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ORDINANCE NO. 2023-6 –  FIRST PUBLICATION

CITY OF CAMBRIDGE

In the Year Two Thousand and Twenty-Three

AN ORDINANCE

In amendment to the Ordinance entitled “Cambridge Municipal Code”

That the Municipal Code of the City of Cambridge be amended in Chapter 5.50 entitled “CANNABIS BUSINESS PERMITTING” as follows:

Sections: 

5.50.010 Purpose.

This ordinance is intended to create a separate local permitting requirement for Cannabis Retail Store, Cannabis Cultivator, Cannabis Product Manufacturer, Cannabis Microbusiness, Cannabis Courier Establishment, Cannabis Delivery Operator Establishment, or any other Cannabis Business as defined herein (collectively “Cannabis Business”) applicants to certify compliance with certain conditions in the public interest prior to being permitted to operate a Cannabis Business in the City. The City deems it to be in the public interest to give initial permitting preferences for Cannabis Businesses to Priority A Applicants, as defined herein. 

( Ord. No. 2021-19 , 9-13-2021; Ord. No. 1409 , 9-23-19)

5.50.020. Definitions.

“Cannabis Business.” A Cannabis Retail Store, Cannabis Cultivator, Cannabis Product Manufacturer, Cannabis Microbusiness, Cannabis Courier Establishment, Cannabis Delivery Operator Establishment, or any other entity licensed by the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission to produce, transport or sell marijuana in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. 

“Cannabis Cultivator.” An entity licensed by the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission as a Marijuana Cultivator to cultivate, process and package cannabis or marijuana, and to transfer cannabis or marijuana to other cannabis or marijuana establishments, but not to consumers. A craft marijuana cooperative is a type if Marijuana Cultivator, pursuant to 935 CMR 500.000. 

“Cannabis Product Manufacturer.” An entity licensed by the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission as a Marijuana Product Manufacturer to obtain, manufacture, process and package cannabis or marijuana products and to transfer these products to other cannabis or marijuana establishments, but not to consumers. 

“Cannabis Retail Store.” An establishment authorized to sell or otherwise transfer cannabis or marijuana products to consumers for use off the premises, but not to cultivate, manufacture, process, or package cannabis or marijuana products, in accordance with applicable state laws and regulations. A Cannabis Retail Store may be licensed to operate as a Cannabis or Marijuana Retailer or registered as a Medical Marijuana Treatment Center, formerly known as a Registered Marijuana Dispensary (RMD) (hereafter “MTC”), or both, in accordance with applicable state laws and regulations. 

“Cannabis Courier Establishment.” An establishment licensed as a Marijuana Courier by the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission that is authorized to operate pursuant to that license, including to deliver cannabis or marijuana products, accessories and branded goods from a Cannabis Retail Store to consumers, in accordance with applicable state laws and regulations, but not authorized to sell cannabis or marijuana products directly to consumers. 

“Cannabis Transporter.” An entity, not otherwise licensed by the Cannabis Control Commission, that is licensed to purchase, obtain, and possess cannabis or marijuana, or cannabis or marijuana products, solely for the purpose of transporting, temporarily storing, selling and distributing them to cannabis establishments, not for selling to consumers. Local Sales Taxes. Taxes imposed by the City upon the sale or transfer of marijuana or marijuana products by a Cannabis Retail Store pursuant to Section 3 of M.G.L. Chapter 64N.” 

“Cannabis Delivery Operator Establishment.” An establishment licensed as a Marijuana Delivery Operator by the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission and authorized to purchase at wholesale and warehouse on the site cannabis or marijuana products acquired from a Cannabis Cultivator, Cannabis Product Manufacturer, Cannabis Microbusiness or Craft Marijuana Cooperative, and to sell and deliver cannabis or marijuana products, accessories and branded goods directly to consumers in accordance with applicable state laws and regulations, but not authorized to repackage cannabis or marijuana products or to sell cannabis or marijuana products to consumers on-site. 

