Host a class on form-based codes in your community!

Photo by Joe Kohl

Drum roll please…We are delighted to announce that the Form-Based Codes Institute’s (FBCI) highly popular classes are once again available to be hosted in-person! FBCI, a program of Smart Growth America, invites state and municipal government agencies, regional councils, and other land use and development organizations to host a class this summer or fall. Classes are designed to bring planning professionals and community leaders up to speed on the principles, key elements, adoption, and administration of form-based zoning codes.

The Form-Based Codes Institute has developed a 3-course curriculum of one introductory and two advanced courses. The introductory course provides a basic yet comprehensive understanding of form-based codes—their history, components, legal underpinnings, and case studies illustrating common applications. The advanced courses, which may be taken in either order, teach advanced skills in code creation and implementation, and include “hands on” interactive exercises. FBCI awards a certificate of completion to individuals who complete all three.

To host a class, any locality, regional organization, state agency, or other entity can contact Jamie Zouras at [email protected]

About the classes

FBC 101: The ABCs of Form-Based Codes provides a basic yet comprehensive understanding of form-based codes—how they differ from conventional codes, where they are most effective, how they ensure good placemaking, and how to communicate their benefits to community decision makers. The 8-hr class—offered virtually or in person—includes exemplary case studies illustrating common applications and is a prerequisite for FBC 201 and FBC 301. Learn more.

FBC 201: Placemaking with Form-Based Codes is a two-day class where participants learn the technical aspects of drafting a form-based code with an emphasis on how predictable design, physical character, and context can be coded to ensure good placemaking and walkability. The class includes many case study examples, as well as “hands-on” interactive exercises. Learn more.

FBC 301: Adopting and Administering a Form-Based Code walks participants through the process of adopting and implementing a form-based code, how to integrate a new form-based code with an existing code, the fundamentals and common pitfalls of adopting and administering a code, and how to evaluate a proposed project under the code. Learn more.

What else do I get from the classes?

  • Class instructors are nationally prominent form-based coding practitioners—professionals in the fields of planning, architecture, urban design, and land use law
  • All classes are eligible for AICP CM credits
  • Participants who complete all three classes receive an FBCI Certificate of Completion

“Few understood the possibilities of a form-based code when the City of Las Vegas completed its downtown vision. There was hesitation and misunderstanding amid much-needed change. It made all the difference when Lisa Wise Consulting rallied the city to enlist FBCI  to offer its training program. Knowledgeable instructors walked residents and elected officials through the basics of form-based codes and advanced classes exposed practitioners to the intricacies of execution. The curriculum was tremendously effective for building community buy-in, administrative capacity, and overall competence of our new form-based code.“ 

Mike Howe, City of Las Vegas Planning Section Manager, Urban Design Coordinator

Who do I contact to bring these FBCI classes to my community?

Please contact Jamie Zouras at [email protected] if you are interested in hosting a class in your community or would like to know more. 

Form-Based Codes