LanD Use sUmmarY

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wo years ago we launched an ambitious effort to reimagine the future of one of the world’s most storied and important cities. At that time, we cautioned that success doesn’t happen by chance, but that cities from around the world have learned that they must plan ahead for positive change. It was then that the Detroit Works Long term PLanning — a blueprint towards a future Detroit that works for all — was born. Many of you have been there from the beginning, inserting your passion, ideas and expertise along the way. Today we are once again asking for your input. Inside are some draft strategies for one of the main elements of the plan, Land Use. These aren’t the entirety of the strategies for Land Use, but the latest of which we need to get your feedback on. After we digest this feedback, we will complete the in-depth Long Term Strategic Framework plan in the fall. We look forward to the conversation, and a brighter future for Detroit.

For the past 60 years, Detroit has experienced sustained decline in population, employment and investment. This trend has continued to the present and is projected to continue in the future. In the last 10 years, the number of vacant units in the city has doubled while the population has declined by 25 percent. Our current population is spread across the city in a manner that cannot be sustained in the future due to the high cost of service delivery. In order to improve quality of life for Detroiters, and create a sustainable city, we must change how we use our land. The enormity of vacant and underutilized land that underlies many of Detroit’s struggles today can be a powerful tool to create a more viable, sustainable and healthy environment in the future. To achieve this goal, we need to make coordinated and strategic decisions about how we use our land, and the structures built on top of it. How buildings and functions are laid out on the land (which is sometimes called a “land use pattern”) can have a tremendous impact on the daily lives of Detroiters and on how our city spends its resources. With this in mind, the primary goal for the Land Use planning element is the development of a framework for land use decision making, ensuring an efficient coordination of how we can all invest in our natural and built environment.

This new land use direction for the city is based on four overarching transformational land use ideas: emPLoYment Districts connecteD transit netWork innovative LanDscaPes traDitionaL & innovative Urban neighborhooDs
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emPLoYment Districts

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emPLoYment Districts

We must strategically boost our employment density to fuel economic growth and investment. With job concentration, we can more effectively enhance infrastructure, manage land, demolish buildings, develop the real estate market, and improve transportation to these areas. Based on existing patterns of business activity, potential for future growth, location of key economic assets, and land availability and ownership patterns, there are seven primary employment districts and multiple secondary districts where we can concentrate growth. To read more about this transformational concept, see the “Economic Growth” summary document.

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connecteD transit netWork
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connecteD transit netWork

We must build on and modify our transportation systems to better connect people to jobs and services inside and outside of the city. To do this, we need to modify our current system to allow for express and local lines of transit while introducing additional modes of transit and taking steps to encourage walking and bicycling. Moving people is a major part of the transportation system, but moving goods and waste are also fundamental aspects to the system since they are key to the economic and environmental health of the city. These different types of systems have different land use requirements which must be taken into account for future land use decisions. To read more about this transformational concept, see the “City Systems” summary document.
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Amtrak Station

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innovative LanDscaPes
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Light Rail Bus Rapid Transit Cross Town Routes Employment Centres Interchange
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Projected Population Density People/Acre 0-2 3-6 7 - 10 11 - 14 15 - 18 19 >

A system of innovative landscapes can create a new framework for civic life, reshape perceptions of Detroit, create a new green (and blue) city identity by building on one of our greatest strengths - the abundance of vacant land. Landscapes can offer opportunities for economic growth, food production, new infrastructure, and recreation opportunities for neighborhoods and the region. To read more about this transformational concept, particularly on landscape systems as infrastructure, see the “City Systems” summary document. traDitionaL & innovative Urban neighborhooDs

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innovative LanDscaPes

In order to retain our current residents and attract new ones, we need to implement strategies to create thriving, regionally competitive neighborhoods with a range of sustainable densities and housing options. These include traditional neighborhood forms, as well as more innovative neighborhoods that begin to leverage Detroit’s existing urban condition to create new ways to live in the city. This summary will detail the future neighborhood types; for more detail on the strategies to stabilize neighborhoods, see the “Neighborhoods” summary document.

