The Code of Ordinances for the Town of Morristown, New Jersey, provides for a Transit Village Core Zone (TVC), which is aimed at creating a livable, walkable community that decreases the need for cars. The town was the first of five transit villages designated in 2000 by New Jersey Department of Transportation and New Jersey Transit, as its downtown includes a New Jersey Transit station on the Midtown Direct Line that connects commuters to New York Penn Station. In September 2009, the town unveiled a $75 million, 217-unit condominium project known as the Highlands at Morristown Station that is located adjacent to the train station and within a short walking distance to the town’s downtown area.
The TVC Zone aims to implement mixed-uses in the area surrounding the transit station by allowing for the development of professional offices, retail space, hotels, restaurants, banking institutions, and publicly or privately-owned open spaces, such as parks and plazas, that are available to the general public. In order to decrease automobile use, certain uses such as the sale of building materials, plumbing supplies, motor vehicles, boats, swimming pools, furniture, and large appliances, are prohibited. The ordinance also allows for the reduction of minimum parking requirements; for example, parking for residential lots may be reduced up to 25 percent. The zoning officer has the power to inspect any lot within the TVC Zone, in order to confirm that the amount of parking provided is actually being used. Additionally, the ordinance imposes aesthetic regulations for parking structures: parking structures may not be located within 20 feet of a street, and where the parking structure faces the street, an evergreen landscaped buffer of at least eight feet in height must be provided. The ordinance also requires the façade of any parking structure to be brick or some other material that is acceptable to the Planning Board. Lastly, the ordinance allows for a density “bonus” if the developer devotes five percent of the dwelling units as affordable rental residential spaces.