Chapter 17.20
ZONING MAP

Sections:

17.20.010    Purpose.

17.20.020    Zoning map and zoning districts.

17.20.030    Purposes of the zoning districts.

17.20.010 Purpose.

This chapter establishes the zoning districts applied to property within the city and adopts the city’s zoning map. (Ord. 766 § 2 Exh. A (part), 2004).

17.20.020 Zoning map and zoning districts.

The council adopts the city of Cotati zoning map (hereafter referred to as the “zoning map”), which is on file with the department. The zoning map is incorporated into this land use code by reference as though it were fully included in this chapter.

A. Zoning Districts Established. The city of Cotati shall be divided into zoning districts that implement the Cotati general plan. The zoning districts shown in Table 2-1 are hereby established, and shall be shown on the zoning map.

B. Purpose of Zoning Districts. The zoning districts of this land use code provide standards that determine the type of development allowed in each zone.

1. The zoning districts have been designed to express a transect, or continuum of population density and building intensity that ranges from the most rural to the most urban physical conditions within the city of Cotati. This transect of zones enables this land use code to allocate building types, street types, and other aspects of urban design, development, and land use to the zones that are most appropriate for them based on their density and intensity.

2. The majority of zones provided in this chapter are intended to accommodate a diverse mixture of land uses and housing types, with the particular mix allowed in each zone being based on the relative position of the zone within the rural-to-urban transect (Table 2-1 shows the position of each zone within the transect).

3. The zones provided by Table 2-1 also include several districts, which are intended to be applied to areas of the city that have more limited purposes than the other mixed use zones, and focus on a more limited range of land use types (for example, industrial uses).

C. Interpretation of Zoning District Boundaries. If there is uncertainty about the location of any zoning district boundary shown on the official zoning map, the location of the boundary shall be determined by the director as follows:

1. Where zoning district boundaries approximately follow lot, alley, or street lines, the lot lines and street and alley centerlines shall be construed as the district boundaries;

2. If a zoning district boundary divides a parcel and the boundary line location is not specified by distances printed on the zoning map, the location of the boundary will be determined by using the scale appearing on the zoning map; and

3. Where a public street or alley is officially vacated or abandoned, the property that was in the street or alley will be included within the zoning district of the adjoining property on either side of the street or alley.

 

Table 2-1

Zoning Districts 

Zoning Map Symbol

Name of Zoning District

General Plan Designation Implemented by Zoning District

Location within Transect

Low Density and Neighborhood Zones

OSC

Open Space, Conservation

Open Space

MORE RURAL

OSR

Open Space, Recreation

Parks

RR

Rural Residential

Rural

RVL

Residential Very Low Density

Low Density Residential

NL

Neighborhood, Low Density

Low-Medium Density Residential

NM

Neighborhood, Medium Density

Medium Density Residential

TO

NU

Neighborhood, Urban

High Density Residential

Mixed Use Corridor and Downtown Zones

CE

Commercial, East Cotati Ave. Corridor

Office, General Commercial

CG

Commercial, Gravenstein Corridor

Highway Commercial, General Commercial

CA

Commerce Avenue

Downtown Specific Plan

NG

Northern Gateway

Downtown Specific Plan

CD

Downtown Commercial

General Commercial, La Plaza Specific Plan

HC

Historic Core

Downtown Specific Plan

LP

La Plaza

Downtown Specific Plan

MORE URBAN

Districts

 

CI

Commercial/ Industrial District

Commercial/ Industrial

 

IG

General Industrial District

General Industrial

 

Special Purpose and Overlay Zones

 

CP

Coordinated Planning Overlay

All

 

MHP

Mobilehome Park Overlay

All Residential

 

PF

Public Facility

Public Facilities

 

SPSW

Specific Plan, Santero Way

All

 

SPD

Specific Plan, Downtown

General Commercial, Low Density Residential, Parks

 

(Ord. 895 § 2(A) Exh. 2 (part), 2020: Ord. 823 § 2(C) Exh. C (part), 2009; Ord. 766 § 2 Exh. A (part), 2004).

17.20.030 Purposes of the zoning districts.

The purposes of the individual zoning districts and the manner in which they are applied are as follows:

A. Low Density and Neighborhood Zones.

1. OSC (Open Space, Conservation) Zoning District. The OSC zoning district is applied to properties that have been designated for the preservation of natural and scenic resources and a distinct community identity. Development is limited to structures that support the open space features being conserved, and caretaker quarters. The OSC zoning district is consistent with and implements the open space land use designation of the general plan.

