Community Development Code Update

Forward SGF calls for a full update to the City’s Land Development Code and Ordinances to align regulations with the recommendations contained in each chapter. The Comprehensive Plan is a policy guide that should inform decision making for years to come, but it is not regulatory. The City needs to update its development regulations to support the Plan’s vision.

The City of Springfield has entered a contract with the urban planning firm, Multistudio, to facilitate and draft new Development Codes, which will provide the City with the regulatory framework essential to implement many of the recommendations outlined in the Comprehensive Plan that will impact expansion of uses and quality of place enhancements for (re)development projects.

Code consultant, Multistudio, has recently completed the research and analysis phase of the code update process, which included reviewing and studying the City of Springfield’s existing codes, policies, and district standards, as well as conducting interviews. The analysis phase produced the Fiscal Impact Analysis, the Code Review Summaries, and the Development Pattern Analysis documents, all of which can be found below.

After the analysis phase of the code update process was concluded, the consultant began the discussion phase on January 25, 2024 with an initial meeting of the volunteer Place Teams and a public open house. These events were an opportunity for both members of the public and individuals that expressed interest in being involved in the process to learn how the consultant is using the vision of Forward SGF to update the City’s development codes. The Precedent Studies that set the framework for these events and other conversations with the public, can be found by clicking on the image above. In addition, the presentation boards that were at the open house can be found below.

Fiscal Impact Analysis

As part of their research and study, the consulting team completed a fiscal impact audit and infrastructure liability analysis. This analysis is used to characterize the economic consequences of Springfield’s existing codes, and inform discussions regarding changes in development patterns, intensities, placetypes and use groups. It is also being used to guide potential codes and standards for development, and the infrastructure needed to support it.

On November 14, 2023 and February 29, 2024 Joe Minicozzi AICP with Urban3 presented a two-part Economics of Community Design series which outlined the influence that growth, infrastructure, and development decisions have on the City’s fiscal future. Highlights of the February 29th presentation can be found below. The final report can be found by clicking on the image above. To view the recordings from these events, navigate to the presentations tab at the top of this page.

Code Review Summaries

Multistudio has recently completed a Code Review Summaries document which provides the assigned Place Teams with a common starting point for their conversations. This includes a brief introduction of each topic, how the topic ties in with Forward SGF‘s goals and Placetypes, an overview of how Springfield’s current code addresses the topic, and suggested discussion questions and summaries of relevant discussion topics. To view the Code Review Summaries document, click on the image.

Development Pattern Analysis

The Development Pattern Analysis, together with Urban3’s Fiscal Impact Analysis, and the Code Review Summaries, will inform the Place Teams’ discussions about the community’s development code priorities. Based on the Code Review Summaries, the Place Teams’ conversations will focus on the four topics of Housing & Neighborhoods, Mixed Use Destinations, Multimodal Transportation, and Natural Features & Environment. All of these topics will be framed through the lens of Quality of Place. Finally, these community conversations will inform the final Community Development Code for the City of Springfield.

Development patterns directly impact how “Quality of Place” is felt throughout a city: affecting how the people of Springfield experience their communities, live in their neighborhoods, and move through the street network. As the Springfield community begins the process of defining the types of places they want to encourage and reinforce through the Community Development Code, this analysis will help stakeholders think about the design elements that are necessary to create and nurture those places. Click on the image to view the Development Pattern Analysis.

Code Update Presentation with Multistudio – March 5, 2024

Code Update Presentation Slides

Joe Minicozzi AICP, Economics of Community Design Part II – February 29, 2024

Economics of Community Design Part II Presentation Slides

Economics of Community Development Final Report

Community Development Code Update Initiative Open House – January 25, 2024
Joe Minicozzi AICP, Economics of Community Design Part I – November 14, 2023

Economics of Community Design Part I Presentation Slides

Code Update Initial Presentation with Multistudio – July 11, 2023

Chapter 5 – Land Use & Development

  • Land Use Planning Framework – Responding to Trends and Land Development Pressures
    • Increased use flexibility that promotes redevelopment and revitalization will need to be balanced by regulatory codes that promote and emphasize quality design and construction that is pedestrian focused and has a greater experience factor.
    • Future code changes will need to support the implementation of planning that promotes the development of places with a wide array of convenient services in proximity to amenity-rich, attractive, inviting, integrated corridors and districts that are within walking distance of neighborhood, trails, parks, and mixed-use centers with diverse housing options.
    • “Plans and code changes will also need to champion alignment of subsidies and other public investments and improvements with land planning to ensure housing and economic development projects are permitted and supported in places where they are best suited and equitably dispersed across the city.

Chapter 7 – Neighborhoods & Housing

  • Goal 3.  Revitalize Springfield’s Neighborhoods
    • (3.5) Champion Safe, Healthy, Liveable Housing and Neighborhoods
      Chapter 8 – Economic Development
  • Goal 1.  Redefine Springfield’s Narrative as a Major Competitor and Leader in the Regional Market
    • (1.3) Update the Code

Chapter 8 – Economic Development

  • Goal 1.  Redefine Springfield’s Narrative as a Major Competitor and Leader in the Regional Market
    • (1.3) Update the Code

Chapter 9 – Transportation & Mobility

  • Goal 3. Integrate Transportation and Land Use to Support Mobility and Placemaking
    • (3.3) Enhance Community Character and Placemaking

Chapter 10 – Infrastructure & Community Facilities

  • Goal 3. Develop Infrastructure and Community Facilities in a Sustainable Manner
    • (3.1) Apply Sustainable Development Practices

Chapter 12 – Subarea Plans

  • Glenstone Avenue Subarea Plan – Framework recommendations
  • Trafficway Street Subarea Plan – Framework recommendations
  • Chestnut Expressway Subarea Plan – Framework recommendations
  • Lake Springfield Subarea Plan – Framework recommendations
  • Boonville Avenue Subarea Plan – Framework recommendations

Chapter 13 – Commercial Street Plan

  • Goal 4.  Build on Commercial Street’s maker ethos and strength in artisan manufacturing district
    • (4.2) Ensure land use codes allow for flexible maker spaces and artisan manufacturing uses throughout the district.

Chapter 15 – Implementation

  • Integrate Land Use, Placetypes, and Zoning
    • Create a strategy for updating the City Land Development Regulations and Zoning Map based on the Placemaking approach
  • Implementation through regulation
    • Implementation of interim amendments – Redevelopment on the Edges

To learn more about the Land Development code, visit Chapter 5 of the Plan on the Resources page.