Land Use

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The Town’s land use patterns are shaped by a policy enacted in 1986 as part of a joint planning agreement among Chapel Hill, the adjacent Town of Carrboro and Orange County. The agreement establishes an Urban Services Area, totaling about 16,000 acres for Chapel Hill, within which urban services such as community water and sewer systems, fire and police protection, and similar services will be provided. The Town’s corporate limits now include about 13,500 acres with the remaining area to be annexed as development occurs. About 53 percent of the land use within the Urban Services Area is residential; 21 percent institutional; 5 percent commercial; 11 percent parks and open space; 7 percent undeveloped; and the rest in a variety of uses.
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