About the Project 


Chatham County is undertaking Recode Chatham, a project to rewrite its land-use regulations that include zoning and subdivison regulations based on the policy direction in the Plan Chatham Comprehensive Plan, adopted in 2017. The project will result in a new Unified Development Ordinance (UDO) that serves as the primary regulatory document guiding all development and land use within the county.


The UDO will be a user-friendly document for residents, elected officials, appointed boards, and the development community, with a streamlined development review process tailored uniquely to Chatham County. The goal is that the UDO will develop clear procedures and guidelines that are simple, flexible, and easily administered.



There are many ways to learn about Recode Chatham and to provide your input.

  • Sign up to receive project updates so that you always have the latest information.

  • Attend public events.

  • Review draft material and provide your comments. 


All interested parties are encouraged to participate in Recode Chatham, because the project will be most successful with input from a broad cross section of the community. To sign up to receive project updates, input your information below.

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News & Updates

UDO Stage 3: Drafting is Underway

August 2022

On June 6, 2022, the consultant team met with the Board of Commissioners to provide a project update and discuss development principles and policies for the County’s rural and agricultural areas. Through a lens of character, capacity, and economy, the Commissioners discussed three key tools for regulating development—density, subdivision, and land use. The meeting presentation and video are available online.


The consultant team recently completed a draft Annotated Outline of the UDO, which establishes the overall structure of the document and indicates where the current development-related regulations will be incorporated into the UDO. Based on input from staff and the Planning Board UDO Subcommittee, the consultant team will finalize the Annotated Outline in the coming weeks. Once finalized, the Outline will be posted on the project website under the Documents & Work Products tab.


The Planning Board UDO Subcommittee will meet periodically to review and provide feedback on drafts of the UDO. Meeting agendas and minutes are available online. While their meetings are open to the public, the UDO Subcommittee typically will not directly receive public input. The consultant team will conduct workshops at several points during the drafting stage to receive input from the community.

UDO Drafting Kick-Off / Moncure Megasite

May 2022

The Board of Commissioners will meet in a work session on June 6th at 1:00pm in the Historic Courthouse located in Pittsboro to discuss the UDO and provide direction on specific topics outlined in the Recode Chatham audit. 


The Board also will discuss incorporating considerations of the Moncure Megasite into the UDO and the initiation of a countywide planning process focusing on the site.


The consultants will incorporate the Board's feedback as they begin UDO Stage 3: Drafting and the assessment phase of Megasite planning effort.

Moncure Megasite and the UDO

May 2022

On March 29th, Governor Roy Cooper announced that automaker VinFast selected Chatham County as the location of its first North American assembly plant for its electronic vehicles.  The plant is planned for development at the Moncure Megasite in Southeastern Chatham County.


In anticipation of this historic project, the County is initiating a wide-ranging planning effort to assess countywide impacts of the project, to prepare an action plan to address those impacts, and to develop an area plan for the County lands expected to be most directly impacted by development of the Moncure Megasite site.

Board of Commissioners Review Code Audit

April  2022

On April 4, Tyson Smith and Kelly Cousino presented the draft Code Audit to the Board of Commissioners for its consideration and its feedback on the report.  The Board also received initial public input on the UDO Code Audit and UDO rewrite project.  The Consultant Team now will finalize the Code Audit and post it to “Documents and Work Products” tab above.  The Audit serves as a guide to the development of the County’s new Unified Development Ordinance. 

Code Audit Available for Public Review and Comment

March  2022

The public review draft of the Recode Audit is available under the “Documents & Work Products” tab above.  


The Audit serves as the “plan” for preparing draft revisions to the County’s land use codes during the Recode process.  It reflects the extensive feedback already received from the Board of Commissioners, Planning Board, County staff, and County advisory boards and committees.


The Audit will be presented at the Board of Commissioners meeting on April 4th, starting at 6 PM.  Public comment will be received.

Draft Code Audit Under Review

March  2022

The consultants have provided a preliminary draft assessment of the County’s current land use codes, which staff is reviewing now.  


Following staff review, a draft of the audit will be presented to the Board of Commissioners at its 6:00 meeting on April 4th.   Public comment will be received at this meeting as well, to ensure a complete inventory of issues to be addressed during the recode process.


The draft audit will be posted under the “Documents and Work Products” tab above prior to the April 4th meeting. 

The Code Audit is Underway

February 2022

County Staff has reviewed the consultant's initial versions of the UDO Code Audit, in the form of a stakeholder "Issues Identification Summary."  The consulting Team is now putting the formal Audit together with completion expected next month.   

Stage Two is Underway

January 2022

Having completed Phase One’s listening sessions in December, the Team has begun developing the UDO "Code Audit," which will identify the subject areas to be revisited during the recode process, based on feedback received during Phase One.  In coordination with County staff, the Consultant Team is working on initial drafts of the Audit and we anticipate an update on our progress in a few weeks.

Stage One Nears Completion

December 2021

The Board of Commissioners will meet in a work session on December 8th to complete Stage One of Recode Chatham, Project Orientation.


Stage One’s listening sessions will be followed by preparation of a Code Audit and Drafting Blueprint, which summarize input received during the Project Orientation, as well as our Team’s assessment of code revisions to implement Plan Chatham's recommendations and initial guidance from the Board.

Recode Chatham

Website Launch 

November 2021

The project website has launched! Check back here for information about the project including upcoming meetings and events! 

Recode Chatham
Project Kickoff
October 2021


The first phase of the project will include document review and a series of meetings with County Boards and Committees. Check out this page for more info. 

Recode Chatham Consultant Selection
February 2021
The County selected a dynamic team of consultants led by White & Smith Planning and Law Group that includes Clarion Associates, Green Heron Planning, Tetra Tech, and Nealon Planning.