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Board discusses zoning for city center
by Savannah Weeks
January 22, 2013 11:35 AM | 1141 views | 0 0 comments | 7 7 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Sandy Springs Design Review Board members are concerned some design details may fall through the cracks in the city center, under Boston-based design firm Goody Clancy’s recommendation to develop the center under a form-based code.

Form-based code is often used in areas that are developed with the intent of being walkable areas, as single-use zoning regulations often inhibit dense, walkable centers.

A form-based code is established as a way to achieve a specific urban form by controlling physical form.

“Anything required for that business will be in that code,” Manager of Planning and Zoning Patrice Dickerson said to board members at the board’s meeting Tuesday at City Hall. “It will take away rezoning requirements, as well.”

Said board member G. Melton Mobley, “I think it does reduce citizen review, because it reduces the number of boards it comes before.”

“The purpose of it is to include what the city wants it to look like — that will be in the ordinance,” replied Dickerson.

“Right, but should something happen [where the code is not followed], it will be after the fact and there will be nothing we can do about it,” said Mobley.

Board member Charlie Roberts spoke on behalf of the code.

“Form-based zoning is really great for this area,” he said. “It requires height and mass, which is good. But you can’t regulate color — that’s where the design review board is needed. It’s a wonderful starter. The idea is, as long as the form’s right in the central city, the retail will be on the ground, so what’s above is less important.”

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