Programs

Neighborhood Development Areas

Shelburne, Vermont Neighborhood
Shelburne, Vermont Neighborhood
Since the 1970s the state has promoted development policies and programs that maintain and enhance Vermont’s historic development pattern of compact centers surrounded by a rural landscape.

New Town Centers

New Town Center photoFor municipalities that lack a historic downtown, Vermont statute 24 V.S.A § 2793b provides the option of designating a New Town Center. Designation requirements focus on planning, capital expenditures, and regulatory tools that promote a pedestrian-oriented development pattern similar to our historic downtowns. 

Growth Centers

Bennington, Vermont
Bennington, Vermont
Growth centers aim to align public infrastructure and private building investments with a local framework of policies and regulations to ensure that 20 years of future development will enhance the vitality of the designated commercial center, while protecting farm and forest land outside the growth center.

Downtowns

Downtown Barre, Vermont
Downtown Barre, Vermont
This community revitalization program helps to preserve the historic character and enhance the future of medium to large-sized historic centers.

Vermont Downtown Action Team (V-DAT)

Eight historic downtowns in Vermont, turned massive flooding into opportunities to improve their physical design, hone their marketing messages, and strengthen partnerships to achieve greater economic resilience and build back stronger than before the flood.

Vermont Village Greens Initiative

Craftsbury Village Green
Craftsbury Village Green
The Vermont Village Greens Initiative is restoring appreciation for village greens and raising awareness about the important cultural and economic role they play. Vermont’s village greens (and commons) serve as the physical, historic and cultural heart of many communities, hosting concerts, fairs, parades, seasonal festivals and farmers markets.

Planning Your Town’s Future

Vermont's distinctive sense of place is tied to its primary land use planning goal: to plan development so as to maintain the historic settlement pattern of compact village and urban centers separated by rural countryside. Through collaboration with our partners the Department works to further these land use goals by developing programs that provide communities with needed tools and resources. Below are some of the programs and guidance that can help communities integrate land use planning with energy, housing, economic development and transportation options. 

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