The Okanogan County commissioners unanimously approved an amendment to the county code that requires at least twice the minimum lot size for planned developments in Mazama. The change makes zoning in the Upper Valley more consistent with that in the rest of the Methow Review District. The commissioners adopted the amendment on Monday (March 24).

The change applies in the rural residential and low-density residential zones, which currently exist only in Mazama but could be created elsewhere in the county, according to Okanogan County Senior Planner Ben Rough.

Planned developments are an alternative to traditional subdivision and often allow greater density in exchange for clustered buildings, open space and other environmental benefits.

The change means that anyone proposing a planned development in either zone will have to have a minimum of 10 acres on the valley floor or 40 acres in the uplands. Those sizes are twice the minimum lot size in each zone.