The Zoning Board of Appeal (ZBA) is an autonomous body of seven members who are appointed by the Mayor. The ZBA hears requests for conditional use permits, variances, permission to expand/change nonconforming uses, and similar zoning relief. The ZBA is not part of the BPDA but is instead housed in the Inspectional Services Department of the City of Boston.
The BPDA interacts with the ZBA in two main ways. BPDA planners create non-binding recommendations on ZBA applications, which are approved by the BPDA Board and then given to the ZBA for their consideration. In addition, the ZBA may require BPDA design review as a condition of zoning relief.
ZBA Project Tracker
The City's Inspectional Services Department has launched an online Zoning Board of Appeal (ZBA) project tracker, available here. The tracker is designed for anyone to be able to quickly search and identify the status of the appeal that has been submitted to the ZBA. To learn more, please visit: boston.gov/news/zoning-board-appeal-project-tracker-now-available-online.