In order to create the new land use vision for Detroit, we must infuse these four transformative ideas into our land use decisions. We can achieve this by guiding our short and long term decisions with the Framework Zones, applying the Land Use Typologies to structure our future zoning, and using the future land use map to set an integrated vision for the future.

should guide how we make short and long term decisions
The Framework Zones act as a guide in making future investment decisions in Detroit’s built environment and make up the highest level of city-wide decisionmaking. The Framework Zones are divided into three large categories, based on a careful data analysis of the city’s current physical and market conditions: Low Vacancy, Moderate Vacancy and High Vacancy, see the map below. For a more complete description of the Framework Zones, see the “Neighborhoods” summary document. Within each Framework Zone, the community has a specific menu of future land use options, known as Typologies.

FRAMEWORK ZONES

should serve as the structure for future Zoning
Land use typologies are intended to provide the future vision and direction for land use within the city, while addressing the unique conditions presented within the Framework Zones. There are three primary categories: Neighborhoods, Industrial, and Landscape.

LAND USE TYPOLOGIES

neighborhooDs

Detroit’s neighborhoods must be regionally competitive to retain current residents, attract new residents, and provide the quality of life everyone deserves. Neighborhoods should not only fulfill multiple resident lifestyle needs, they must also contribute to a neighborhood model that establishes sustainable densities for the city at large. To achieve this, the typologies include a range of traditional and non-traditional residential forms.

GREEN RESIDENTIAL
Sustainable residential communities interspersed with maintained and productive open space

TRADITIoNAL Low DENSITy
Residential areas with peripheral retail and other commercial uses that maintain a sustainable cost to provide services

TRADITIoNAL RESIDENTIAL
Clean, safe, fully-occupied residential neighborhoods supported by city services to improve quality of life

GREEN MIxED-RISE
High density residential communities built around environmental assets and open space

NEIGhboRhooD CENTERS
A vibrant mixed-use environment that serves as the hub of commercial, community and recreational activities of adjacent residential neighborhoods

DISTRICT CENTERS
A vibrant mixed-use environment built around institutional and employment anchors

CITy CENTER

LIvE + MAkE
Repurposed industrial and residential structures and land that foster a blend of smaller scale, low-impact production activity with other land uses

framework zones FrameWork zones
greater downtown low vacancy 1 low vacancy 2 moderate vacancy 1 moderate vacancy 2 high vacancy industrial land use strength industrial land use change major park cemetery

NEIGhboRhooDS

Dynamic mixed-use environment functioning as the city’s core for commercial and service employment

inDUstriaL

Modern industrial activity is essential to our economic growth but it needs to be carefully planned to maximize the use of existing land and infrastructure while creating an attractive environment for businesses and adjacent neighborhoods. The industrial typologies enable ways to integrate small scale industrial activities into our communities or buffer more impactful industrial uses in a way that supports economic activity.

An efficient pattern of land use in Detroit means that our city needs to effectively designate areas that are best suited for neighborhoods, which areas are best suited for industrial uses, and which areas are best suited for landscape uses. Multiple land use typologies can be applied within a single Framework Zone, but not all typologies are feasible within every Framework Zone, see below for an outline of the Typologies by Framework Zone.

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LIGhT INDuSTRIAL
Areas that incorporate modern, light industrial uses that provide attractive environments for jobs and are compatible with nearby neighborhoods

GENERAL INDuSTRIAL
Areas that incorporate the bulk of the city’s non-infrastructural industrial land

hEAvy INDuSTRIAL
Districts that accommodate high impact industrial activity isolated from other residential and commercial uses

on the feedback form inserted, please tell us how you think this approach to land use typologies could contribute to creating a more sustainable land use pattern.

INDuSTRIAL

TYPOLOGIES NEIGHBORHOOD
NEIGHBORHOOD CENTER TRADITIONAL LOW DENSITY TRADITIONAL RESIDENTIAL GREEN RESIDENTIAL CITY CENTER GREEN MIXED-RISE LIVE+MAKE

