Noncontiguous Cluster Development
New Jersey has long had municipal land-use tools that help to direct development to places where it makes the most sense – where it will enhance the community and where services can be provided effectively and efficiently. The state has also had ways to create parks and recreational areas, and to preserve open space, farmland and historic sites, sometimes without the use of taxpayer money. However, there have been limits on how these tools can be implemented.
In 2013 the state legislature passed an update to the cluster development provisions in New Jersey’s Municipal Land Use Law, giving municipalities greater authority to include contiguous and noncontiguous clustering and lot-size averaging in their land-use regulations. Municipalities now have the option of directing development through their existing zoning ordinances, or of offering landowners and developers additional benefits via these updated clustering opportunities. New Jersey Future and many partners were integrally involved in crafting this legislative update and working to get it passed.
Learn more about New Jersey’s updated cluster development tools:
Grant information for jurisdictions interested in implementing noncontiguous cluster development
New tool: Customizable Powerpoint presentation on noncontiguous clustering. Please note this is file has been optimized for quick download. If you are interested in a higher-resolution version, please fill out this request form and we’ll be happy to email it to you.
Webinar 1: Noncontiguous Cluster – New Jersey’s New and Improved
An Introduction for Local Officials, Planning Board Members and Interested Citizens
Presentation: Overview and examples.
Presentation: Plainsboro case study.
Webinar 2: Taking Advantage of the New and Improved
Noncontiguous Cluster Tool
Insights for Planners and Land Use Attorneys
Recording: Introduction and Resources
Downloadable presentation: Introduction
Downloadable presentation: Resources
Recording: How recent changes to MLUL affect clustering
Downloadable presentation: How recent changes to MLUL affect clustering
Downloadable presentation: Implementation
Recording: Using noncontiguous cluster to achieve preservation goals
Downloadable presentation: Using noncontiguous cluster to achieve preservation goals.
Background information on cluster development:
- How clustering works
- Presentations from New Jersey Future’s 2012 webinar, The Nuts and Bolts of Noncontiguous Clustering
- Case study report on noncontiguous cluster: Preserving Land through Market Real Estate Transactions
- Final report of the New Jersey Future Transfer of Development Rights Task Force
- New Jersey Department of Agriculture: Agricultural Smart Growth Plan for New Jersey (2006)
- Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission: Municipal Implementation Tool #23: Land Preservation Through Noncontiguous Parcel Clustering in New Jersey (2012)