“Cannabis Microbusiness.” A co-located Cannabis or Marijuana Establishment that can be either a Tier 1 Marijuana Cultivator or a Product Manufacturer or both, pursuant to 935 CMR 500.00, in compliance with the operating procedures for each license and, if in receipt of a Delivery Endorsement issued by the Cannabis Control Commission, may deliver Cannabis or Cannabis Products produced at the licensed location directly to Consumers in compliance with established regulatory requirements for retail sale as it relates to delivery. A Microbusiness that is a Cannabis Marijuana Product Manufacturer may purchase no more than 2,000 pounds of marijuana per year from other Cannabis or Marijuana Establishments, pursuant to 935 CMR 500.000. 

“Priority Applicant.” A person, corporation, or other legal entity applying for a Cannabis Business permit pursuant to this Chapter to operate in the City who is: 

A. Group A Priority Applicant. An Economic Empowerment Applicant certified as such by the Commonwealth’s Cannabis Control Commission; or a Social Equity Program Applicant certified as such by the Commonwealth’s Cannabis Control Commission; or Women or Minority Owned business as certified by the Commonwealth and /or by the City; or a Cambridge resident for at least the three previous years prior to application earning less than fifty percent (50%) of Area Median Income (AMI) in the three previous tax years prior to application —to be known as Group A Priority Applicants. 

B. Group B Priority Applicant. A MTC within the City that was licensed or registered by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health not later than July 1, 2017 to sell cannabis products in a Cannabis Retail Store pursuant to the Commonwealth’s medical use of marijuana laws, which seeks to operate as a licensed marijuana retailer pursuant to the Commonwealth’s adult use of marijuana laws – to be known as Group B Priority Applicants. Those who qualify as Group B Priority Applicants cannot also qualify as a Group A Priority Applicant. 

( Ord. No. 2021-19 , 9-13-2021; Ord. No. 1409 , 9-23-19)

5.50.030 Applicability.

This Chapter shall apply to any proposed Cannabis Business that is seeking licensure from the Cannabis Control Commission on or after the effective date of this Chapter. This Chapter shall not apply to MTCs that have already been permitted in the City and are not seeking licensure as a Cannabis Retail Store for retail cannabis sales prior to the effective date of this Chapter (“Existing MTC”). 

( Ord. No. 2021-19 , 9-13-2021; Ord. No. 1409 , 9-23-19)

5.50.040 Permitting Preferences for Priority Applicants.

The City shall issue a Cannabis Business Permit pursuant to this Chapter only to Priority Applicants. For the first five years after the Effective Date of this Chapter as stated in section 5.50.100 below, the City shall issue a Cannabis Business Permit to operate a Cannabis Retail Store only to Group A Priority Applicants. The effect of this provision is to extend the preference period for Economic Empowerment Applicants from three years to five years, and to provide a three year preference period for all other Group A Priority Applicants to run concurrently with the third, fourth and fifth years of the preference period for Economic Empowerment Applicants. 

For the first year after the expiration of the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission’s exclusivity period for Marijuana Courier Licenses and Marijuana Delivery Operator Licenses, as set forth in 935 CMR 500.050(10) and (11), the City shall issue a Cannabis Business Permit for a Cannabis Courier Establishment or Cannabis Delivery Operator Establishment only to Group A Priority Applicants. 

The Council shall review this provision of the ordinance again no later than September 1, 2022 

(Ord. No. 2022-19 , 9-19-2022; Ord. No. 2021-19 , 9-13-2021; Ord. No. 1409 , 9-23-19)

5.50.050 Permitting Requirements.

A. In order to obtain a Cannabis Business permit pursuant to this Chapter, an applicant must certify that: 

1. It will comply with employee pay standards set out in the City’s Living Wage Ordinance; 

2. It will hire at least 51% of minority, women and/or veterans as employees; 

3. If applicant has a Board of Directors, the board makeup will be at least 51% minority, women and/or veterans; 

4. It consents to unannounced, periodic compliance inspections by City officials of its Cannabis Business, including any Cannabis Business activities it conducts off-site; 

