Design Elements

Good design is essential for the creation of successful conservation subdivision developments. To aid municipalities in assessing the design of proposed subdivisions and in crafting their ordinances to promote good design, the Chester County Planning Commission identified a number of Design Elements that are important in ensuring development proposals meet the spirit of the ordinance and result in a high-quality and liveable community. The Design Elements are described in this section, and each includes ordinance considerations, sample ordinance language, and examples of local conservation subdivisions where the Design Element has been used successfully.

By definition, conservation subdivisions prioritize the vitality of the development's open space and the preservation of the site's natural resources. Aside from this, some Design Elements may be more important than others depending on the municipality's goals and the developer's vision. Whatever the goals for the site, municipalities should ensure their regulations are specific enough to achieve the intent of the ordinance and flexible enough for the site design to be customized to best take advantage of its existing features.