August 16, 2021

Transit Oriented Development Goal Of Zoning Amendments

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Transit Oriented Development Goal Of Zoning Amendments

Changes to Indianapolis’s zoning code aim to emphasize transit oriented development.

A proposal passed by the Indianapolis City-County Council last week amends parts of Indy Rezone, an overhaul of the city’s zoning ordinances. It introduces a new overlay district that applies to IndyGo’s rapid transit lines.

Called transit oriented development, the trend in city planning aims to create more compact and sustainable communities close to mass transit options.  In Indianapolis, the new bus rapid transit lines -- Red, Blue and Purple -- are the focus.

Department of Metropolitan Development Planner Shannon Norman said while Indy Rezone was completed only five years ago, zoning ordinances are living breathing documents.

“They need to be amended to take into consideration new policies, new land uses, but also like shifts in the economic development of our city,” Norman said.

The proposal includes countywide strategic amendments to promote walkable, pedestrian friendly thoroughfares.

“And that’s not just through new sidewalks,” Norman said.”It’s also mixed use developments, it’s promoting car optional solutions rather than car-centric solutions, putting businesses closer to where people live.”

The goal is to create more density to promote development which can also drive affordable housing solutions.

The city has been working on the changes since joining the American Cities Climate Challenge in 2018.

The council made a few amendments that need to be approved by the DMD at a meeting next month.

Contact WFYI city government and policy reporter Jill Sheridan at jsheridan@wfyi.org. Follow on Twitter: @JillASheridan.

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