The open warrant period usually begins in February for the spring Town Meeting and in August for the fall Town Meeting. Warrant articles must be submitted to the Select Board's Office before noon on the day the Warrant closes. Warrant articles submitted by citizens must be accompanied by 10 signatures of Brookline registered voters.  It is recommended that proposed amendments be submitted to Town Counsel for prior review to ensure issues of legality or form are addressed. Additionally, Town Counsel will discuss zoning amendments with Building and Planning staff. We strongly recommend contacting the Planning Department at least two months prior to the Warrant closing date. For more information on this process, read this guide.

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1. What is zoning and why does my project require zoning relief?
2. What is a pre-existing non-conforming use?
3. What is an “as-of-right” project?
4. Why do I need zoning relief if my structure is non-conforming?
5. What are special permits and variances and what is the process?
6. What is the difference between the Planning Board and the Zoning Board of Appeals?
7. How long does a special permit or variance process take?
8. How can I find out what zoning district my home or property is located in?
9. What is Floor Area Ratio (FAR) and how do I calculate it?
10. Do my plans need to be drawn by a registered architect?
11. Do I need an attorney to file an application with a Board or Commission?
12. I would like to put a shed/detached garage/AC condenser/generator on my property. Is this allowed?
13. I would like to add an in-law suite or accessory apartment to my home. Can I do this?
14. What are the regulations pertaining to signage for my business?
15. My neighbor is proposing a project that I am concerned about. What can I do?
16. How do I learn about Major Impact projects and Design Advisory Teams?
17. What is a 40B project?
18. Where can I review past meeting minutes?
19. Where can I read zoning decisions on recent zoning cases?
20. The ZBA voted to approve my application. Now what?
21. There is construction taking place near me that is disruptive/causing a nuisance/does not seem to be following the plans/does not seem to have a work permit/etc. What can I do?
22. Can I subdivide my lot? What is an ANR plan?
23. How can I propose a zoning amendment?
24. How do I learn about Town Meeting zoning amendments?