Adapting Form-Based Codes to Local Conditions

Bob Bengford discusses the feasibility of updating land use/design codes using a form-based approach for planners in the Northwest.

Bengford writes, "While form-based codes have been used successfully in other parts of the Country for three decades, they have only recently been applied in the Northwest. One possible explanation is the perceived difficulty in adapting form-based codes to the unique local contexts (both physical and political). The Northwest's diverse physical terrain, lack of established desirable development patterns, a desire for a broad range of architectural styles, and the fear of giving up permitted use lists are all real and perceived challenges in applying form-based codes. Perhaps another barrier is the lack of first-hand experience in drafting, adopting and implementing form-based codes."

Thanks to Byron Katsuyama

Full Story: A Hybrid Approach to Form-Based Codes in the Northwest

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