INDUSTRIAL
HEAVY INDUST/ UTILITIES LIGHT INDUSTRIAL GENERAL INDUSTRIAL

LANDSCAPE
LARGE PARKS BLUE+GREEN CORRIDORS INNOVATION PRODUCTIVE INNOVATION ECOLOGICAL

LARGE PARkS

INNovATIvE PRoDuCTIvE

bLuE + GREEN CoRRIDoRS

INNovATIoN ECoLoGICAL

LANDSCAPE

INDUSTRIAL LAND USE CHANGE

INDUSTRIAL LAND USE STRENGTH

HIGH VACANCY

Landscape of innovation, where proTraditional large open spaces across ductive development types predomithe city that provide recreational opportunities and environmental benefits nate

Forms a city-wide network of water and Landscapes of innovation, where ecological development types preforest landscape that improves air and dominate water quality

MODERATE VACANCY 2

MODERATE VACANCY 1

Not all areas of the city that were traditionally zoned as residential will remain as such. Over time, as the population continues to decline in these areas, it will allow the opportunity for reinvention of the land for new and productive land uses that will provide needed jobs and allow land to return to a maintained version of its natural state. Each of the landscape typologies provide a unique opportunity to address existing challenges of environment justice and ecological decline.

LOW VACANCY 2

LOW VACANCY 1

LanDscaPe

GREATER DOWNTOWN

DISTRICT CENTER

the future land use maps set a vision for

FUTURE LAND USE

10 Year horizon: imProve

With the Frameworks and Typologies informing future decisions, there are many ways that we can organize Detroit’s land use pattern to use our land in a way that will improve quality of life, reduce the cost of city services, and increase the amount of revenue to support those services. Strategically linking specific Land Use Typologies to build on the strength, and address the challenges found within the Framework Zones will allow for coordinated land use decisions from public, private, philanthropic, and community-based entities. In each case, the land use plan will facilitate decisions to integrate employment districts, neighbor-

hoods, transportation systems, and an array of landscapes to create a more competitive, dynamic and sustainable city. Having a shared vision for what types of land uses are best suited for particular types of areas will allow for better use of our land resources while taking a critical step toward creating a more sustainable future. The following time horizons outline how we can realize our future land use vision for the city.

Over the next 10 years, we must prepare and equip our residents, business and institutions (existing and new) for economic growth opportunities and household prosperity by growing, recruiting, educating and training in traditional and emerging economic sectors; preparing land development opportunities within the city; and retooling the paths of education for our youth. Today’s most promising neighborhoods have been stabilized and with the establishment of the Neighborhood Center, District Center, Live / Make and Green Residential Neighborhood Typologies and the city’s neighborhoods are becoming increasingly desirable places to live. The High Vacancy Zones are beginning to transform and become more visible as assets.
20 Year horizon: sUstain

Within 20 years time, Detroit should see a more stabilized population and an increase in opportunities for employment within the city. With the vision for the future established, the city should be well on its way to implementing innovative, 21st century systems of infrastructure and transportation. We should be operating as a national leader in the application of technology for transit systems, storm water management, and power and waste management to support new growth. By this time, many areas of the city will have transformed. Vibrant Neighborhood Centers will be increasing in population, and Live / Make and Green Residential will have taken shape and will offer unique new living opportunities. These areas will be linked together by a system of blue and green corridors that, along with productive and ecological landscapes, will be beginning to redefine the image of the city.
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CITY CENTER DISTRICT CENTER NEIGHBORHOOD CTR. GREEN MIXED-RISE MED. DEN. RES. LOW DEN. RES.

LIVE / MAKE HEAVY INDUSTRIAL / UTILITIES GENERAL INDUSTRIAL LIGHT INDUSTRIAL GREEN RESIDENTIAL GREEN RESIDENTIAL TRANSITION
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50 Year horizon: transForm

In 50 years, Detroit should regain its position as one of the most competitive cities in the nation, the top employment center in the region, and a global leader in technology and innovation, creating a healthy and sustainable jobs-to-resident ratio and economic opportunities for a broad variety of residents. By this point, Detroit will have reversed 8 decades of population decline. Traditional and mixed-use neighborhoods of the city, including City Centers, District Centers and Live / Make areas, have begun to fill and opportunities for new residential growth can be expanded into the Green Residential areas. Productive and Ecological Landscapes are now firmly established as a new urban form and have fully transformed the image of the city.
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on the feedback form inserted, please tell us how you think this approach to future land use could contribute to creating a more sustainable land use pattern.

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