5. It will comply with all State and local laws and regulations regarding its Cannabis Business operations; 

6. No person under the minimum legal sales age shall be permitted to enter the Cannabis Business site unless such person possesses a state-issued registration card demonstrating that the person is a registered qualifying medical marijuana (cannabis) patient and the Cannabis Business site is, or is co-located with, a MTC; 

7. It will work with the Cambridge Public Health Department to create and distribute educational materials to its customers as directed by the Cambridge Public Health Department; 

8. It will sell only cannabis and cannabis accessories, and not other products, including tobacco products or alcoholic beverages of any kind; 

9. It will comply with directives of the Police Commissioner and of the Director of Traffic Parking and Transportation, or their designees, regarding traffic measures to be taken at and near the Cannabis Business site; 

10. It has received a special permit from the Planning Board for its Cannabis Business if required pursuant to the Cambridge Zoning Ordinance, and has entered into a Host Community Agreement with the City through the City Manager’s Office; and 

11. It is a business in good standing with no outstanding federal, state or local investigations or judgments pending against it. 

B. No discretionary permit conditions may be imposed by the permit issuing authority pursuant to this Chapter. 

C. A Cannabis Business permit shall be valid only for the applicant to which the Cannabis Business permit was issued, and only for the use and for the site approved in the permit. A proposed change of ownership or control that would require notification to the Cannabis Control Commission pursuant to the Adult Use of Marijuana Regulations 935 CMR 500.000, change of use, or change of site shall require a new Cannabis Business permit. As part of the Cannabis Business permit application process, the City shall require the applicant to disclose all individuals and legal entities who are a Person or Entity Having Direct Control or a Person or Entity Having Indirect Control pursuant to the Adult Use of Marijuana Regulations. 

D. A Cannabis Business that is licensed to conduct cannabis delivery shall submit an Operations and Logistics Plan for approval by the Cambridge Traffic, Parking and Transportation Department and Cambridge Police Department annually prior to issuance and renewal pursuant to Section 5.50.070 below. 

( Ord. No. 2021-19 , 9-13-2021; Ord. No. 1409 , 9-23-19)

5.50.060 Permitting Procedure.

This Chapter shall be administered by the City’s Inspectional Services Department, except that Priority Applicant status shall be certified by the Director of the Economic Opportunity and Development Division of the Community Development Department, or their designee. Applications for Cannabis Business permits shall be obtained from and submitted to the Inspectional Services Department. If permit applications are properly completed and certified, and the conditions of this Chapter are met, the Commissioner of Inspectional Services (the “Commissioner”) shall issue a Cannabis Business permit to the applicant. No public hearing process on individual applications shall be conducted. A Host Community Agreement shall be negotiated with the City Manager. 

( Ord. No. 2021-19 , 9-13-2021; Ord. No. 1409 , 9-23-19)

5.50.070 Permit Expiration and Renewal.

The Cannabis Business permit issued pursuant to this Chapter shall be subject to renewal annually. If the applicant fails to timely renew or fails to meet the requirements of this Chapter at the time of each renewal, including the Permitting Requirements in section 5.50.050 above, the Cannabis Business permit issued hereunder shall expire. A Cannabis Business permit will not be renewed if the permit holder has failed to pay all fines issued pursuant to this Chapter. 

( Ord. No. 2021-19 , 9-13-2021; Ord. No. 1409 , 9-23-19)

5.50.080 Enforcement.

A. Failure to comply with this Chapter, including a failure to maintain the status of a Priority Applicant, failure to obtain or to comply with the provisions of a Planning Board special permit if required pursuant to the Cambridge Zoning Ordinance, or State license to operate a Cannabis Business, or failure to comply with any applicable laws, may result in revocation by the City, through the Commissioner, of the Cannabis Business permit granted pursuant to this Chapter. Failure to meet the annual Cannabis Business permit renewal requirements will result in the expiration of the Cannabis Business permit. If a permit holder’s State license is revoked, then the Cannabis Business permit issued by the City shall be revoked. A Cannabis Business permit may be revoked or not renewed if the permit holder has sold a cannabis product to a person under the minimum legal sales age three times or more, or if the permit holder has failed to pay to the City all outstanding fines issued pursuant to this Chapter. 

