Laurel is planning a new zoning category for its historic district, the first historic district established in Prince George's County.

The new classification, called the Village Zone, will allow several zoning uses and eventually will be implemented along Main Street from Rte. 1 to Seventh Street if the City Council approves the plan, city planner Karl Brendle said.

The area along Main Street that would make up the historic district now contains many different zoning categories, Brendle said.

The Village Zone category not only will allow existing commercial and residential uses but also will give the Planning Department discretion over yard regulations, such as the required setback of a building from the street or required parking facilities.

In other zoning classifications, setback and parking requirements are included in the zoning ordinance, Brendle said.

"We're very excited about it. It gives the developer flexibility and gives the Planning Department modifying powers in the street scape," Brendle said. The new zone could attract developers to the historic district, he said.

In other business, the council increased fines for several traffic violations.

The fine for parking by a fire hydrant needed for an emergency rose from $25 to $100, city clerk Kaye Sandul said. Parking near a fire hydrant at other times or too close to an intersection will carry a fine of $25 instead of $10.