Special uses may be granted in a zone district either administratively or through a public hearing process. Each zone district lists both permitted uses and special uses.
Permitted uses are allowed uses by right. Special uses are intended to fill a particular void. For example, one of the special uses listed in the R-1 zone district is a bed and breakfast facility. An auto sales lot is an example of a C-1 special use. Approval of a special use is dependent on compatibility with surrounding uses, design of the property, and operation and management of the use.
Special use approvals can be vested with the land in perpetuity, can be granted only to the applicant, or can be for a specific period of time. Obtaining a special use approval can take as little as two months or as long as four months depending on the nature of the request and whether an administrative approval occurs. A site plan for the property may be required with a special use application. This is usually based on the nature of the request as determined by the development review team.