Land Use Services

The Land Use Services Division works with residents, businesses, developers and government agencies to implement the community’s established vision for the future. By consistently interpreting, applying and enforcing local zoning regulations, the Division ensures development and land use is compatible with surrounding areas to preserve our high quality of life, maintain the unique character of neighborhoods and commercial corridors, and promote a healthy and safe community.

Page updated on Oct 27, 2021 at 10:18 AM


  • PLEASE NOTE:  Zoning staff usually available in the Permit Center can be reached by email at or by leaving a message at 703.746.4333. Your email or call will be promptly returned. Please direct Inquiries related to Special Use Permits, Subdivisions, Encroachments and Vacations to

  • Temporary Outdoor Business Permits
    • Restaurant, retail and fitness businesses may operate in on-street parking spaces, on sidewalks or in parking lots through Department of Planning & Zoning approval of a temporary outdoor business expansion permit. Requests must be reviewed by the Department of Planning & Zoning prior to setting up the alternative areas for outdoor dining, retail display and sales and fitness business use. There is no fee for these requests. The programs are in effect until January 1, 2022 and may be extended or shortened upon a decision by the City Manager. For restaurants, retail businesses and fitness use applications, contact Alexa Powell at Forms can be accessed below:

  • COVID-19 Coronavirus-Related Enforcement Changes for Small Businesses
    • To support local business and access to food, the City has temporarily suspended enforcement of the following regulations and special use permit conditions that limit hours of operation, business deliveries and off-premises alcohol sales. The City will also begin work on legislation to implement temporary or, where appropriate, permanent changes to the City Code to allow these activities.
      • Restaurant Deliveries and Pick-up: Suspended enforcement of delivery regulations in order to allow all restaurants to provide delivery service and pick-up service. Delivery vehicles and customer pick-ups may use on-street parking subject to posted parking requirements.
      • Hours of Operation: Suspended enforcement of hours-of-operation restrictions on restaurants, convenience stores, catering operations and automobile service stations (gasoline stations).
      • Sidewalk/Parking Lot Vending: Restaurants and retail establishments may vend on adjacent on-street parking spaces, sidewalks or parking lots. 
      • Off Premises Alcohol Sales: Suspending enforcement of local restrictions on alcohol sales, including off-premises alcohol sales and delivery. Business remain subject to all VABC licensure requirements.

Board of Zoning Appeals

The Board of Zoning Appeals (BZA) hears requests for variances, special exceptions and appeals. The BZA holds monthly public hearings in the City Council Chambers at 7:00 p.m. on the 2nd floor of City Hall. 

Special Use Permits

Uses listed in the Zoning Ordinance as Special Uses require either an administrative or public hearing Special Use Permit (SUP) before they can be established. Forms are available below to apply for SUP approval.

Zoning Initiatives and Resources

Contact Us

Department of Planning and Zoning
Land Use Services Division
301 King Street, Suite 2100
Alexandria, Virginia 22314
Phone: 703.746.4666
Office hours: Monday - Friday, 8:00am - 5:00pm