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Keeping chickens in SF-1 district to be discussed tonight

The Gloucester Planning Commission will discuss a code amendment to allow the keeping of chickens in the Single Family (SF-1) zoning district during a meeting that begins at 7:30 tonight in the colonial courthouse.

“Currently, keeping chickens for personal enjoyment is allowed in all the other single-family residential districts,” Anne Ducey-Ortiz, Gloucester’s director of planning and zoning, wrote in a Nov. 25 memorandum to the commission.

Ducey-Ortiz said that “the subject of ‘urban chickens’ or ‘backyard chickens’ is one that staff has been aware of for quite some time. It became a hot topic on planning discussion boards about five years ago, and staff has been paying attention to this ‘movement’ ever since.

“We have noted the number of complaints received regarding chickens roaming, but we’ve also heard how surprised some people are to find out that they cannot keep chickens in the single-family detached re...

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