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Policies and Strategies in Shrinking Cities

April 4, 2013 in Mahoning, Planning and Zoning, Quality Connected Places

On Thursday, March 28, the Youngstown Neighborhood Development Corporation, Technical University of Dortmund, Germany (TUD), and German Marshall Fund (GMF) hosted a workshop in Youngstown titled: Policies and Strategies in Shrinking Cities: The Case of Youngstown, Ohio. The event was attended by more than 60 people including: stakeholders from throughout Youngstown and the Mahoning Valley and representatives from the cities of Cleveland, Pittsburgh, and Akron.

The invitation only workshop included a site visit of abandoned industrial sites with potential for reuse, an expert panel discussion, and presentation of redevelopment ideas from urban planning students from the Technical University of Dortmund.

The expert panel discussion included Alan Mallach, Brookings Institution; Lavea Brachman, Greater Ohio Policy Center; Professor Thorsten Wiechmann, Technical University of Dortmund, Germany, and Ian Beniston, YNDC. The students’ redevelopment ideas included opportunities to reconnect Youngstown to its riverfront and industrial heritage and integrated best practice ideas from the Ruhr Valley in Germany. A final plan based on their work will be released this summer.

To view the presentation visit YNDC.

To learn more please contact the YNDC via phone at 330.480.0423 or via email info@yndc.org!

Interested in looking at how we currently are using land in Northeast Ohio?

March 26, 2013 in Planning and Zoning, Tool

As part of the Vibrant NEO 2040 initiative, NEOSCC has completed the first-ever existing land use map for the 12-county region. This parcel-based map was built on detailed real estate information provided by the region’s 12 County Auditors and County Fiscal Officers. This map can be scaled to the size of individual communities and counties and can be filtered to show in clear detail the location specific land uses, such as industrial, commercial and park land.  Because it is based on current real estate data, this map provides a real-time picture of vacant urbanized land throughout the region.

Zoning Map

NEOSCC has also created a parcel-based zoning map for the 12-county Northeast Ohio region from the most current information supplied by each of the 393 jurisdictions in the region. This map can be scaled to the size of individual communities and counties and can be filtered to show in clear detail the location of specific zoning classifications, such as residential, industrial, commercial, and agriculture.  The GIS data behind the maps is included by county and each file contains the local zoning, local land use, NEOSCC zoning and NEOSCC land use codes.

To download pdf’s of these two maps visit our Tools and Resources page.

Mobility of NEO Young and Middle-Aged Adults

February 19, 2013 in Housing, News, Planning and Zoning

While Cleveland’s overall population has declined 17% from 2000 to 2010, past research by the Center on Urban Poverty and Community Development has demonstrated population gains for certain age demographics in certain regional localities. Mapping Human Capital: Where Northeast Ohio’s Young and Middle-Age Adults Are Locating, the second Briefly Stated report released by the Poverty Center in 2013, expands on the initial research by examining the mobility of young and middle-age adults in Northeastern Ohio.

Using data from the 2000 and 2010 Census, recent Poverty Center researcher Richey Piiparinen determined that young adults (aged 25 to 34) are moving into certain Cuyahoga County municipalities and neighborhoods, especially in the core of Cleveland. Certain minority groups represent some of the highest growth in these localities. These inner-ring communities are recognized for their culture and walkability. It is possible that these characteristics are attractive to younger adults.

Data from this report was recently used in a story by the Cleveland Plain Dealer and will appear in an upcoming article.

In 2012 the Center released a Briefly Stated report Not Dead Yet – The Infill of Cleveland’s Urban Core, originally completed for the Urban Institute, which showed a gain of young adults moving into the urban core. The influx of human capital should be understood so strategy can increase the in-migrating flow.

 

Download the report and its related appendices to read more.

The Center on Urban Poverty and Community Development is a research center at the Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences, a graduate school of social work at Case Western Reserve University.

University Park Alliance: 2013 Urban Innovator Speaker Series

January 30, 2013 in News, Planning and Zoning, Quality Connected Places, Summit

2013 Urban Innovators Speaker Series
Time: 6:30 PM to 8:00 PM
Date(s): 01-30-2013 to 03-20-2013
Price: Free

Reserve now! Seating will be limited to 100 per presentation and reservations are required. Call 330-777-2070 or email info@upakron.com

January 30th and February 20th Speaker Series programs will be held at the Andrew Jackson House – Ballroom at 277 E. Mill Street, Akron, OH 44308, the corner of E. Mill and Union Streets.

March 20th Speaker Series program will be held at Quaker Square at the corner of E. Mill Street and N. Broadway, Akron, OH 44308

January 30th:
Redesigning the Urban Landscape: Developing a Natural Sense of Place – Sabrena Schweyer & Samuel Salsbury, Salsbury-Schweyer, Inc.

