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Green Area Ratio Overview

GAR overview

What is GAR?

The Green Area Ratio is an environmental sustainability zoning regulation that sets standards for landscape and site design to help reduce stormwater runoff, improve air quality, and keep the city cooler.

Updated GAR Guidebook Published

On November 17, 2017, DOEE published the updated Green Area Ratio Guidebook, which modernizes the 2015 GAR Guidebook to conform to the 2016 Zoning Regulations. This revision also clarifies issues that stakeholders and DOEE noted in the previous version. The revisions provide guidance for GAR permitting, GAR review and any requirements from the Zoning Regulations of 2016 in Title 11 of the DCMR, Subtitle C; revises the list of invasive plant species; clarifies discrepancies with the Department’s stormwater regulations; updates landscape element design standards; updates the GAR Score Sheet to allow automated native bonus calculations; provides a non-inclusive GAR plant list; and further defines multiple lot submittal requirements as well as lots with multiple zones and some historic structures. The updated copy is available under GAR Guidebook.

Submit Green Area Ratio Plan Information Online

Beginning December 1, 2017, minor Green Area Ratio projects (less than 5,000 square feet of disturbance and no stormwater management review required) may now be reviewed through ProjectDox alongside minor sediment and erosion control reviews. 

Step 1. Submit plans through DCRA's ProjectDox system.  

Step 2. Create a  stormwater database entry with all required information to have fees issued.  

Step 3. Plans will be reviewed, commented on, and approved through ProjectDox.

Major projects (disturbance 5,000 square feet or greater) will continue to be reviewed with stormwater management plans through DOEE's Stormwater Database. 

Use the Stormwater Database to submit compliance calculations and supplemental information to DOEE as part of its Green Area Ratio Plan review process.

For additional information, please contact Margie Noonan at [email protected] or at 202.727.6933

For questions regarding the development of the GAR regulation, refer to the Office of Planning.
GAR graphic



Cooler Temperatures  |  Improved Air Quality  |  Reduced Stormwater

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