Planning & Zoning
Thinking about solar?
On February 11, 2020 the St. Joseph County Council approved a forward-thinking ordinance to make it easier to develop solar and requires it to be done in a way that benefits the agricultural areas of the County. St. Joseph County is the first county in Indiana and one of the first counties in the United States to require pollinator-friendly solar. Pollinator-friendly solar has many benefits to the County by reducing soil erosion, reintroducing nutrients into the soil, creating habitat for pollinators and wildlife, and makes them aesthetically pleasing.
By introducing these regulations into our zoning ordinance, making solar easier to develop, and requiring pollinator-friendly solar, St. Joseph County will achieve Gold, the highest ranking, in the US Department of Energy SolSmart program. This will let solar developers across the country know St. Joseph County is one of the best places in the nation to develop solar. Small-scale residential and commercial solar is now substantially easier to implement allowing projects large or small to become a reality.
Interested in solar? The regulations can be found in the Zoning Ordinance. MACOG was a major partner in the development of these regulations and they have great resources that can be found on their MACOG Solar Energy Resources page.
Agendas & Minutes
Area Plan Commission Responsibilities
|Comprehensive Planning: Comprehensive land use planning takes on many forms, from community-wide to corridor and area-specific plans, which include the comprehensive plans of the member jurisdictions.|
Zoning: The Commission administers the rezoning process, from the initial contact with the developer or property owner, and through the public process. The Commission, after a public hearing, provides the respective councils a recommendation on the zoning change. The Commission is also responsible for the maintenance of the official zoning maps.
Subdivisions: The Commission has exclusive control over the subdivision of land within the member jurisdictions, and has delegated that authority to a Plat Committee. Please see subdivision process for more information.
Other Activities: The Commission is also responsible for preparing text and map amendments to the zoning and subdivision ordinances. Amendments are carefully reviewed with the councils and local agencies before being introduced. The Commission staff sits on a number of committees and provides assistance to its member jurisdictions on a wide variety of land use issues.
The Area Plan Commission serves the following jurisdictions:
** Does not serve: City of Mishawaka, City of South Bend, Town of Indian Village, or Town of Walkerton