VPA Publications


This section of our site includes a number of publications that may be useful to planners. Some, but not all, have been written by members of VPA.

Facilitating Innovative Agricultural Enterprises: Considerations and Example Language for Vermont Municipalities

Regulation of agripreneurial uses in Vermont varies among municipalities and many uses exist in a gray area. This unclear area creates confusion among farmers, municipalities, and the state. While the bulk of regulation is in the hands of municipalities, some of their regulatory authority has been preempted by the state. Those seeking to establish agripreneurial businesses often try to fit their uses under state agricultural exemptions, or Accepted Agricultural Practices (AAPs), which can stretch exemptions to cover uses for which they were not designed.

This document, produced by the Vermont Law School Land Use Clinic for Vermont Planners Association and Composting Association of Vermont (Spring 2012), focuses on how planners can work with agricultural enterprises that go beyond the traditional scope of agriculture.

FIAgE052012.pdf – Download File

Property Owners Guide to Flood Resiliency

This guide, which was written with the support of the Vermont Planners Association, helps property owners through the complicated process of recovering from a severe flood.

Final-Guide-3.27.14-small.pdf – Download File

Vermont Flood Hazard Area Statutes Project Summary

The Vermont Planners Association undertook this project at the request of its members, to clarify who has jurisdiction under Vermont statutes and the National Flood Insurance Program for regulating development within designated flood hazard areas.

VPA contracted with the Vermont Law School’s Land Use Clinic for technical and legal assistance on this project. VLS clinicians conducted background research, identified, contacted and met with affected state agency representatives, arranged for and staffed advisory committee meetings, and drafted project memos, summaries and proposed legislation. VPA’s Technical Advisory Group reviewed and provided feedback on drafts prepared by VLS clinicians. An initial meeting of the Project Advisory Committee was held on December 10, 2010 to frame the scope of the project. A final meeting of the Project Advisory Committee was held at the State House on November 29, 2011 to present and discuss VLS’s recommendations. VPA would like to thank everyone involved in this project – and especially our VLS clinicians – for their donations of time, expertise and resources.

VTFHAStatutesProjectReport.pdf – Download File

Implementing Growth Centers in Vermont

Written by former VPA Board Member Michael J. Munson, Ph.D., AICP, this study attempted to assess interest in growth center planning among local planners, to identify obstacles faced by local planning efforts, and to identify possible state incentives that could encourage or enhance local growth center planning efforts. It was found that there is a lot of interest among Vermont’s municipalities in growth center planning.  A very high percentage of local planners are aware of the state’s goal of creating compact settlements surrounded by rural areas.  Most towns appear to have at least one growth center.

MMGrowthCentersReport.pdf – Download File

Making Smart Growth Smarter – How to Make Dense Development Work in Vermont

A 2006 report from the Vermont Planners Association addressing obstacles to Smart Growth and to identify strategies for overcoming these obstacles.  MakingSmartGrowthSmarter


Growth Centers in Vermont – A Vermont Solution to Sprawl

A 1996 report from the Vermont Planners Association which was an attempt to bring clarity to the concept of “Growth Center” as it is used in Vermont. The VPA Growth Centers Committee (which exists today) was created to author this report.

1996 VPA Report – GrowthCentersReport.pdf – Download File

1996 Growth Centers Commitee Paper used in the report – GrowthCentersPaper.pdf – Download file

VPA Sprawl Flier

This flier, produced by VPA, provides a background on Sprawl and Growth Centers.

SprawlPamphlet.pdf – Download File

APA Inclusionary Zoning Toolbox

This presentation, in .pdf format, comes from an APA session sponsored by Zoning Practice, which focuses on Inclusionary Zoning techniques.

APASFInclusionary.pdf – Download File

Formula Retail

The practice of regulating large-scale commercial developments, such as “big box” stores, by using formulas that make them impractical has been tested in the courts and has found support. The doument below addresses these challenges and provides the reader with information from the 2003 California court case which made this concept legal.

formularetail.pdf – Download File

Growth Centers: A Vermont Solution to Sprawl

A documentary on growth centers produced by the Vermont Planners Association in 1999.


Community Planning in Vermont: Five Case Studies

By Debra Mason.  Prepared for the Vermont Planners Association 1994. Download File