Bellevue Corridor Community Plan, Merced, California
April 12th, 2014

Over the past 18 months, Sargent Town Planning - in association with Lisa Wise Consulting - has prepared the Bellevue Corridor Community Plan for the City of Merced.  The primary objectives of the Plan - funded by a grant from the Strategic Growth Council - is to define a clear vision and implementing policies to guilde the phased development of this 2,000-acre rural area separating - and eventually connecting - the existing town and the recently established University of California Merced Campus.  Key goals include maximizing the use of public transit and active transportation modes and reducing dependence on automobile use to support the City's attainment of economic vitality, fiscal sustainability, public health and environmental quality goals.  

The planning team worked closely and collaboratively with City staff, a Community Advisory Committee (CAC) of property owners, the University and other key stakeholders, and a Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) of City and County staff and other public agency representatives.  Through that process the team has presented a series of alternative circulation networks, development patterns, land use mixes and intensities, and urban design character, converging toward a prefered alternative.  The alternative that emerged is organized by a flexible, interconnected network of complete streets, parks, and other public open spaces.  The network backbone responds to existing ownership patterns and natural drainages, with future fine-grained network and block structure flexible to respond to shifting economic opportunities over the several decades of anticipated growth in this area. The scale and character of development at several key centers are defined by the plan - a Gateway Center at Bellevue and Avenue G, an R&D Employment Center along Bellevue between Avenue G and Lake Road, and a mixed-use T.O.D. Center adjacent to the University at Bellevue and Lake.  Bellevue Road is envisioned as a major boulevard, the primary regional gateway to the University.  To the south of Bellevue, Mandeville Road is designed as the major transit corridor - most likely bus rapid transit (BRT) connecting the University to Downtown Merced and the neighborhood centers along the way.  The Plan is currently under public review.

 

Bellevue Corridor Community Plan, Merced, California
April 12th, 2014

Over the past 18 months, Sargent Town Planning - in association with Lisa Wise Consulting - has prepared the Bellevue Corridor Community Plan for the City of Merced.  The primary objectives of the Plan - funded by a grant from the Strategic Growth Council - is to define a clear vision and implementing policies to guilde the phased development of this 2,000-acre rural area separating - and eventually connecting - the existing town and the recently established University of California Merced Campus.  Key goals include maximizing the use of public transit and active transportation modes and reducing dependence on automobile use to support the City's attainment of economic vitality, fiscal sustainability, public health and environmental quality goals.  

The planning team worked closely and collaboratively with City staff, a Community Advisory Committee (CAC) of property owners, the University and other key stakeholders, and a Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) of City and County staff and other public agency representatives.  Through that process the team has presented a series of alternative circulation networks, development patterns, land use mixes and intensities, and urban design character, converging toward a prefered alternative.  The alternative that emerged is organized by a flexible, interconnected network of complete streets, parks, and other public open spaces.  The network backbone responds to existing ownership patterns and natural drainages, with future fine-grained network and block structure flexible to respond to shifting economic opportunities over the several decades of anticipated growth in this area. The scale and character of development at several key centers are defined by the plan - a Gateway Center at Bellevue and Avenue G, an R&D Employment Center along Bellevue between Avenue G and Lake Road, and a mixed-use T.O.D. Center adjacent to the University at Bellevue and Lake.  Bellevue Road is envisioned as a major boulevard, the primary regional gateway to the University.  To the south of Bellevue, Mandeville Road is designed as the major transit corridor - most likely bus rapid transit (BRT) connecting the University to Downtown Merced and the neighborhood centers along the way.  The Plan is currently under public review.

