Form-Based Codes Institute at Smart Growth America

The Denver Commons Code

Denver Seal

The City of Denver’s Riverfront Commons Form-Based Code is a national model for a groundbreaking early form-based code with excellent built results. The visioning and intent statement were so fine they made a convincing case for public and private support of the code. Area by area, the intent was clearly outlined. The public realm requirements in the code were provided in great detail. A distinction was made between these required standards and additional guidelines on each subject. This code could be emulated at any scale. While this code was adopted as a PUD using “design guidelines” language, its essential elements could be replicated today as a form-based zoning district.


Code Documents:


Additional Information

Denver Commons Website

Code Categories

Physical Contexts:
Organizing Principles:
Implementation Methods:
Special Features:
Driehaus Awards:
Award Recipient
Year: 2010