Working for Smart Growth:
More Livable Places and Open Spaces


Noncontiguous Cluster Development

Farmland in N. Hanover. Photo: Nicole Heater

Farmland in N. Hanover. Photo: Nicole Heater

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:

Customizable Powerpoint presentation on noncontiguous clustering
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Webinar 1: Noncontiguous Cluster – New Jersey’s New and Improved
Planning Tool

An Introduction for Local Officials, Planning Board Members and Interested Citizens
Webinar recording.
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
Recording: Implementation
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:

Overview of cluster development and the legislation



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