“Zoning is a technical subject, but it affects everyone.”
So begins the introduction to the 2016 D.C. Zoning handbook, released on Thursday. The handbook is a guide to D.C.’s 2016 zoning regulations “intended to help the citizens of Washington, D.C. understand and participate in the zoning process.”
This is actually the first time that the D.C. zoning map and regulations have been “comprehensively revised” since 1958, according to a press release.
As part of this push to make zoning regulations more understandable and accessible, the D.C. Office of Zoning has also released a new, interactive zoning map. The map, built by the agency Blue Raster on the Esri ArcGIS platform, is a treasure trove of zoning data.
— DC Office of Zoning (@OZinDC) June 8, 2016
Sara Bardin, director of the D.C. Office of Zoning, confirmed that making zoning information more accessible has been a constant goal for her office. “It’s been a mission of ours for years … to level the playing field,” she told Technical.ly.
The new map, as the latest iteration of this mission, includes more information, more clearly laid out than it’s 1958 version, Bardin said. It is color coded by zoning type, has owner information, historical landmark status, ward information, is responsive on mobile and more. And it’s far from done — Bardin said her office hopes to add additional data, like certificates of occupancy, for example, to the map as they manage to gather that data from other organizations.
“We’re always thinking and innovating,” she said.