Today, the Form-Based Codes Institute at Smart Growth America honors three communities for stepping up to placemaking with the adoption of some of the most exemplary form-based codes in the country. The Driehaus Form-Based Codes Award is awarded by FBCI with the generous support of the Richard H. Driehaus Charitable Lead Trust.
A century of traditional land-use practices has ingrained inequities deep into communities across America. We’ve produced sprawling, auto-oriented development that has also separated people based on wealth, ethnicity, and race. Form-based zoning is well-positioned to compliment equity-driven public policies, while also enabling walkable, human-scaled development that residents and businesses love.
Looking back at 100-plus submissions for the Driehaus Form-Based Codes Award over the years reveals how the practice of form-based coding has matured and evolved. The quality of submissions has improved since the early years and municipal planning staff are increasingly engaged in drafting codes for their communities. It’s clear that form-based codes are growing in popularity and in many contexts they are being paired with policies to achieve more equitable development.
It’s time to pick the nation’s top form-based code. While this type of zoning is catching on, some form-based codes can miss the mark if they deviate from best practices. That’s where the Form-Based Codes Institute’s standards—and the Driehaus Award—come in.
The Form-Based Codes Institute highlights a great form-based code (or codes) each year with the Richard H. Driehaus Form-Based Code Award to show what’s possible with good zoning. If you know of a form-based code that is promoting great development and accessible streets, nominate it for the 11th annual Driehaus Award.
Conventional land use regulations have contributed to a great divide in our country, producing sprawling places that are marked by a stark separation of both uses and people. But form-based zoning is emerging as a creative tool for cities to remedy the inequities often produced by the conventional system.
After two years of robust education and community engagement, the City of Las Vegas is ready to implement their downtown master plan, using a new a form-based zoning code. The city credits our Form-Based Codes Institute’s comprehensive three-course curriculum for helping to achieve this first-of-a-kind achievement in Nevada, which city officials believe will lead to a compact, vibrant downtown to support future growth.
Zoning codes are the unseen, yet decisive guiding force that can either help or hinder the creation of great, walkable, people-scaled places. This primer from the Form-Based Codes Institute gives you the basics on form-based codes: what they are, where they work, and how they can help create and sustain great places.
Smart Growth America continually pursues new angles to broaden its ability to create strong communities. By adding the Form-Based Codes Institute (FBCI) to its growing arsenal of programs, SGA can bring more comprehensive assistance to communities by addressing the regulatory framework that often limits smart growth—the zoning code.
This month on the podcast Building Better Communities with Transit we’re chatting with Susan Henderson of PlaceMakers about the use and benefits of form-based codes. We talk about the focus of these codes (the public realm where people gather and interact with each other), how they are used to support transit, and how a code can affect the streets around them.