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April 30, 2009: City promotes sustainable redevelopment of Corporate Park

At a workshop held on April 27, the City Commission reviewed a proposed Land Development Code Amendment that would revise certain aspects of the City’s Corporate Park Code. The amendments are aimed at encouraging sustainable redevelopment of vacant and underutilized parcels within the Corporate Park, which as of April 1, 2009 included 345 businesses with active licenses.

The proposed amendments, which the City Commission will formally consider at a Commission meeting on May 5, focus primarily on permitted and conditional uses. Most significantly, a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED)-based zoning incentive was created to encourage redevelopment by allowing some reductions in setbacks and landscaping in exchange for development that is designed to achieve LEED Silver certification.

"The City is intent on growing the tax base in the Corporate Park by revamping land development regulations to encourage additional, environmentally responsible development and redevelopment. This outcome represents a successful collaboration between the City and the Corporate Park property owners," City Manager Michael S. Levinson said.

The City collaborated with the Property Owners Association on the zoning incentives in order to allow developers to maximize square footage and make their projects economically viable. The changes presented include allowing hotels to increase the maximum height from 50 feet to 75 feet for flexibility in design; clarifying specific employee-based offices in the Code; and limiting new self-storage development to the interior of the Park and grandfathering existing development. Service-based uses have also been proposed along the perimeter of the Park to add amenities that will meet Park employers’ needs.

Staff recommended approving the amendments to increase competitiveness of the Corporate Park, as the proposed modifications are consistent with the City’s Comprehensive Plan. Newly developed properties would contribute to the economic growth of the City and promote redevelopment of older portions of the Park, as well as allow additional development potential while maintaining high aesthetic standards.

“LEED incentive-based zoning encourages future economic growth by protecting the environment, conserving natural resources, and promoting public health, safety, and welfare,” City Commissioner Roy Gold added.

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