Each of several proposed changes to Harrisville’s zoning ordinances is stated and explained in accompanying documents that may be downloaded as PDF files.

At the voting booths on March 11, 2014, you will be given several ballots to vote on proposed amendments to Harrisville’s Zoning Ordinances. The Planning Board has initiated all of these ordinance changes, has held Public Hearings on them and recommends them all. We want voters and property owners to be as fully informed as possible before voting, so here is a summary of what is proposed.

Printed copies of each proposed amendment with current wording and proposed wording may be obtained at the following locations:

  1. Town Offices (both Selectmen’s Office and Town Clerk’s Office)
  2. Town Library
  3. Recycling Center/Transfer Station.

Article VI: RESIDENTIAL AND AGRICULTURAL DISTRICT: Change in wording of 6.1.4 to permit duplex and multiple-family housing, in addition to single family dwellings. This will allow Harrisville more opportunities for affordable housing, which the state requires.


Article IX: LAKESIDE RESIDENTIAL DISTRICT:  This article works in conjunction with Article XV, SHORELAND OVERLAY DISTRICT. Many amendments in both articles are due to reorganization of the separate section, in some cases moving sections from one article to the other. Several sections are renumbered. Article IX also expands a list of lakes in the town by two that had been previously omitted.  Section 9.1.6. now incorporates language previously in Article XV, including one substantive change reducing structure setbacks from 25 feet to 15 feet.

Proposed Articles IX_Changes

Article XV: SHORELAND OVERLAY DISTRICT:  Several proposed changes are to eliminate redundancies, clarify language, and to delete sections that do not involve town oversight. In addition, Article 15.5 specifies activities that do not need permits and 15.6 helps to clarify activities needing permits from the town, and those needing permits from NH DES (Department of Environmental Services). Section (previously is a substantive change, expanding the allowed width of decks as additions to nonconforming structures from 10 feet to 24 feet.

Proposed Articles XV_Changes

Article XXVI: DEFINITIONS: The proposed definitions of COMMERCIAL and INDUSTRIAL are more specific than previous definitions.

Proposed_XXVI, Commercial_Industrial_Changes

COMMERCIAL AND INDUSTRIAL DISTRICTS: The Planning Board proposes changes to the Commercial and Industrial Districts in Harrisville Village and to a Commercial District in Chesham Village. The Industrial District is expanded only slightly to include the entirety of pieces of property that are currently sliced off by the limits of the Historic District.
The Commercial District in Harrisville Village currently only contains one building, which is the building containing the store and the Post Office. The Planning Board proposes expanding the Commercial District into better alignment with current and potential future uses. Please note that both the Industrial and Commercial Districts are mixed use districts, allowing and containing residential properties as well as those used for business.

There is no difference in tax assessment for properties in a Residential District and those in a Commercial District, so properties not currently included in a Commercial District but which may be included in an expanded Commercial District will have no tax assessment change according to our tax assessor. Although town history indicates that properties in Chesham Village were used commercially, any Commercial District there has vanished from our current zoning map. The Planning Board proposes to designate the properties at the intersection of Chesham Road and Breed Road a small Commercial District.