Transfer of Development Rights Help On the Way


For many years, localities were without authority to adopt a TDR ordinance. The Attorney General made clear that while a TDR program might be constitutional, a statute would have to be adopted to authorize a locality to adopt a TDR ordinance. Opinion to the Honorable Robert T. Andrews, 1985-86 Va. A.G. op. 112.

In 2006, such statutes were adopted. 2006 Acts of Assembly ch. 573. However, the authority was little utilized in part because of the requirement that the severence of the development rights and the attachment of the development rights occur simultaneously. In 2009, this was addressed and other changes made to the statutes with an intent to make them more attractive to local governments and landowners. 2009 Acts of Assembly ch. 413. That statutory amendment took effect July 1, 2009.

For the last few months, a workgroup made up of representatives from local governments, realtors, homebuilders, agriculture and environmental groups has met at the Virginia Association of Counties Office on Richmond’s Main Street with one goal: To make it easier to implement Transfer of Development Rights (TDRs) in Virginia.

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