Zoning Code Re-Write Project

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Our proposed zoning code is designed to allow Middleton to grow while protecting the things we love. It reflects modern development and land use practices that create opportunities for innovation and redevelopment, encourage mixed-use development and walkability, promote a range of housing options, enhance stormwater management, and foster community sustainability and resilience. We look forward to obtaining public feedback on the draft ordinance.

Project Status  (updated September 26, 2023)

The full draft of the proposed Zoning Ordinancedraft Zoning Map, and draft Sign Code are now available for review by the public and pertinent city committees/commissions. This fall, there will be ample opportunities for the public to learn about the ordinance, ask questions, and provide comments. Five Open Houses are scheduled, from September 28 through October 14 (see Public Meetings section below). A formal public hearing will be scheduled for a Plan Commission meeting, likely in late October. Questions and comments can be directed to City Planner Mark Opitz at mopitz@cityofmiddleton.us 


The City’s zoning regulations have been largely unchanged since the 1980s. To help implement the City’s 2021 Comprehensive Plan, Planning & Community Development staff have worked with a consultant (Vandewalle & Associates) to rewrite the entire zoning ordinance and create a new zoning map, as well as to overhaul the City's sign code (Chapter 19) and outdoor lighting code (Chapter 33).  They met periodically with an informal workgroup comprised of one representative of the Plan Commission, Sustainability Committee, and the Zoning Board of Appeals to discuss and key policy issues.  Starting in May 2023, the Plan Commission reviewed key policy questions related to the three ordinances (the Zoning Code was originally drafted in two parts, but has now been combined into one document), and project staff subsequently worked to edit the draft ordinances to address feedback provided by workgroup participant, commissioners, and the city attorney.  City staff posted an initial working draft of the zoning ordinance in late July, with the first official full draft released on August 22. 

The draft Zoning Ordinance is currently being reviewed by pertinent city committees and commissions, which will provide feedback for discussion at the September 26 Plan Commission meeting. City staff anticipate making further revisions to the ordinances. Upon adoption, any property within the City of Middleton that is not part of a Planned Development District will be assigned a new zoning classification. For more information, to ask questions or provide feedback, contact City Planner Mark Opitz at mopitz@cityofmiddleton.us.  

Ordinances and Related Documents  

Zoning Ordinance (proposed to replace Chapter 10)
Full Draft - Zoning Ordinance (released 8/22/23; a second draft will be posted by 10/05/23)
Draft Zoning Map (released 9/8/23)

Part 1 - Policy Decision Guide for Plan Commission discussion
Part 1 - Plan Commission Feedback (5/23/23)
Part 2 -Policy Decision Guide for Plan Commission discussion
Part 2 - Plan Commission Feedback (7/11/23)

Extra-Territorial Zoning Ordinance pertaining to Middleton/Westport Joint Planning Area (new Chapter 35)
Draft ETZ Ordinance (to be posted by end of September)

Sign Code (proposed to replace Chapter 22)
Draft Sign Code (released 9/20/23)
Sign Code - Policy Decision Guide

Outdoor Lighting Code (proposed to replace Chapter 33)
Draft Outdoor Lighting Code (revised 8/30/23)
Lighting Code - Policy Decision Guide

Informational Resources

These documents, which remain under development, are intended to help provide the public and decision-makers with background about the zoning code rewrite project.

Project Summary Guide -- Frequently Asked Questions (updated 9/26/23)
Scenarios -- What does the new ordinance mean for my property?
Zoning District Breakdown with Examples
Translation Table to Zoning Districts (updated 9/11/23)
Current Zoning Ordinance (largely unchanged since early 1980s)

To Receive Project Updates

To receive periodic emails or text messages regarding this project, select "Zoning Code Re-Write Project" through the City's "Notify Me" service.

Public Meetings

Upcoming Meetings

Tuesday, 9/26/23      7:00 p.m.               Plan Commission scheduled to discuss feedback from committees.
Thursday, 9/28/23    5:30 - 8:00 p.m.     Open House @ Kromrey Middle School (in the Cafetorium)
Saturday, 9/30/23     9:30 - 11:00 a.m.   Open House @ Middleton Library (lower level)
Monday, 10/02/23    5:30 - 8:00 p.m.     Open House @ Middleton Library (lower level)
Monday, 10/09/23    5:30 - 8:00 p.m.     Open House @ Kromrey Middle School (in the Cafetorium)
Saturday, 10/14/23   9:30 -11:00 a.m.   Open House @ Middleton Library (lower level)

Previous Meetings

8/19/21  Zoning Code Workshop at Kromrey Middle School
1/29/22 Joint Meeting of the Common Council and Plan Commission
8/17/22  Water Resources Management Commission (Overlay districts)
8/09/22  Plan Commission meeting (Feedback on Bulk & Land Use tables)
5/23/23 Plan Commission meeting (Discussion of Zoning Code Part 1 Key Policy Issues)
7/11/23 Plan Commission meeting (Discussion of Zoning Code Part 2 Key Policy Issues)
8/08/23 Plan Commission meeting, Item #7 (Discussion of Key Policy Issues pertaining to the Sign Code and Outdoor Lighting Code)
9/12/23 Plan Commission meeting (Discussion of Draft Zoning Map)

Project Purpose

In 2021, the City of Middleton began the process of preparing a new Zoning Ordinance and Map. The purposes of this project are to modernize zoning regulations, streamline zoning processes, encourage reinvestment, and implement the City’s Comprehensive Plan.  The process to complete the new Zoning Ordinance and Map will likely last through the end of summer of 2023. Public input is encouraged throughout so that the Zoning Ordinance reflects community wishes. This website is one opportunity for two-way communication on the progress and contents of the Zoning Ordinance and Map.

For more information on the process, see the Zoning Ordinance Rewrite Frequently Asked Questions document or contact Mark Opitz, City Planner and Zoning Administrator, by phone at (608) 821-8394 or by email at mopitz@cityofmiddleton.us.

Objetivo del Proyecto

2021, la Ciudad de Middleton comenzó un proceso para actualizar su Ordenanza y Mapa de Zonificación. El propósito de este proyecto es para modernizar las regulaciones de zonificación, simplificar el proceso de zonificación, y implementar el Plan Integral de la Ciudad. El proceso para completar la Ordenanza de Zonificación y el Mapa finalizará en el fin de verano de 2023. Se fomenta la participación pública durante todo el proceso para que la Ordenanza de Zonificación refleje los deseos de la comunidad. Este sitio web es una oportunidad para la comunicación bidireccional sobre el progreso y el contenido de la Ordenanza de Zonificación.

Para obtener más información sobre el proceso, consulte el documento de Preguntas Frecuentes sobre la reescritura de la Ordenanza de Zonificación o comuníquese con Mark Opitz, Planificador de la Ciudad y Administrador de Zonificación, por teléfono al (608) 821-8394 o por correo electrónico a mopitz@cityofmiddleton.us