Form-Based Codes Institute at Smart Growth America

Central Hercules Regulating Code


Located on San Pablo Bay 16 miles east of San Francisco, Hercules began as a company town for the Hercules Powder Company. Once a thriving industrial town, Hercules had begun to struggle with its modern identity, traffic, threatened environmental systems, spiraling housing costs, loss of natural open space, and needed municipal revenues. While Hercules had many residential areas, there was no longer a well-defined town center and the waterfront along San Pablo Bay, which historically was industrially developed, had lain fallow for many years. The Hercules Redevelopment Agency commissioned a study for the Central Hercules District, comprised of 427 acres of prime brownfield land at the center of the City and on the shore of the Bay. The resulting Plan for Central Hercules illustrates the primary concept of growing upon a framework of mixed-use walkable neighborhoods. The plan and street-type based regulations focus on simultaneously maximizing the sense of place and revenue-generating potential, sensitively developing the waterfront with public access, and interconnecting once-fragmented parts.


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