Traditional Neighborhood Development (TND)
Case Study

Dennisport Village Center
Town of Dennis, Massachusetts

The Town of Dennis recently adopted zoning bylaws to revitalize its historic village center, Dennisport, into a thriving neighborhood that meets the principles of Traditional Neighborhood Development. The Dennis Economic Development Committee promoted zoning strategies that encourage private reinvestment in Dennisport. The Dennisport Village Center bylaws aim to make Dennisport as a walkable, livable, working and shopping community by clearly delineating a village core through a historic development pattern. The bylaws allow a mix of retail, commercial, professional and upper floor residential uses on a single property combined uses that were characteristic of our centuries-old downtowns, yet made illegal by zoning bylaws introduced during the past 40 years.

3 photos of public outreach examples.

Why it works:

Local Support: The Dennis Economic Development Committee, Dennisport Revitalization Committee, Dennis Chamber of Commerce, Dennisport Business Association, Dennis Historical Society, property owners, and residents worked for nearly two years to develop a zoning by-law that provided a basic framework to revitalize the Dennisport Village Center. These entities then teamed up with the Cape Cod Business Roundtable and the Association to Preserve Cape Cod to develop a series of graphics to illustrate the visual impacts of the new by-law and proposed architectural guidelines.

Complementary Policies: The TND bylaws adopted by the Town matched the recommendations of the recently completed Dennis Comprehensive Plan. Additionally, concurrent with their development of the TND by-laws, the Town of Dennis developed a set of architectural design guidelines that, amongst other recommendations, require a variety of roof and façade designs facing Main Street.

Accessibility: The zoning policy and complimentary design guidelines create a pedestrian-friendly environment by requiring a network of walkways, public spaces and appropriate parking design.

Redevelop First: The Dennis zoning bylaws take advantage of existing structures and infrastructure by encouraging reuse of existing buildings.