Planning and Community Development

Facilities & Hours of Operation:

Planning Department Planning 288 Central Ave
View Map
(603) 516-6008

Monday - Thursday

8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.


8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.


Welcome to the Department of Planning and Community Development

In Dover, Planning and Community Development is administered by the Planning Department. The department has worked to implement changes to the land use regulations, which are geared toward promoting smart growth. This type of growth looks to balance environmental needs with human/economic needs. 

Using the Web, we hope to serve you in the best possible manner. If we can be of service, please do not hesitate to call or email our office.

2020 Zoning Amendments:

Dover property owners and residents recently received a letter about posted zoning amendments. The letter includes information about four public hearings the Planning Board will hold in April and May. In addition to those, the Board has scheduled a fifth public hearing on June 23rd. 

In addition to the public hearings, the public can provide comments by email at or, by phone at (603) 516-MEET (6338), or by mail, addressed to City of Dover, Department of Planning and Community Development, 288 Central Ave., Dover, NH 0320. All comments received will be distributed to the Planning Board and will be acknowledged in meeting minutes.

  • View the Planning Board adopted syntax and re-stacking amendments to the zoning ordinance.
  • View the Planning Board adopted substantive rezoning amendments to the zoning ordinance
  • View the presentation on proposed amendments,
  • View the City Council workshop about the amendments
  • View the summary of the amendments
  • View the Report of the Rezoning Committee's review

Recreation Chapter of the Master Plan Update

The City is updating its Recreation Chapter of the Master Plan. 

For more information or questions, please contact City Planner Donna Benton at

As the Dover community addresses the issues that are developing in conjunction with the COVID-19 outbreak, I wanted to alert you to some changes to the Planning Department’s normal operating procedures.

Beginning March 18th, City Hall will be open for staff only. The public will be able to communicate and conduct business via phone and email, but not in person. We will not be holding in person non-noticed meetings with the public, but are happy to schedule phone call “meetings”. If you need to communicate with staff, you may email or call, during normal business hours.

Customary Home Occupation, Accessory Dwelling Unit, Sign Permits and Impact Fees may be submitted via mail and we will process and respond by phone and email.

We will coordinate with Inspection Services on Certificates of Occupancy/Completion.

Site Inspections, for off-site improvements, for conditions of approval or code enforcement will be evaluated on a case by case basis, and performed with public and staff safety in mind.

Thank you for bearing with us and being flexible with your needs. 

To review all of the City's actions and information regarding COVID-19, click here

Land Use Regulations 

Interested in developing in Dover?

We have created a handbook in Dover to assist property owners and developers in developing and redeveloping their property. View it here.

The City of Dover's land use regulations can be found in the following chapters of the City Code:

Chapter 153, Site Review Regulations. View online here.

Chapter 157, Subdivision of Land. View online here.

Chapter 170, Zoning. View online here.

Mission Statement

To facilitate the process of determining Dover’s long-range development goals and advocate the implementation of these goals once they are established with particular emphasis on economic development; to serve the public as a source of information and data about the community; to develop and fairly administer regulatory processes that apply to development and construction with an emphasis on assisting the public, and to provide expertise for special projects with emphasis on GIS, economic development, transportation and land use.  

Major Service Responsibilities for the Planning Office

  • Maintain and implement the City’s Master Plan
  • Maintain and administer the approval process for development and subdivision of land 
  • Staff the Planning Board, Conservation Commission, Zoning Board of Adjustment and City Council for their respective land use and development issues
  • Serve as an information source on the City and development process for the public, City departments and applicants
  • Represent the City on regional and state committees and projects
  • Conduct research and grant writing
  • Conduct special projects as assigned by the City Manager or any of the City’s Boards and Commissions  

Boards Served

  • Planning Board
  • Cochecho Waterfront Development Advisory Committee
  • Community Trail Advisory Committee
  • Conservation Commission
  • Energy Commission
  • Open Lands Committee
  • Transportation Advisory Committee

Planning Department Documents

Click here to view a list of all Planning Department documents.

Planning Department Forms