Missing Middle Housing, Form-Based Code Added to the Zoning Menu in Iowa City

The Iowa City Planning Commission approved a rezoning amendment that will allow new missing middle density and implement a form-based code for the city's South District. The city could expand the concepts as it expands the city in the future.

Read Time: 1 minute

October 6, 2021, 10:00 AM PDT

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell


"Iowa City's long-term plans to rezone and develop 900 acres of land in the South District have passed the Planning and Zoning Commission, setting the stage for a broader debate about new development with the City Council in early October," reports George Shillcock.

The Iowa City Planning Commission approved both an amendment to the South District Comprehensive Plan and an amendment adding form-based standards for new development. The former amendment also "follows form-based standards," according to Shillcock.

Supporters of the zoning changes "are hopeful these changes could be a boon for new affordable housing, population growth and development in the South District, and in other parts of the city in the future," reports Shillcock.

A previous, paywalled article introduced the concept of missing middle housing as an tool for housing affordability. Plans to add form-based code elements to the zoning for the South District have been under consideration for years, according to a July 2019 article by Zachary Oren Smith (not paywalled).

According to Shillcock, Iowa City could expand the use of form-based codes to unincorporated parts of Johnson County targeted by the city for annexation.

A separate article published by the Congress for the New Urbanism, published after Shillcock's coverage, also shares the news of the South District form-based code.

Wednesday, September 29, 2021 in Iowa City Press Citizen

Green bike lane with flexible delineators and textures paint in Hoboken, New Jersey

America’s Best New Bike Lanes

PeopleForBikes highlights some of the most exciting new bike infrastructure projects completed in 2022.

January 31, 2023 - PeopleforBikes

Walkable, mixed-use neighborhood in Barcelona, Spain

Conspiracy Theorists Discover the 15-Minute City

USA Today debunks the false claim that the United Nations’ call for enabling 15-minute cities is a coded plan to institute ‘climate change lockdowns.’

February 8, 2023 - USA Today

Aerial view of MBTA commuter rail station in Concord, Massachusetts among green trees

Massachusetts Zoning Reform Law Reaches First Deadline

Cities and towns had until January 31 to submit their draft plans for rezoning areas near transit stations to comply with a new state law.

February 1, 2023 - Streetsblog Mass

Washington

Washington Could Legalize Single-Staircase Buildings

Supporters of ‘point access blocks,’ which are common in Europe and other parts of the world, say the design maximizes living space and lowers the cost of construction.

February 8 - The Urbanist

View of downtown San Francisco from top of windy street at sunset with Coit Tower in distance

San Francisco Housing Plan Gets State Approval

The city cleared a major hurdle as its housing plan, which paves the way for 82,000 new homes by 2030, is certified by the state.

February 8 - KALW

Green Line, Los Angeles

Rail Transit Plans Would Connect L.A.’s South Bay to the Regional Rail System

Two new transit extensions promise several new routes for South Bay residents to access the Los Angeles region’s transit system.

February 8 - The Source