Form-Based Codes Institute at Smart Growth America

City of South Bend Zoning Ordinance

This citywide code is an excellent model for any city—particularly legacy cities—seeking to use code reform to promote fiscally and environmentally sustainable urban regeneration, greater housing diversity, walkable neighborhoods, and stronger urban design. The code’s helpful “how to use” guide, clean easy-to-read graphics, and logical layout make navigation easy for administrators, applicants, and citizens. The historic preservation provisions, bike and car parking standards, and clever treatment of cul-de-sacs are some of the many exemplary features. The jury also noted the equal staff-consultant partnership in drafting the code and the inclusive process used to build broad community understanding and support. This new code will have a lasting and positive transformational impact on South Bend’s future and provides many lessons for other cities considering a form-based code.

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Award Recipient
Year: 2021

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