Planning Department FAQs

What is the zoning of my property?

The Assessing Department provides an Online Database for parcel information using street address, owner(s) name and/or map and lot number.

What are the allowed uses on my property?

Permitted Uses and Special Exception uses are listed in the Gorham Land Use and Development Codeand are specific to each zoning district.  Accessory and Conditional Uses may be permitted in some districts with the issuance of a permit from the Code Enforcement Officer.

What are the setbacks for my property?

The required front, rear, and side yard setbacks vary between zoning districts. Setbacks are listed for each district in the Gorham Land Use and Development Code.

Are front setbacks measured from the edge of pavement?

Setbacks are not measured from the edge of the pavement.  The front setback is measured from the street right-of-way, which is also the front property line of the parcel. The best way to determine the exact location of all property lines is to have a professional land surveyor locate the actual property corners.

What is the purpose of Plan Review?

The Plan Review process was established in order to protect property rights and values, and ensure that proposed development is consistent with the goals of the Town. These goals include: enhancement of properties with adequate landscaping, proper circulation within parking areas, and development that responds to the needs of the users, as well as presenting an attractive exterior to the public and adjoining property owners.

How soon can I get my application on the Planning Board agenda?

The Planning Department's deadline is approximately 5 1/2 weeks prior to the regularly scheduled Planning Board meetings (see Meeting Dates and Deadlines). This allows the Planning staff time to certify the application as complete, the Town’s Engineer and staff to review the application to ensure it meets basic standards, and following this review, adequate time for providing notice of the Public Hearing as required by Code.

What is required for submission with the project application?

An explanation of the Submissions Process is included in each application packet and also separately.  Planning Department applications are available on line and hard copies are available in the Planning Department.  The Town Planner will assist you in determining which application you will need to complete for Planning Board review, and will advise you of other requirements needed for a complete submittal.

How can I learn about development projects currently being reviewed by the Town?

To view a list of the Planning Department’s current active projects, please click here.

Who is notified of Public Hearings scheduled for the Planning Board?

The Gorham Land Use and Development Code requires that public notices be mailed to the developer and owner(s) and to the occupants of properties adjoining such subdivision, private way or site plan.  Property owners shall be considered to be the parties listed by the Assessing Department as those against whom taxes are assessed. Failure of any property owner to receive a notice of public hearing shall not necessitate another public hearing and shall not invalidate a Planning Board action.

Who should I contact if I have questions about the Land Use and Development Code?

All Gorham Land Use and Development Code questions should be referred to the Zoning Administrator,David C.M. Galbraith at 222-1621, or the Town Planner, Thomas M. Poirier at 222-1620.