Pass Christian, Mississippi

Pass Christian, population 13,179 (2010) occupies a peninsula on the Gulf of Mexico in Harrison County, Mississippi, 65 miles east of New Orleans. In 2005, all but 500 of the 8,000 homes in the City were damaged or destroyed by Hurricane Katrina. Subsequently the City adopted a Smartcode that designates Preserve Sector (O1) for areas that are already protected as well as Reserve Sector (O2) that includes all land outside an Urban Boundary Line (UBL) some of which is reserved for future expansion of the UGB and some of which is intended for permanent preservation. When an O2 site is permanently preserved, it is re-designated as O-1. TDR is one of the tools used here to accomplish these preservation goals with receiving areas in the new Communities sectors as regulated by Section 3.4 and Table 14B of the Smartcode.

The Preserve Sector O-1 includes lands protected by environmental regulations as well as land preserved by acquisition or conservation easement. The resources here include wetlands, water bodies, habitat and open space. The O-1 is described as lying outside a Rural Boundary Line (RBL) which is intended as a line identifying lands that are permanently preserved.

The Reserve Sector (O-2), which serves as the TDR sending area, includes some lands that will ultimately be brought within the Urban Boundary Line (UBL) and some lands that will ultimately be preserved and re-designated as O-1. The Smartcode distinguishes floodplains and steep slopes from other resources in the O-2 that are stated for preservation: buffers, corridors, Legacy Woodlands, Legacy Farmland and Legacy Viewshed. The description of the Reserve Sector (Section 2.2.3) includes the TDR allocation ratio of one Equivalent Housing Unit (EHU) per acre of land preserved. Each EHU can be used to build one dwelling unit, two motel/hotel rooms or 1,000 square feet of non-residential floor area.

Table 14.B identifies four zones as receiving areas as follows.

Zone Baseline EHU/ net acre Maximum EHU/net acre
T4L Urban Limited 12 18
T4+ Urban Open 18 30
T5C Urban Center 30 60
T5H Urban Height 36 75

In addition to the primary transfer mechanism, applicants can propose area-specific transfer programs when they propose plans and codes for infill areas meant to supplement the Smartcode over time. Density Recovery Transfers are also available to relocate development potential foregone when developers create certain types of rights of way.

In March 2012, City Planner Abby Esien reported that the TDR provisions of the Smartcode had not yet been used.