B. An applicant must cease to operate if it does not hold and maintain a valid Cannabis Business permit pursuant to this Chapter. Prior to revoking a Cannabis Business permit issued hereunder, the Commissioner will notify the Cannabis Business permit holder in writing and allow the Cannabis Business permit holder at least fourteen (14) days to submit written information to the Commissioner establishing that the Cannabis Business permit holder is in compliance with the terms of this Chapter. The Commissioner shall make a final determination on the Cannabis Business permit expiration or revocation thereafter. If a permit holder requests, the Commissioner in his discretion may hold a hearing before deciding whether to revoke a Cannabis Business permit. 

C. Any violation of this Chapter by a permit holder shall be subject to a fine of up to $300 for each violation. Each day a violation exists shall constitute a separate violation. 

D. Fines pursuant to this Chapter may be issued pursuant to the non-criminal ticketing procedure in G.L.c.40, § 21D. The Commissioner of Inspectional Services, the Police Commissioner, and the Commissioner of Public Health, or their designees shall be the enforcement officials for this Chapter. 

( Ord. No. 2021-19 , 9-13-2021; Ord. No. 1409 , 9-23-19)

5.50.090 Regulations.

The Commissioner of Inspectional Services, as well as the Assistant City Manager for Community Development, with the approval of the City Manager, are authorized to promulgate regulations and to create the necessary application and permit forms, to implement this Chapter with respect to their respective responsibilities pursuant to this Chapter. Regulatory requirements implementing this ordinance may differ for Priority Applicants and non-Priority applicants, such that the regulatory burden for Priority Applicants is less burdensome. 

( Ord. No. 2021-19 , 9-13-2021; Ord. No. 1409 , 9-23-19)

5.50.100 Effective Date.

This Chapter shall take effect on September 23, 2019. 

( Ord. No. 2021-19 , 9-13-2021; Ord. No. 1409 , 9-23-19)

5.50.110 Severability.

The provisions of this Chapter are severable, and if any part of this Chapter should be held invalid by a court of competent jurisdiction, such invalidity shall not affect the remainder of the Chapter, and the remainder of the Chapter shall remain in full force and effect. 

( Ord. No. 2021-19 , 9-13-2021; Ord. No. 1409 , 9-23-19)

Passed to a second reading at the City Council meeting

held on October 16, 2023 and on or after November 7, 2023

the question comes on passage to be ordained.

Attest:

Diane P. LeBlanc

City Clerk


ORDINANCE NO. 2023-7 – FINAL

PUBLICATION

CITY OF CAMBRIDGE

In the Year Two Thousand and Twenty-three

AN ORDINANCE

That the Zoning Ordinance of the City of Cambridge be amended on a Zoning Petition by the Cambridge City Council to amend Article 2.000 to create definitions for “AHO Corridor” and “AHO Square”; and by amending Section 11.207 of the Zoning Ordinance to modify the height and open space standards applicable to Affordable Housing Overlay developments, among other changes.

Amend Article 2.000 as follows:

AHO Lot – A Lot, as defined in this Article 2.000, on which an AHO Project is proposed, whether or not there are other existing or proposed uses on the Lot that do not meet the definition of an AHO Project.

AHO Corridor Lot – An AHO Lot that has a Front Lot Line on one or more of the following streets: Albany Street, Alewife Brook Parkway, Bishop Allen Drive, Broadway, Cambridge Street, Concord Avenue, First Street, Fresh Pond Parkway, Massachusetts Avenue, Memorial Drive, Mount Auburn Street, Prospect Street, and Sidney Street.

