Waukegan Unified Development Ordinance

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Aerial view of Waukegan

Project Overview

As part of the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning's (CMAP) Local Technical Assistance (LTA) Program, the City of Waukegan began the process of updating and modernizing their Zoning, Subdivision, Sign, and Landscape and Tree Preservation Ordinances to create a Unified Development Ordinance (UDO). Originally approved in 1987, the zoning ordinance has since had numerous amendments, and would benefit from a comprehensive review and overhaul.

The City of Waukegan, CMAP, and local stakeholders will embark on a community-based process that will align Waukegan's development regulations, land-use practices, and community vision with its 2020 Comprehensive Land Use Plan. The UDO will help direct Waukegan's future growth and build its economic strength.

Key Topics

  • Zoning district updates
  • Allowable uses
  • Subdivision standards
  • Zoning applications
  • Special uses, variations, and amendments
  • Parking and lighting
  • Landscaping
  • Signage

Community Background

The City of Waukegan is the most populous city in- and the county seat of- Lake County, Illinois. The City is located within the Chicago metropolitan area along Lake Michigan, situated 40 miles north of the City of Chicago. As of the 2020 census, the population of the City was 89,321. Waukegan offers commuter rail service to Chicago and PACE Bus service. Waukegan features a growing lakefront and downtown area with an active marina, and diverse neighborhoods. The City utilizes several planning documents to guide land use decision-making:

Community Feedback

We want to hear from you! Public input is crucial and encouraged to develop an ordinance that fits the needs of the community. There are many ways to participate and engage in the planning process, starting on this page:

  • Follow the Plan Updates Tab
  • Complete the Community Survey
  • Connect with the Project Contacts
  • Attend Future Community Meetings

Project Overview

As part of the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning's (CMAP) Local Technical Assistance (LTA) Program, the City of Waukegan began the process of updating and modernizing their Zoning, Subdivision, Sign, and Landscape and Tree Preservation Ordinances to create a Unified Development Ordinance (UDO). Originally approved in 1987, the zoning ordinance has since had numerous amendments, and would benefit from a comprehensive review and overhaul.

The City of Waukegan, CMAP, and local stakeholders will embark on a community-based process that will align Waukegan's development regulations, land-use practices, and community vision with its 2020 Comprehensive Land Use Plan. The UDO will help direct Waukegan's future growth and build its economic strength.

Key Topics

  • Zoning district updates
  • Allowable uses
  • Subdivision standards
  • Zoning applications
  • Special uses, variations, and amendments
  • Parking and lighting
  • Landscaping
  • Signage

Community Background

The City of Waukegan is the most populous city in- and the county seat of- Lake County, Illinois. The City is located within the Chicago metropolitan area along Lake Michigan, situated 40 miles north of the City of Chicago. As of the 2020 census, the population of the City was 89,321. Waukegan offers commuter rail service to Chicago and PACE Bus service. Waukegan features a growing lakefront and downtown area with an active marina, and diverse neighborhoods. The City utilizes several planning documents to guide land use decision-making:

Community Feedback

We want to hear from you! Public input is crucial and encouraged to develop an ordinance that fits the needs of the community. There are many ways to participate and engage in the planning process, starting on this page:

  • Follow the Plan Updates Tab
  • Complete the Community Survey
  • Connect with the Project Contacts
  • Attend Future Community Meetings
  • City Council Meeting - July 1st

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    You are invited to attend the July 1st City Council Meeting being held at the Waukegan City Hall July 1, 2024.

    If you are unable to make the meeting, it wil be broadcast on the City of Waukegan YouTube page linked below.

    https://www.youtube.com/@WaukeganTV

  • Community Development Committee Meeting - June 3rd!

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    You are invited to attend the June 3rd Community Development Committee meeting being held at the Waukegan City Hall June 3, 2024. At this meeting our team will be giving a presentation to the Committee about the finalized Waukegan Unified Development Code.

    If you were unable to make the meeting, you can watch the presentation on the City of Waukegan YouTube page link below.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v0BSi_L9Ycc

  • ¡Nuevas Actualizaciones a la Ordenanza de Desarrollo Unificado!

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    Por favor haga clic en el enlace de abajo para ver los nuevos cambios propuestos al Código de Zonificación de Waukegan. La Ordenanza de Desarrollo Unificado (UDO) modernizará el uso actual de la tierra y las ordenanzas de zonificación con cambios a la señalización, el diseño del paisaje, el estacionamiento y más.


    https://engage.cmap.illinois.gov/14035/widgets/62522/documents/53135

  • You're Invited! UDO Public Open House Events

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    You’re invited to attend a public open house to learn about the Waukegan Unified Development Ordinance. The first event will take place at City Hall on March 7, 2024, from 4pm to 7:30pm (100 N. Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue). The second event take place at the Waukegan Park District Field House (800 Baldwin Avenue) on March 19, 2024, from 6:30pm to 8:30pm. The Unified Development Ordinance (UDO) will modernize the current land use and zoning ordinances with changes to signs, landscaping, parking, and more. Please attend to learn more about how the changes will impact you and provide feedback to help shape the future of Waukegan.

