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Old Posted Oct 2, 2017, 4:48 PM
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LMich LMich is offline
Midwest Moderator - Editor
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Big Mitten
Posts: 31,494
Finally able to put this together.

Barring some concerted and organized opposition, Lansing, Michigan is gearing up either late this year or early next year to adopt a Form-Base Code (FBC) for city zoning, replacing the traditional Euclidian zoning. This all came out of the Design Lansing Comprehensive Plan, the city's most recent master plan released in 2012, which called for the replacement of Lansing's zoning ordinance to speed up the transformation of the city's land-use.

Form-Base Code elevates the design of a structure above a defined land-use for the parcel on which is sits, which is the opposite of traditional single-district zoning. The benefits the city lists for the switch are that it increases the tax base, supports transit choice and levels the playing field for pedestrians in more parts of the city

What this plan will generally do:

- Reduce setbacks, parking (in commercial/retail districts), increase max (and adds minimum) heights, and allow for far more mixed-usage (by right) than the current zoning code.

- While it allows for more mixed-use, it also implement higher design standards, and really just add design standards to make them less subjective during a review of a project. This will actually have the effect from a NIMBY's point-of-view of retaining the character of older and historic neighborhoods and structures, with the trade-off for developmers of allowing more usages on more of the city's land.

- Allow changes in a plot's use without having to go through the rezoning process.

- For developers, it speeds up the process of development, as a design is required up front rather than a use and then a rough idea of a design.

- Finally, the code is easier to read and thus more predictable for developers.

Specifically for Lansing by-right, conditional and special usages have been determined by the type of street a lot is on:

Streets by NewCityOne, on Flickr

Map of new district:

Lansing Form-Based Code by NewCityOne, on Flickr

How this works:

How by NewCityOne, on Flickr

And, examples of building-types for the districts:

Residential by NewCityOne, on Flickr

Suburban Commercial by NewCityOne, on Flickr

Multi-Use by NewCityOne, on Flickr

For a full list of uses and design standards:

FBC Introduction, User Guide, and Form Based Zoning Code
Where the trees are the right height
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