AHO Square District – One of the following Zoning Districts or areas: the Central Square Overlay District, Harvard Square Overlay District, Lesley Porter Overlay District, or the area bounded by the centerline of Elm Street to the west, the Somerville/Cambridge municipal boundary to the north, the centerline of Windsor Street to the east, and Cambridge Street to the south; but not including the premises shown on Cambridge Assessor’s Map #81 Lots 81-50, 81-101, or 81-100.

Amend Section 11.207 as follows:

11.207.5.1 General Provisions

(a) For the purposes of this Section, the phrase “District Development Standards” shall refer to the development standards of the base zoning district as they may be modified by the development standards of all overlay districts (with the exception of this Affordable Housing Overlay) that are applicable to a lot.

(b) District Dimensional Standards shall include the most permissive standards allowable on a lot, whether such standards are permitted as-of-right or allowable by special permit. A District Dimensional Standard that is allowable by special permit shall include any nondiscretionary requirements or limitations that would otherwise apply.

(c) An AHO Project that conforms to the following development standards shall not be subject to other limitations that may be set forth in Article 5.000 or other Sections of this Zoning Ordinance, except as otherwise stated in this Section.

(d) Section 3.32 shall generally apply to an AHO Project where a zoning district boundary line divides the AHO Lot, except that the AHO Project may choose to apply the requirements of the zoning district that covers the majority of the AHO Lot to the entirety of the AHO Lot as if it were within a single zoning district. 

11.207.5.2.1 Building Height and Stories Above Grade. For an AHO Project, the standards set forth below shall apply in place of any building height limitations set forth in the District Development Standards.

(a) Where the District Dimensional Standards set forth a maximum residential building height of forty (40) feet or less, an AHO Project shall contain no more than four (4) Stories Above Grade and shall have a maximum height of forty-five (45) feet, as measured from existing Grade. For AHO Projects containing active non-residential uses on the ground floor, the maximum height may be increased to fifty (50) feet but the number of Stories Above Grade shall not exceed four (4) stories.

(b) Where the District Dimensional Standards set forth a maximum residential building height of more than forty (40) feet but not more than sixty-five (65) feet, an AHO Project shall contain no more than nine (9) Stories Above Grade and shall have a maximum height of one hundred (100) feet, as measured from existing Grade, except as further limited below. 

(i) Except where the AHO Project abuts a non-residential use, portions of an AHO Project that are within thirty-five (35) feet of a lot whose District Dimensional Standards allow a maximum residential building height of forty (40) feet or less shall be limited by the provisions of Paragraph (a) above.

(c) The height of an AHO Project on an AHO Corridor Lot may be increased from the height limits in Paragraphs (a) or (b) above, not to exceed twelve (12) Stories Above Grade and a building height of one hundred and forty (140) feet, subject to the limitations in Section 11.207.5.2.1(b)(i) above.

(d) Where the District Dimensional Standards set forth a maximum residential building height of more than sixty-five (65) feet, an AHO Project shall contain no more than thirteen (13) Stories Above Grade and shall have a maximum height of one hundred and fifty (150) feet, as measured from existing Grade, except as further limited below.

(i) Except where the AHO Project abuts a non-residential use, portions of an AHO Project that are within thirty-five (35) feet of a district whose District Dimensional Standards allow a maximum residential building height of forty (40) feet or less shall be reduced to a minimum of five (5) Stories Above Grade or a maximum height of sixty (60) feet, as measured from existing Grade, except that if the AHO project parcel extends into that District, then the height limitation shall only extend thirty five (35) feet from the property line.

(e) The height of an AHO Project within an AHO Square District may be increased from the height limits in Paragraphs (a) through (d) above, not to exceed fifteen (15) Stories Above Grade and a building height of one hundred and seventy (170) feet, subject to the limitations in Section 11.207.5.2.1(d)(i) above.