February 20th:
Transforming Vacant Spaces: Creating Value from Vacancy in the Urban Footprint – Terry Schwarz, Cleveland Urban Design Collaborative

March 20th:
Cohousing: A Unique Approach to Alternative Housing – Sharon Sykora, Ph.D., Slippery Rock University

UPA’s Urban Innovators Speaker Series features world-class thinkers and practitioners presenting creative approaches to revitalizing our city center. Historically cities have been the engines of the U.S. economy and today play an even greater role in fostering economic growth as incubators of innovation. This series provides a platform for the sharing of best practices and the exploration of ideas to transform thinking and accelerate the kinds of core city investment that will lead to competitive success for Greater Akron in the new urban economy.

The Series is presented by University Park Alliance and underwritten by the Greater Akron Chamber.

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Attention Developers and Investors: Smart Growth and Economic Success

January 16, 2013 in News, Planning and Zoning, Quality Connected Places

Smart Growth and Economic Success

Smart growth development is compact and walkable and provides a diverse range of choices in land uses, building types, transportation, homes, workplace locations, and stores. Such development projects are attractive to private-sector interests because they can find a ready market and compete financially. They appeal to local governments because they can be the building blocks of a growing economy and high-quality, economically sustainable neighborhoods and communities while also helping to create a cleaner, healthier environment. Some of the advantages for developers, communities, and local governments associated with smart growth include:

  • Compact development: Using land and resources more efficiently and redeveloping old or neglected areas while retaining existing infrastructure can create economic advantages for real estate developers and investors, businesses, and local governments. Compact development can generate more revenue per acre because it uses land more efficiently. It can reduce the costs of land and infrastructure for individual projects and the costs of providing fire and police protection, utilities, schools, and other public amenities. By locating companies closer together, compact development can create a density of employment that increases economic productivity and attracts additional investment.
  • Walkability: Walkable neighborhoods have well-connected streets and a mix of land uses near each other, making not only walking but also bicycling and transit more convenient and appealing. Projects in walkable neighborhoods command a price premium, earning real estate developers and investors a higher return on investment. Improvements to streets and sidewalks to make them more appealing to pedestrians can benefit local businesses by attracting more customers. In turn, local governments benefit through additional property and sales tax revenue.
  • Range of choices: People and businesses value places that bring together a variety of activities to create vibrant environments. The demand for such places exceeds the supply. Many people in the two largest demographic cohorts, baby boomers and their children, are particularly interested in lively neighborhoods with their daily needs close by. Communities with access to transit also help people reduce their transportation costs, enabling them to save money or spend more on their homes, entertainment, or other things they value. Changing demographics will likely further increase the demand for smart growth development over the coming decades; developers, investors, businesses, and local governments who respond to these market preferences could reap economic advantages.

Smart Growth and Economic Success is the first in a series of reports from EPA’s Smart Growth Program designed to inform developers, businesses, local government, and other groups about the benefits of smart growth development. This report incorporates feedback from a one-day workshop in December 2011 when business leaders, real estate developers, and economic development professionals came together to share their thoughts and make suggestions about how to expand on work in this area. Additional reports will build on this work, exploring how real estate developers and investors can overcome real and perceived barriers to benefit from infill opportunities, how decisions about where to locate will impact the bottom lines of businesses, and why smart growth strategies are good fiscal policy for local governments.Visit the EPA website to download a PDF of the Report.

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Learn and Act: Sustainable Planning and Zoning in Stark County

November 2, 2012 in News, Planning and Zoning, Stark, Toolkiit

Throughout Northeast Ohio, different organizations are integrating sustainability into their approaches to planning, operations and decision-making. As part of a recent Energy Efficiency & Conservation Block Grant, Stark County Regional Planning Commission (SCRPC) created the Sustainable Planning and Zoning Handbook.  Created in 2011, SCRPC developed a tool that provides principles, examples and approaches to planning and zoning.

Transportation Page, Sustainable Planning and Zoning Handbook

SCRPC describes the handbook as…

The purpose of this handbook is to provide local communities with guiding principles to assist them in becoming more sustainable. Each section will briefly cover different steps that communities can take to achieve this goal. Examples and/or resources of what other communities are doing will also be provided in each section. The appendix of this document contains sustainability-designed, model zoning ordinances that can be tailored to conform to individual zoning resolutions. Please note that not every principle in this handbook may apply to every community. Do keep in mind, however, that sustainable planning means planning for the future, not just the present; just because an item may not apply today doesn’t mean that it might not be applicable at a later date.

Visit the Stark County Regional Planning Commission website to learn more.

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