Form-Based Codes Institute at Smart Growth America

FBC 101: The ABCs of Form-Based Codes Treasure Coast, Florida January 14th


FBC 101: The ABCs of Form-Based Codes

Monday, January 14th, 2019

Jupiter Community Center 
Meeting Room A/B
200 Military Trail
Jupiter, FL 33458

Eligible for 8 AICP CM

FBC101 is an intensive one-day class, in which participants learn how form-based codes are essentially different from conventional land use regulation and how they have evolved to solve many of the problems created by conventional zoning. The course provides an overview of the process of creating a form-based code, moving from an initial place-based community vision to an adopted code and beyond. Instructors combine lecture and classroom discussion with a hands-on exercise in observing community built form and shaping public space. Participants also learn about common misconceptions about form-based codes and the legal basis for form-based codes. This class is prerequisite for FBC 201 (urban design) and FBC 301 (code implementation). Participants who attend all three courses receive a certificate of completion from FBCI.

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Comfort Inn & Suites

6752 W Indiantown Road

Jupiter FL



Fairfield Inn & Suites

6748 W, FL-706 (Indiantown Road)

Jupiter, FL



The following is a final class agenda.

8:00 – 8:30 AM Registration and Light Breakfast

8:30 – 8:45 AM Welcome and Introductions – All Instructors

Instructors will introduce themselves and the Form-Based Codes Institute and provide background on why communities may decide to use form-based codes.  Participants will introduce themselves comment on why they are attending the class and what they hope to learn.

8:45 – 9:45 AM Form-Based Code Principles and Components: A Tool for Shaping Community Form and Character and Smarter Growth – Bill Spikowski

The session will provide an overview of the differences between form-based codes and conventional zoning; the most common applications for form-based codes; common barriers to traditional urbanism; and basic  principles of urban form. The session will highlight the need for zoning reform and how form-based codes have become the paradigm for putting form first and relegating use to secondary status.

9:45 – 10:30 AM Steps and Components for Preparing a Form-Based Code – Nancy Stroud & Bill Spikowski

This session will explore the public engagement that is needed to reach a shared community vision of physical form, which is an essential step in the creation of a form-based code. Instructors will explain the various types of form-based codes and the components of a form-based code such as regulating plans, building form standards, and street standards.

10:30 – 10:45 AM Break

10:45 AM – 11:30 AM Legal Aspects of Form-Based Code – Nancy Stroud

A broad understanding of applicable law is essential when adopting a form-based code.  This session will provide an overview of some of the general principles for regulatory amendments; review some important considerations for the process of adopting a code; and present ideas for how to minimize the potential for legal challenges.

11:30 AM – 12:15 PM Common Misunderstandings about Form-Based Codes – Nancy Stroud & Bill Spikowski

In this session, the instructors will address common misunderstandings about form-based coding and how to address them. Topics will include: complexity and flexibility in form-based codes, the role of consultants in drafting a code, regulation of uses in an FBC, guidelines versus regulations, the potential for displacement, and the degree to which architecture and design can be regulated under an FBC.

12:15 – 1:15 PM Lunch provided by TCRPC

1:15 – 2:00 PM Making Things Easier for DevelopMENT, Rather than DeveloPERS – Frank Starkey

Unlike the historic growth of cities, today’s extensive regulations require professional developers and a bevy of consultants. This impacts urban form, economics, democratic participation and the government’s ability to protect the common good. Form-based codes are a key tool for re-democratizing the buildings of towns and cities.

2:00 – 3:45 PM Documentation and Analysis Exercise – Dana Little

In this exercise, participants will observe, document and discuss different contexts and levels of urbanism; how elements such as streets, frontages, setbacks and building forms become the foundation of a legally enforceable form-based code; and how to translate desired images into legally enforceable zoning codes and regulations of the public realm. Be ready to draw, understanding the details of built places and how they relate back to code content.

