Business (B) Zoning

There are 3 business zoning classifications in Harford County: B1, B2 and B3. Mixed Use Center zoning is permitted in all 3 Business zones if the property is more than 5 acres, has public water & sewer, and is located inside the Development Envelope.

B1 Zoning

B1 Neighborhood Business District. “This district is intended to provide limited retail and service facilities convenient to residential neighborhoods. Uses are limited primarily to convenience of goods and services satisfying the household and personal needs of the residents of abutting residential neighborhoods. Standards are established compatible with low-density residential districts, resulting in similar building bulk and low concentration of vehicular traffic.” § 267-59 in the Zoning Code. Maximum impervious surface allowed is 80% of the parcel.  Single family, duplex and semi-detached housing are also permitted.

B1 zoning in the Development Envelope.


B1 zoning can be found outside the Development Envelope. It was typically long-standing local businesses that existed before there was a Zoning Code. Planning & Zoning would recommend their zoning change from AG to B1 to reflect their use.

B2 Zoning

B2 Community Business District. “This district is intended to provide a wider range and scale of retail, business and service uses than are permitted in the B1 district and is oriented to serve several neighborhoods. The intensity of development as well as the concentration of vehicular traffic is greater than the B1 district.” § 267-59. In addition to the residential units listed in B1, hotels/motels, lodging houses (multistory “transient” apartments), nursing homes and assisted living facilities are also permitted.

B2 zoning.

B3 Zoning

B3 is the most intense business zoning. The Zoning Code describes it as, “B3 General Business District. The purpose of this district is to provide a wide range of retail, service and business uses serving local and Countywide areas. Such activities are generally located along arterial roads.” § 267-59. However, residential zoning is allowed with a Conventional Open Space development plan.

All residential housing types are permitted, though some require additional regulations be followed.


Residential in B3 zoning.
Business in B3 zoning.