(f) An AHO Project may exceed the allowable height limitations of the previous paragraphs of this Section, not to exceed three additional stories and thirty-five feet (35’) of additional building height, under the following circumstances:

(i) The Residential Density limitations set forth in Section 11.207.5.2.2 will be met, or, if the AHO Project is not subject to an FAR restriction in Section 11.207.5.2.2, then the total gross floor area on the AHO Lot will not exceed 70% of the total lot area multiplied by the maximum number of stories otherwise permitted under the previous paragraphs of this Section; and

(ii) pre-existing, contiguous Green Area Open Space on the AHO Lot will be preserved or expanded, consisting of at least 5% or more of the total area of the AHO Lot; and  

(iii) the AHO Project will exceed the minimum required open space as set forth in Section 11.207.5.2.4 of this Article.

(g) If the height of an existing building on the AHO Lot, or on an abutting lot, exceeds the height limits in the previous paragraphs of this Section 11.207.5.2.1, then the height of the AHO Project may be increased, not to exceed the building height and Stories Above Grade of the existing building.

(h) Where an AHO Project has different applicable Building Height and Stories Above Grade limitations as specified in the preceding paragraphs of this Section 11.207.5.2.1, the most permissive height limitations shall control. 

(i) The Height Exceptions set forth in Section 5.23 of this Zoning Ordinance shall apply when determining the building height of an AHO Project. 

11.207.5.2.2 Residential Density

(a) Where the District Dimensional Standards establish a maximum floor area ratio (FAR) of less than 1.00, an AHO Project shall not exceed an FAR of 2.00. Otherwise, there shall be no maximum FAR for an AHO Project. 

(b) There shall be no maximum FAR for an AHO Project within an AHO Square or AHO Corridor. 

(c) There shall be no minimum lot area per dwelling unit for an AHO Project.

11.207.5.2.3 Yard Setbacks

(a) For the purpose of this Section, the applicable District Dimensional Standards shall not include yard setback requirements based on a formula calculation as provided in Section 5.24.4 of the Zoning Ordinance, but shall include non-derived minimum yard setback requirements set forth in Article 5.000 or other Sections of this Zoning Ordinance.

(b) Front Yards. An AHO Project shall have no minimum front yard setback.

(c) Side Yards. An AHO Project shall have no minimum side yard setback. 

(d) Rear Yards. An AHO Project shall have a minimum rear yard setback of fifteen (15) feet, or may be reduced to the minimum rear yard setback set forth in the District Dimensional Standards if it is less restrictive. 

(e) Projecting eaves, chimneys, bay windows, balconies, open fire escapes and like projections which do not project more than three and one-half (3.5) feet from the principal exterior wall plane, and unenclosed steps, unroofed porches and the like which do not project more than ten (10) feet beyond the line of the foundation wall and which are not over four (4) feet above Grade, may extend beyond the minimum yard setback.

(f) Bicycle parking spaces, whether short-term or long-term, and appurtenant structures such as coverings, sheds, or storage lockers may be located within a required yard setback but no closer than seven and one-half (7.5) feet to an existing principal residential structure on an abutting lot.

11.207.5.2.4Open Space

(a) Except where the District Dimensional Standards establish a less restrictive requirement or as otherwise provided below, the minimum percentage of open space to lot area for an AHO Project shall be thirty percent (30%). However, the minimum percentage of open space to lot area may be reduced to no less than fifteen percent (15%) if the AHO Project includes the preservation and protection of an existing building included on the State Register of Historic Places.

(b) The required open space shall be considered Private Open Space but shall be subject to the limitations set forth below and shall not be subject to the dimensional and other limitations set forth in Section 5.22 of this Zoning Ordinance. Private Open Space shall exclude parking and driveways for automobiles.

(c) All of the required open space that is located at grade shall meet the definition of Permeable Open Space as set forth in this Zoning Ordinance.

(d) The required open space shall be located at Grade or on porches and decks that are no higher than the floor elevation of the lowest Story Above Grade, except that up to twenty five percent (25%) of the required open space may be located at higher levels, such as balconies and decks, only if it is accessible to all occupants of the building.