3:45 – 4:00 PM Break

4:00 – 4:45 PM Getting Ready for a Form-Based Code – Nancy Stroud & Bill Spikowski

Form-based codes are a new concept for many communities and local planners often need to build understanding and support before drafting and adopting a new code. Using case studies from their own experience, the instructors will speak about specific steps local planners have taken to prepare citizens, political leaders and their own staff for the transition to an FBC. This session will conclude with a summary of technical resources that are available to communities wishing to embark on a form-based code.

4:45 – 5:15 PM Lessons Learned and Q&A – All Instructors

5:15 PM Adjourn


FBCI draws upon national experts, including urban designers and planners with broad experience in all aspects of form-based coding.

Dana Little has nearly 30 years of experience in the fields of city planning, urban design and architectural design projects throughout the United States and Canada. Mr. Little has successfully lead dozens of project teams comprised of diverse professionals and representatives from multiple government agencies to focus on long-range planning efforts, revitalization master plans, architectural building designs, and Form-Based coding efforts. Mr. Little has managed projects with the firms of Dover-Kohl and Partners, Gibbs Planning Group, and Duany Plater-Zyberk and Company and has participated in over 90 week-long planning charrettes. As the Urban Design Director for the Treasure Coast, Mr. Little focuses on projects that range in scale from regional master plans to neighborhood infill and Complete Street projects. Mr. Little is a Certified City Planner and has a professional degree in Architecture from the University of Miami. Dana lives in historic West Palm Beach and has also served on that city’s Historic Preservation Board.
Bill Spikowski
Bill Spikowski, FAICP, is a veteran advisor to local governments and a pioneer in the development of form-based codes. He’s prepared community plans, redevelopment plans, and codes for cities and counties that aren’t willing to settle for today’s sprawling development patterns. He’s become an expert in using form-based codes to translate bold visions of the future into an integral part of local regulations. Bill is a frequent lecturer on innovative planning and coding techniques and was a founding board member of the Form-Based Codes Institute. He is a regular instructor at FBCI workshops across the country. Prior to forming his consulting firm in 1992, Bill served as growth management director for Lee County, Florida. He has also served on the Fort Myers Planning Board and was a co-founder of the Calusa Land Trust & Nature Preserve.
Frank Starkey
Frank Starkey, CNU-A, is co-founder (with his brother, Trey) of Longleaf, a 568-acre Traditional Neighborhood Development just northwest of Tampa, Florida. From 2005 through 2012 Frank and Trey oversaw planning, entitlements and marketing of Starkey Ranch, a 2,500-acre multi-use development in Florida. Frank is the founder of People Places, LLC, a real estate and development company, which is pursuing infill and redevelopment opportunities in various towns in Florida. He has served as Chairman of the Board of The Seaside Institute and as president of the National Town Builders Association. He was the first Developer in Residence at University of Miami’s Masters in Real Estate + Urbanism (MRED+U) program. Frank holds undergraduate and professional degrees in architecture from Rice University, is CNU Accredited, and an active member of ULI and Leadership Florida.
Nancy Stroud
Nancy Stroud, Esq, FAICP, is a planning and development lawyer in Florida primarily representing local governments in efforts to create walkable and vibrant communities. She is a recognized expert in the preparation and implementation of form based codes. She was the legal consultant in the award-winning team that created the Miami21 form based code, winner of the 2010 Dreihaus Form-based Codes Award (Paul Crawford Distinction for a Ground Breaking Code), and the 2011 American Planning Association National Planning Excellence Award for Best Practice. Nancy writes and lectures on planning law issues, and is co-author of a leading law school treatise Planning and Control of Land Development. She graduated from the University of North Carolina with a law degree and master of regional planning, and is a Fellow of the American Institute of Certified Planners College of Fellows.
To see all FBCI instructors, please visit our website,

Registration Fees

TCRPC Members: $125*

*Please insert discount code at check out.

Public Sector: $275

Private Sector: $325

We accept Visa, MasterCard, and Discover. 

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