HGA | Heyer, Gruel & Associates

New Providence FAR Study

Single Family Residential Floor Area Ratio Study

Borough of New Providence

HGA examined the use of floor area ratio as a standard for regulating the scale and intensity of development in New Providence’s single family residential zones. As a planning tool, floor area ratio has been historically used as a measure of intensity for multifamily residential structures, office buildings, and other commercial uses. In an attempt to control the scale of residential development, a number of communities have used floor area ratios to control single-family development with varying degrees of success.

HGA provided the Borough with the following recommendations:

  • Establish a building coverage standard to regulate residential intensity and protect the unique character of New Providence.
  • Update building height standards to limit heights to two habitable floors.
  • Include basements as a story when more than sixty percent of its perimeter is more  than four feet above grade.
  • Increase side yard setbacks to prevent homes from being built too close to one another.
  • Create exceptions for building encroachments to allow for more interesting home details, such as bay windows, porches, and overhanging eaves.