Planning & Development

Zoning Regulations

The Unified Development Chapter (UDC) is the official body of rules and regulations to guide land use and development in the City of Duluth. It contains the city's zoning and subdivision regulations. If you need help interpreting the UDC, please contact the City of Duluth’s One Stop Shop at 218-730-5240 (Room 100 of City Hall) or email

The January 2020 Unified Development Chapter (438 pages, 41 mb) can be downloaded in one large Adobe Acrobat (.pdf) file, including all zoning maps (separate link to web based map), or individual sections of the text and maps can be downloaded as individual .pdfs below. The UDC posted below is current, and includes the amending ordinances that were adopted, effective January 2020, and updated in June 2020 to reflect Ordinance 10698 related to Vacation Rental Homes.

Article 1: General Provisions 

(Sections 50-1 to 50-12)   

Article 2: Zone Districts  

(Sections 50-13 to 50-18) Includes information on zone district minimum requirements (such as lot area and frontage), flood plains and flood hazard management, shoreland, stormwater, and overlay districts (natural resources, historic, airport, skyline, and higher education).


Article 3: Permitted Uses 

(Sections 50-19 to 50-20) Includes a table of uses to determine where certain land uses are allowed, whether the use is allowed without special approvals (permitted use), after having obtained a Special Use Permit (special use), after having obtained an Interim Use Permit (interim use), or if the use is a use only allowed as an accessory to a principal use (accessory use) or temporary use.  Use specific standards are given after the use table to describe special conditions apply to certain uses.

Article 4: Development Standards  

(Sections 50-21 to 50-34) Includes information on form districts, site connectivity, parking, landscaping, screening, signs, sustainability, building design standards, exterior lighting, plat design, and maintenance and operating standards.

Article 5: Administration & Procedures

(Sections 50-35 to 50-39)  Includes information on review and approval processes, treatment of uses, buildings, and lots that were legal before an amendment to the UDC made them nonconforming with the new rules, and enforcement procedures and penalties.

Article 6: Definitions

(Sections 50-40 to 50-41)  Includes definitions of terms used in the UDC.


Proposed or Approved UDC Amending Ordinances

  • None at this time (July 2020). Most recent ordinance approved was 10698, related to Vacation Rental Homes.


UDC Interpretations

In accordance with Section 50-10, the Land Use Supervisor is authorized to interpret provisions of the UDC, including uses not already classified as well as any provisions that may be ambiguous. These interpretations are an interim step until the City Council can officially amend the UDC.  Below are the interpretations made since the last UDC update:

Regulating and District Plans

Sites zoned Residential-Planned (R-P) and Mixed Use-Planned (MU-P) are required to have a regulating plan to govern land uses and development of their specific area.  Below are recent regulating plans.