Aesthetic Zoning Law and Legal Definition

Aesthetic zoning means a zoning in which, zoning regulations such as conformity to architectural and landscaping requirements are imposed to preserve the aesthetic features or values of an area. For instance, restrictions as to metal buildings, location of off-street parking, side yard setbacks, and front and rear yard setbacks are examples of aesthetic zoning regulations. Any failure to comply with the aesthetic zoning requirements can result in a project going substantially over-budget and becoming economically disastrous. Hence, aesthetic zoning looks at the essential characteristics of the community and its environment. It is also termed as form-based zoning.

In Westfield Motor Sales Co. v. Westfield, 129 N.J. Super. 528 (Law Div. 1974), the court observed that “the concept of aesthetic zoning is admittedly a most difficult one to put into fair practice, but that does not mean that it cannot be judicially recognized in some situations as a proper community objective.”