    Please visit the project page for more information: https://engage.cmap.illinois.gov/waukeganudo


  • Benefits of Trees Presentation - Nov 9!

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    You're invited to attend a public presentation about the benefit of trees at City Hall on November 9, 2023 at 5:30 pm (100 N. Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue). Zach Wirtz, Community Manager for the Chicago Region Trees Initiative at the Morton Arboretum, and Natalie Burgos, Outreach Assistant for the Chicago Region Trees Initiative at the Morton Arboretum, will be giving a presentation on the benefit of trees in community infrastructure. Following the presentation, there will be a Q/A with the guest speakers.

  • Off-Street Parking Reform Presentation - August 24

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    You're invited to attend a public presentation about off-street parking at City Hall on August 24, 2023 at 6:00 pm (100 N. Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue). The Unified Development Ordinance (UDO) will modernize the current land use and zoning ordinances, including changes to off-street parking requirements. Linday Bayley, Program Lead for Safe and Complete Streets at CMAP and the Co-Founder of the Parking Reform Network, will present information about the role of parking, potential changes, and what that means for Waukegan.

  • Project Updates and Highlights

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    June 3, 2024: Presentation of the new UDO before the Waukegan Community Development Committee

    May 9, 2024: Presentation of the new UDO before hte Waukegan Planning & Zoning Commission

    March 19, 2024: UDO public open house event at the Waukegan Park District Field House

    March 7, 2024: UDO public open house event at City Hall

    November 9, 2023: Special presentation on the benefits of trees.

    August 24, 2023: Special presentation on off-street parking reform.

    January 12, 2023: The UDO team presented the draft Recommendations Memo to the Planning and Zoning Commission.

    November 16, 2022: The UDO team visits more than 30 business and community organizations in downtown Waukegan and along Grand Avenue to spread awareness about the projects, potential impacts to local business owners, and collect input.

    July 8, 2022: The UDO project team attends Scoop Waukegan to get the word out about the project and get community feedback.

    May 12, 2022: The City of Waukegan hosts a UDO outreach workshop at City Hall to get feedback from residents, businesses, and community stakeholders about topics including housing diversity, landscaping, downtown, parking, and signs.

    January 20, 2022: CMAP and Waukegan staff tour the City to highlight current land use and zoning successes and challenges.

    November 1, 2021: CMAP staff introduced the project to the Waukegan City Council, discussed the direction and timeline of the project, and received initial feedback.

  • What's Your Zoning District?

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    Do you know your zoning district? Check out the online zoning map. Not only can you see what district you live in, but you can also explore the different Place Types as defined by the 2020 Waukegan Comprehensive Land Use Plan, see lot sizes, and view lots that are considered "non-conforming" based on minimum lot size. A non-conforming lot is a parcel that does not meet the minimum area as required by the current Zoning Ordinance. The new UDO will look to reduce non-conformities througout the city.

  • Join the UDO Steering Committee

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    The Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP) is working with the City of Waukegan to Develop a Unified Development Ordinance (UDO). This document updates and integrates the zoning code, landscape and tree preservation ordinance, sign ordinance, and subdivision ordinance.

    To ensure the UDO reflects the vision for the city, the project is seeking steering committee to help guide the project and conduct at least four(4) steering committee meetings. The steering committee members who will be responsible for providing project direction, reviewing key draft deliverables, assisting with outreach, and attending project meetings.

    The project team is seeking volunteers that reflect the diversity of the Waukegan community. The volunteer commitment inlcudes attending four (4) steering committee meetings, as well as assisting with outreach and attending other project meetings when available. We look forward to working with you!

    Applications will be open through June 30, 2022. To sign up, please fill out this form: https://forms.gle/hhz5wq228F57z1a28

  • Community workshop on May 12!

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    Join us for a community meeting to learn how zoning regulations impact your day-to-day life.

    Attend this public workshop to help update zoning regulations with feedback from residents, business owners, and local stakeholders. The City of Waukegan is updating its Zoning Code. This update will create a Unified Development Ordinance (UDO) that will organize and modify development regulations in Waukegan.

    Date: Thursday, May 12, 2022
    Time: 6:00 PM - 7:30 PM
    Location: Waukegan City Hall, 100 N Martin Luther King Jr. Ave.

    The workshop will be held in English and Spanish and provide supervised kids’ activities. More information about the UDO project is available at https://engage.cmap.illinois.gov/ waukeganudo Please contact Jaemi Jackson with questions about the event at jjackson@cmap.illinois.gov or 312-386-8706.

Page last updated: 17 Jun 2024, 12:43 PM