2. OSR (Open Space, Recreation) Zoning District. The OSR zoning district is applied to land in public ownership that is either used or intended for community recreational purposes, and areas of important aesthetic, historical, or public health and safety significance. Appropriate uses include park, recreational, and cultural facilities. The OSR zoning district implements and is consistent with the parks land use designation of the general plan.

3. RR (Rural Residential) Zoning District. The RR district is applied to areas appropriate for agricultural uses such as orchards and vineyards, grazing, and low density residential uses, where proposed development and agricultural uses maintain existing natural vegetation and topography to the maximum extent feasible. The maximum allowable density ranges from one dwelling unit per one and one-half acres, to one unit per acre, with the specific allowable density for each parcel shown on the zoning map by a numerical suffix to the RR map symbol (see Section 17.24.020, Zoning district subdivision and density standards) of this title. The allowable intensity of nonresidential land uses is determined by Section 17.24.030 (Zoning district site planning and building standards). The RR zoning district is consistent with and implements the rural land use designation of the general plan.

4. RVL (Residential Very Low Density) Zoning District. The RVL zoning district is applied to areas appropriate for low density areas of detached single-family homes. The maximum allowable density ranges from one dwelling unit per 0.66 acres, to one unit per one-half acre, with the specific allowable density for each parcel shown on the zoning map by a numerical suffix to the RVL map symbol (see Section 17.24.020, Zoning district subdivision and density standards) of this title. The allowable intensity of nonresidential land uses is determined by Section 17.24.030 (Zoning district site planning and building standards). The RVL zoning district is consistent with and implements the low density residential land use designation of the general plan.

5. NL (Neighborhood, Low Density) Zoning District. The NL zoning district is applied to areas developed with and appropriate for neighborhoods of detached and attached single-family homes, and duplexes, including limited neighborhood retail uses and related, compatible uses. The maximum allowable density is six dwelling units per acre. The allowable intensity of nonresidential land uses is determined by Section 17.24.030 (Zoning district site planning and building standards) of this title. The NL zoning district is consistent with and implements the low-medium density land use designation of the general plan.

6. NM (Neighborhood, Medium Density) Zoning District. The NM zoning district is applied to areas appropriate for a variety of housing types, including small lot single-family housing, and various types of multifamily housing (for example, duplexes, townhouses, and apartments), limited neighborhood retail uses, and related, compatible uses. The maximum allowable density is ten dwelling units per acre. The allowable intensity of non-residential land uses is determined by Section 17.24.030 (Zoning district site planning and building standards) of this title. The NM zoning district is consistent with and implements the medium density residential land use designation of the general plan.

7. NU (Neighborhood, Urban) Zoning District. The NU zoning district is applied to areas appropriate for a variety of higher-density housing types, including all types of multifamily housing, neighborhood serving commercial uses, and related compatible uses. The maximum allowable density is fifteen dwelling units per acre. The allowable intensity of nonresidential land uses is determined by Section 17.24.030 (Zoning district site planning and building standards) of this title for the applicable zoning district. The allowable intensity of nonresidential land uses is determined by Section 17.24.030 (Zoning district site planning and building standards). The NU zoning district is consistent with and implements the high density residential land use designation of the general plan.

B. Mixed Use Corridor and Downtown Zones.

1. CE (Commercial, East Cotati Avenue Corridor) Zoning District. The CE zoning district is a mixed use classification that is applied to specific parcels on both sides of East Cotati Avenue, from Arthur Street east to the city limits. The corridor is appropriate for a wide range of retail and service land uses that primarily serve local residents and businesses, including offices, shops, personal and business services, and small-scale restaurants, where structures fronting East Cotati Avenue are generally two stories. Residential uses may also be accommodated as part of mixed use projects, at a maximum density of fifteen dwelling units per acre. The allowable intensity of nonresidential development is determined by Section 17.24.030 (Zoning district site planning and building standards) of this title. The CE zoning district is consistent with and implements the office, and general commercial land use designations of the general plan.

