Planning, Zoning and Code Enforcement

Planning and Zoning are important ways in which residents can work together to encourage beneficial land use patterns for the present and future occupants. Compliance by all can result in maintenance of a high quality of life, stable property values and physical integrity of the environment.  Staff guide residents, business owners, and developers through the Planning and Zoning Board processes.  

Planning

Township planning personnel operate under the vision statement of Medford's Master Plan:
Medford is a thriving, diverse community that provides a safe and healthy place to live for all residents by valuing the natural environment as well as a sustainable, broad-based economy that serves the needs of the community. The future development of Medford will:

  • Lower municipal costs by maximizing existing infrastructure    
  • Preserve open space 
  • Provide thriving commercial corridors 
  • Utilize smart growth principles to enhance neighborhood livability

Zoning

Zoning regulates land use by designating districts - such as residential and commercial - where specific uses are permitted and others prohibited. The idea is to avoid incompatible activities in proximity to one another and to enhance and preserve the livability of our community. Click here for the Zoning Map.
                   
This office coordinates applications for approvals for building homes, additions, decks, fences, pools, patios, sheds, and driveways. Applicants must provide a property survey and complete Zoning Application forms. When a business wants to locate within the Township, the Zoning Office will also issue a Zoning Permit to occupy the facility. The proposed use of the facility/building is reviewed for consistency with the Township Zoning Ordinances. After review and approval from the Zoning Office, applicants are required to apply with the Construction Department. Please note some proposed applications will be required to be approved by the Zoning Board of Adjustment.  The Zoning Office staff will be able to provide more detailed information to applicants.
 
Click HERE for the checklist of requirements for a Zoning Permit for a Residential Application.
 

Click HERE for the checklist of requirements for a Zoning Permit for a Non-Residential (Commercial/Business) Application. 

Specific questions concerning Zoning classifications, setback requirements, minimum lot requirements, and permitted uses for a property should be addressed to this Office. 
 
Businesses should refer to the Economic Development Commission page for additional resources and assistance.

The Legal Basis of Zoning

In New Jersey, municipalities are given zoning authority by a state statute called "The Municipal Land Use Law" (MLUL). (NJSA 40:55D-2) Local government may adopt a zoning ordinance and establish a Zoning Board of Adjustment to hear and decide variance requests and interpret the Zoning Ordinances. Additionally, "the Supreme Court has stated that the preservation of the character of a neighborhood and conservation of neighborhood values are still proper zoning purposes." (1991 Edition New Jersey Zoning and Land Use 'Administration, by Wm. M. Cox, 7-2.1, p. 100)
 

 

Code Enforcement 

The Zoning Officer is responsible for code enforcement; and is tasked with taking action and responding to complaints from residents that involve violations of Medford Township Codes. The enforcement of these Codes has a direct impact on the quality of life and the stabilizing of community values, in addition to the detection and reduction of criminal activity.

Code Enforcement violations can be reported to the Zoning Officer at 609-654-2608 Ext. 324, or at bportocalis@medfordtownship.com. You may also utilize our Citizen Reporting program via the link on the homepage. 

Common complaints that are a violation of Medford Township Codes are as follows:

Signs

The Township Council has adopted Ordinance #2013-1 including various sign standards to provide efficient and controlled standards for signs that balance the aesthetic and economic development needs of the Township of Medford.  Please click HERE for a copy of the Ordinance. 

No sign, other than exempt signs, shall be erected without first obtaining a sign permit from the Zoning Office. No sign shall be erected within the right-of-way of any public street or sidewalk, at any intersection within the triangular area formed by the right-of-way lines, or in any way that impedes the vision of motorists or pedestrians or otherwise endangers their safety. No sign shall be placed on any tree, telegraph, electric or public utility pole, or upon rocks or other natural features. Political signs are allowed, provided they are on private property, set back at least 15 feet from all street and property lines and are not more than 16 square feet. These signs shall be permitted within 30 days prior to and must be removed with 10 days of the election. Yard and garage sale signs shall not exceed 4 square feet and may not be erected more than 7 days prior to such sale and must be removed with 48 hours after sale.  Entities wishing to utilize any other signage are suggested to contact the Zoning Office or refer to the above Ordinance for more information.  

Chapter 66 “Dogs” 

Any property within the Township of Medford with dogs must have them vaccinated against rabies and licensed by the Township. (Please refer to Clerk's Office for more information)  No person shall own any dog which habitually cries or barks in a manner, which would annoy or disturb a reasonable person. No person owning a dog and/or cat shall permit it to run at large upon public streets, parks, or any public place within the Township nor permit it to run at large on private property without the owners permission. No person shall allow a dog to defecate on or commit any nuisance on any portion of public property whatsoever, and any private property without the permission of the owner.  (Section 502 of the Land Development Regulations covers other Animals)

 Chapter 519 Land Development “Maintenance”

Residents and businesses are required to keep their property maintained at all times. The exterior of the properties are to be properly maintained. Every foundation, floor, wall, ceiling, door, window, roof or other part of the building shall be kept in good repair and capable of the use intended by its design, and any exterior part or parts thereof subject to corrosion or deterioration shall be kept well painted. Every dwelling shall be free from rodents, vermin and insects. Every building, dwelling, dwelling unit and all other areas of the premises shall be clean and free from garbage or rubbish and hazards to safety. Lawns, hedges and bushes shall be kept trimmed and shall not be permitted to become overgrown and unsightly. Fences shall be kept in good repair

Chapter 89 “Littering”

No person shall throw, drop, discard or otherwise place litter of any nature upon any public or private property, other than in a litter receptacle. It is unlawful to discard or dump along any street or road, on or off any right-of-way, any litter, household or commercial waste, rubbish, refuse, junk, vehicle or vehicle parts, without written consent of the property owner. The owner or person in control of any private property shall at all times maintain the premises free of litter, except for storage in authorized litter receptacles.

Chapter 129 “Streets and Sidewalks”

 No person shall tear up, open, dig, or excavate any street, highway, road or public place or right-of-way or disturb any pavement, curbing, guttering without having obtained a permit from the Clerk's Office. Click here for the application. The owners, occupants, or tenants of premises abutting any street shall remove all snow and ice from sidewalks within 24 hours after the snow and/or ice accumulation ceases. 

Chapter 102 "Noise"

The operation of any musical or television equipment must not be audible at a distance of more than fifty (50) feet between the hours of 11 pm and 7 am.  Use of construction equipment is permitted between the hours of 7 am and 6 pm weekdays and 9 am until 5 pm on Saturdays. No construction equipment use is permitted on Sundays.  Enforcement is through the Police Department.

   

Complete copies of the Township of Medford Code are available for review at the Township Clerk’s Office. The Township Code is also accessible online by clicking on the links above or  here. 

 

            

 
           

 

Additional Links

Contact Information

Zoning Official & Zoning Board Secretary
Beth Portocalis (ext 324)
Email: bportocalis

Zoning Assistant 
Krystle Garrison (ext. 315) 
Email:  kgarrison

Planning Board Secretary 
Kim Gerber (ext 312) 
Email: kgerber

Office Assistant
Kathy McCrink (ext 314)
Email: kmccrink  

17 North Main Street
Medford, NJ 08055

Phone: (609) 654-2608
Fax: (609) 953-7720

Hours of Operation:
Monday - Friday
8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

  • Municipal Center Address: 17 North Main Street, Medford, NJ 08055
  • Phone: (609) 654-2608
  • Fax: (609) 953-4087
  • Hours: 8:30 am - 4:30pm