(e) For the purpose of this Affordable Housing Overlay, area used for covered or uncovered bicycle parking spaces that are not contained within a building shall be considered Private Open Space.

(f) Notwithstanding the foregoing, lots consisting of five thousand (5,000) square feet or less in total lot area that directly abut a Public Open Space consisting of at least one thousand five hundred (1,500) square feet of area shall not have a minimum open space requirement under this Article.

In City Council October 16, 2023.

Ordained as amended by a yea and nay vote:-

Yeas 6; Nays 3; Absent 0.

 

Attest:

Diane P. LeBlanc, City Clerk

A true copy;

ATTEST:           

Diane P. LeBlanc, City Clerk


ORDINANCE NO. 2023-9 – FIRST PUBLICATION

CITY OF CAMBRIDGE

In the Year Two Thousand and Twenty-three

AN ORDINANCE

That the Zoning Ordinance of the City of Cambridge be amended on a Zoning Petition by the Cambridge City Council to amend Articles 2.000, 4.000, 5.000, and 23.000 of the Cambridge Zoning Ordinance for the purpose of allowing henkeeping as a permitted accessory use to principal residential (excluding transient accommodations as defined in Section 4.31.i), religious, and educational uses; with limitations and subject to regulation and permitting by the Cambridge Public Health Department.

Amendments to Article 2.000 – Definitions

Add the following definitions:

Apiary.  A location or structure on a lot containing one or more beehives and associated beekeeping equipment.

Bee.  Any life stage of the common domestic honey bee, Apis mellifera.

Bee Colony.  An aggregate of worker bees, drones, a single queen, and brood living together as one social unit.

Beekeeping.  The housing of one or more bee colonies on a lot for the purpose of collecting products including honey, beeswax, propolis, pollen, and royal jelly, and/or to support the ecological benefits of pollination.

Beehive.  A structure intended for the housing of one Bee Colony.

Chicken.  Any breed of the domestic species Gallus gallus domesticus.

Hen.  A domestic female chicken.

Hen Run or Pen.  A structure for the containment of hens that is enclosed on all sides and top by a wire mesh but is otherwise open to the air, to allow access to the outdoors while preventing contact with pests, predators, and other bird species.

Henkeeping.  The housing of female chickens (i.e., hens) on a lot.

Henhouse or Coop.  An enclosed, weather-protected structure for the shelter of hens and their nests.

Rooster.  A domestic male chicken.

Amendments to Article 4.000 – Use Regulations

Add the following paragraph “p.” to Section 4.21, Accessory Uses:

p. Henkeeping, conducted in conformance with the Standards for Urban Agriculture set forth in Article 23.000 of this Zoning Ordinance and all other applicable laws, rules, and regulations, shall be considered an allowed accessory use when conducted on the lot of and in conjunction with one of the following principal uses:  residential (Section 4.31 a.-h., excluding transient accommodations), any religious use (Section 4.33 a.), and any educational use (Section 4.33 b.).

Amendments to Article 5.000 – Dimensional Standards

Amend Section 5.22.1 to read as follows:

5.22.1 Private Open Space. Private Open Space shall be open and unobstructed to the sky, except that up to fifty (50) percent of the total Private Open Space may be Shaded Area. Trees, plantings, arbors, fences, flagpoles, sculpture, fountains and recreational and drying apparatus and similar objects shall not be considered obstructions when located within a private open space. Objects or structures intended exclusively for bicycle parking, designed and located in accordance with Section 6.100, which may be uncovered, partially covered or fully enclosed, shall not be considered obstructions provided that such objects or structures are not used for motor vehicle parking, general storage or any other use, and further provided that any such structure exceeding six feet (6’) in height conforms to the requirements for an accessory building in Section 4.21. Beehives and, apiaries, henhouses, and hen runs conforming to the Standards for Urban Agriculture in Article 23.000 of this Zoning Ordinance shall not be considered obstructions. Structures or features that are necessary for a building to comply with the Flood Resilience Standards in Section 22.80, such as stairs, ramps, or window wells, shall not be considered obstructions. To the extent permitted in this Ordinance, balconies and roof areas may also be considered as Private Open Space.

