Somerville, MA, Zoning Ordinances


By: Somerville City Plng Dept

Urban Agriculture

The city’s zoning code addresses urban agriculture. It provides definitions for a number of urban agriculture–related terms, including urban agriculture, arbor, aquaponics, cold frame, farm, farmstand, gardens, greenhouse, hens, honeybee, hoop house, and hydroponic (§2.2). 

The code establishes yard and roof farms, home and yard gardens, and hen and honeybee keeping as accessory residential uses permitted by right in all districts. It provides for various types and sizes of commercial farm/greenhouse uses, with and without honeybees or hens, as permitted or special uses in most districts. Community farms and farms on municipal properties without animals are permitted by right in all districts; animals require a special use permit (§7.11). Standards for urban agriculture uses are also provided and address hen and honeybee-keeping requirements, maintenance, accessory structures, and on-site sales of produce (§7.12.20–27).

Somerville, MA

2010 Population: 75,754

2010 Population Density: 18,404.76/square mile