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Thread: Adaptive reuse ordinances?

  1. #1
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    Adaptive reuse ordinances?

    Hi all,
    I'm interested in interesting approaches local governments, particularly via zoning and land-use planning, are taking towards encouraging adaptive reuse of their existing building stock. What changes are you/they making in codes? Are you/they using incentives or credits? What are the goals and motives? Problems? What conditions are you dealing with?

    I'm working on a case study of the City of Los Angeles' Adaptive Reuse Ordinance (ARO) which allowed historic commercial and light industrial buildings in the struggling central downtown business district to be converted to residential and residential/live-work/retail. The ARO encouraged preserving the existing built structures by relaxing seismic codes, mandating only that the existing amount of parking be maintained (exemption from existing city minimum parking requirements for housing units), and by providing a by-right process for permitting these types of buildings rather than requiring variances.

    I've found quite a bit about LA's program, but I'd love to get some other perspectives or leads on the issue.

    Thanks!

  2. #2

    City of Phoenix Adaptive Reuse Program - New Business in Old Buildings

    The City of Phoenix recently expanded their adaptive reuse program. From the city's website: "The Adaptive Reuse Program, which began as a pilot program in April 2008, is today one of the most comprehensive of its kind in the nation, offering guidance, expedited timeframes and reduced costs to customers looking to “recycle” older buildings for new business uses. An example is modifying an historic, single-family residence for use as a restaurant. Program participants saved two weeks to three months time and $2,000 to $40,000 during the development process."
    More details here.

  3. #3
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    Thanks so much, YuriArtibise. Phoenix's program is very complex - quite interesting! Do you happen to have any insight or knowledge on how the program is received and any unexpected (good or bad) effects? What their process of adoption was and how they decided on ARP?

    One interesting bit from LA's ARP is that Downtown LA has experienced an unexpected sub-market for its existing parking supply. The developers still wanted to provide parking to their tenants but it often wasn't feasible to add it to the older and historic buildings so many of them lease parking from nearby structures that were underused. And of course, there are concerns that it hasn't generated enough affordable housing in the face of rising property values.

    Thanks again!

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