Amend Section 5.24.1 to read as follows:

5.24.1 Every part of a required yard shall be open to the sky and unobstructed, except that the following features may be located within a required yard:

(a) Awnings, arbors, fences, flagpoles, recreational, and laundry drying equipment and similar objects;

(b) Objects or structures intended exclusively for bicycle parking meeting the requirements of Article 6.000, which may be uncovered, partially covered or fully enclosed, provided that such objects or structures are not used for motor vehicle parking, general storage or any other use, and further provided that any such structure exceeding six feet (6’) in height conforms to the requirements for an accessory building in Section 4.21;

(c) Beehives, apiaries, henhouses, and hen runs conforming to the Standards for Urban Agriculture in Article 23.000 of this Zoning Ordinance shall not be considered obstructions;

(d) Objects or equipment located in a required yard that are necessary for or appurtenant to a Public Bicycle-Sharing Station;

(e) Open or lattice-enclosed fire escapes for emergency use only;

(f) Projecting eaves, chimneys, bay windows, balconies, open fire escapes and like projections which do not project more than three and one-half (3½’) feet and which are part of a building not more than thirty-five (35’) feet in height;

(g) Shade Canopies as defined in this Zoning Ordinance, provided that any Shade Canopy exceeding seven feet (7’) in height shall be set back at least five feet (5’) from a side or rear lot line in a residential district; and

(h) Exterior steps, ramps, elevated walkways, porches, window wells, flood barriers, and other elevated features that provide protection or resilience from flooding on the lot, provided such features do not project more than twelve (12’) feet beyond the line of the foundation wall of a building, are open to the air and are either unroofed or covered only by a Shade Canopy, and are not elevated higher than four (4’) feet above Grade or the 1%-Probability Long Term Flood Elevation as determined by the Flood Resilience Standards in Section 22.80 of this Zoning Ordinance, whichever is higher

Amendments to Article 23.000 – Standards for Urban Agriculture

Delete Section 23.20 (Urban Agriculture Definitions)!

Create New Section 23.50 – Standards for Henkeeping

23.51. General Standards for Henkeeping.

a. Henkeeping is allowed as an accessory use pursuant to Article 4.000 of this Zoning Ordinance, according to the standards herein. 

b. A permit must be obtained from the Cambridge Public Health Department for all keeping of hens, and permit-holders must be in compliance with all local public health regulations and state public health laws in order to keep hens.

c. Only female chickens (i.e., hens) may be kept. No male chickens (i.e., roosters) are allowed.

d. Care and disposal of hens must be in accordance with all local public health regulations and state public health laws.

23.52. Number of Hens.  No more than six (6) hens may be housed on a lot unless a permit issued by the Cambridge Public Health Department explicitly authorizes a greater number, but in no case shall more than twelve (12) hens be permitted.

23.53. Enclosures.

a. Hens must be kept within an enclosure consisting of a henhouse and a hen run.

b. All hen enclosures shall be located at least five (5) feet from a property line, or may be closer to the property line if there is a solid wall, fence, or similar opaque barrier visually screening the enclosure from an abutting property.

c. A hen enclosure shall not be located in a front yard.

d. Freestanding henhouses shall not be more than eight (8) feet in height and shall cover no more than fifty (50) square feet of lot area.

e. Freestanding henhouses shall be designed, constructed, and managed so as to prevent and deter access to rodents and other vermin.

f. A hen enclosure shall be built in conformance with all applicable building, health, and safety laws, rules, and regulations.

Passed to a second reading at the City Council

meeting held on October 16, 2023 and on or after

November 7, 2023 the question comes on passage

to be ordained.

 

Attest:

Diane P. LeBlanc, City Clerk