2. CG (Commercial, Gravenstein Corridor) Zoning District. The CG zoning district is a mixed use classification that is applied to both sides of the Gravenstein Highway from Highway 101, west to the city limits. The corridor is appropriate for a wide range of retail and service land uses that serve both the local population and regional markets, including retail uses and restaurants, with additional uses such as personal and business services, and offices limited to the second floor along the Gravenstein frontage, where structures fronting Gravenstein are generally two stories. Residential uses may also be accommodated as part of mixed use projects, at a maximum density of fifteen dwelling units per acre. The allowable intensity of nonresidential development is determined by Section 17.24.030 (Zoning district site planning and building standards) of this title. The CG zoning district is consistent with and implements the general commercial land use designations of the general plan.

3. CD (Downtown Commercial) Zoning District. The CD zoning district is applied to the downtown area of Cotati, encompassing the historic plaza area, and extending south along Old Redwood Highway to Page Street, and north to Highway 101, including properties along Commerce Avenue. The CD zoning district is appropriate for a wide variety of land uses, with retail and other pedestrian-oriented uses on the ground floors of street fronting structures, and residential units or offices allowed on second or third floors, at a maximum density of fifteen dwelling units per acre. Street fronting structures are generally two stories. The allowable intensity of non-residential development is determined by Section 17.24.030 (Zoning district site planning and building standards) of this title. The CD zoning district is consistent with and implements the general commercial land use designation of the general plan, and the La Plaza specific plan.

C. Districts.

1. CI (Commercial/Industrial District) Zoning District. The CI zoning district is applied to areas appropriate for a mixture of retail, service, large-scale office, light industry uses, warehousing and live/work units. The allowable intensity of development is determined by Section 17.24.030 (Zoning district site planning and building standards). The CI zoning district is consistent with and implements the commercial/industrial land use designation of the general plan.

2. IG (General Industrial District) Zoning District. The IG zoning district is applied to areas appropriate for a wider variety of land uses that are more land-intensive manufacturing uses than allowed in the CI district. These include manufacturing, warehousing, assembly, and live/work units. The allowable intensity of development is determined by Section 17.24.030 (Zoning district site planning and building standards) of this title. The IG zoning district is consistent with and implements the general industrial land use designation of the general plan.

D. Downtown Specific Plan Districts.

1. Historic Core (HC). The historic core district includes the portions of the Cotati downtown located south of La Plaza along both sides of Old Redwood Highway to the southern plan boundary. This area is intended to maintain its smaller scale pedestrian orientation, with building facades located primarily at the back of the public sidewalk. The historic character of existing buildings is to be preserved, and new buildings are to be designed to be compatible with the historic character. Allowable land uses include ground floor commercial facing Old Redwood Highway. Office and residential uses may be permitted above or on the ground floor on other streets as shown in the regulating plan and consistent with the city of Cotati zoning code. Facade renovation and/or restoration is encouraged. The HC district is subject to the applicable historic code regulations of the city’s land use codes.

2. La Plaza (LP). The La Plaza district includes the historic La Plaza Park, and properties along La Plaza Street surrounding the original park site. Policies and programs related to restoration and enhancement of the park facilities are included in the specific plan. Properties around the park are intended to provide for small-scale ground floor retail with some office and restaurant uses that are highly compatible with the residential above, emphasizing opportunities for business operators to live above their workspaces. Buildings are intended to emphasize small-scale ground floor pedestrian oriented storefronts or frontages, with upper floor office or residential uses. The LP district is subject to the applicable regulations of the city’s land use codes.

3. Northern Gateway (NG). The northern gateway district includes properties on both sides of Old Redwood Highway north of the La Plaza district to the southern boundary of the Commerce Avenue district. This area is intended for a new mixed-use core, accommodating a wide variety of retail, restaurants and entertainment uses, with offices and primarily residential above. Buildings are intended to emphasize ground floor pedestrian-oriented storefronts, with upper floor office or residential uses. The NG district is subject to the applicable regulations of the city’s land use codes.

4. Commerce Avenue (CA). The Commerce Avenue district includes properties on the east side of Old Redwood Highway across from the Highway 101 right-of-way and up to the north city limits adjacent to the entrance to Highway 101. This area is intended to accommodate a variety of land use types ranging from automobile-oriented uses that serve the traveling public, to retail, office and residential uses. These regulations are intended to encourage pedestrian-oriented site and building design, but the area can also accommodate automobile-oriented development. The CA district is subject to the applicable regulations of the city’s land use codes.

E. Special Purpose and Overlay Zones. See Chapter 17.28 (Special Purpose Zones and Overlay Zone Standards) of this title. (Ord. 906 § 5, 2021; Ord. 895 § 2(A) Exh. 2 (part), 2020: Ord. 766 § 2 Exh. A (part), 2004).