 

Transit Oriented Development Code, Lancaster, California
March 8th, 2013

Following Sargent Town Planning’s successful completion of a vision plan for Lancaster’s Southeast Transit Village Planning Area (lower right quadrant on the zoning map above) the City of Lancaster selected the firm to prepare new zoning for that area and other neighborhoods to the south and east of the Downtown District. This work is being done under a grant that the City received from Metro – the Los Angeles Metropolitan Transportation Authority – as part of the Sustainable Communities funding Metro received from the Strategic Growth Council. The STP team includes Nelson/Nyggard and Metropolitan Research + Economics – for transportation and economic consulting, respectively.

Through a series of public workshops during 2013, and in collaboration with City staff and the City's Architectural and Design Review Committee, the team has prepared a draft form-based development code for this area, currently under public review.  In additoin to the conventional land use, height and setback standards, the zones include standards for building scale and massing, frontage design, parking location and screening, and for architectural and landscape design character. Zones range from the relatively intense mixed-use environment of the Station Area Zone and the light industrial Employment Commercial District, to predominantly residential zones that provide for a mix of neighborhood-scale housing types. A "complete streets kit of parts" is also included, along with model street sections, to assist City staff in preparing detailed street improvement plans as reinvestment in these neighborhoods occurs, to calm vehicular travel speeds and improve accommodation for pedestrians and bicylists.

 

Transit Oriented Development Code, Lancaster, California
April 12th, 2014

Following Sargent Town Planning’s successful completion of a vision plan for Lancaster’s Southeast Transit Village Planning Area (lower right quadrant on the zoning map above) the City of Lancaster selected the firm to prepare new zoning for that area and other neighborhoods to the south and east of the Downtown District. This work is being done under a grant that the City received from Metro – the Los Angeles Metropolitan Transportation Authority – as part of the Sustainable Communities funding Metro received from the Strategic Growth Council. The STP team includes Nelson/Nyggard and Metropolitan Research + Economics – for transportation and economic consulting, respectively.

Through a series of public workshops during 2013, and in collaboration with City staff and the City's Architectural and Design Review Committee, the team has prepared a draft form-based development code for this area, currently under public review.  In additoin to the conventional land use, height and setback standards, the zones include standards for building scale and massing, frontage design, parking location and screening, and for architectural and landscape design character. Zones range from the relatively intense mixed-use environment of the Station Area Zone and the light industrial Employment Commercial District, to predominantly residential zones that provide for a mix of neighborhood-scale housing types. A "complete streets kit of parts" is also included, along with model street sections, to assist City staff in preparing detailed street improvement plans as reinvestment in these neighborhoods occurs, to calm vehicular travel speeds and improve accommodation for pedestrians and bicylists.

 

Transit Oriented Development Code, Lancaster, California
April 12th, 2014

Following Sargent Town Planning’s successful completion of a vision plan for Lancaster’s Southeast Transit Village Planning Area (lower right quadrant on the zoning map above) the City of Lancaster selected the firm to prepare new zoning for that area and other neighborhoods to the south and east of the Downtown District. This work is being done under a grant that the City received from Metro – the Los Angeles Metropolitan Transportation Authority – as part of the Sustainable Communities funding Metro received from the Strategic Growth Council. The STP team includes Nelson/Nyggard and Metropolitan Research + Economics – for transportation and economic consulting, respectively.

Through a series of public workshops during 2013, and in collaboration with City staff and the City's Architectural and Design Review Committee, the team has prepared a draft form-based development code for this area, currently under public review.  In additoin to the conventional land use, height and setback standards, the zones include standards for building scale and massing, frontage design, parking location and screening, and for architectural and landscape design character. Zones range from the relatively intense mixed-use environment of the Station Area Zone and the light industrial Employment Commercial District, to predominantly residential zones that provide for a mix of neighborhood-scale housing types. A "complete streets kit of parts" is also included, along with model street sections, to assist City staff in preparing detailed street improvement plans as reinvestment in these neighborhoods occurs, to calm vehicular travel speeds and improve accommodation for pedestrians and bicylists.

 

Mission Hills Design Guidelines
April 12th, 2014

Sargent Town Planning worked with the City and community of Mission Hills, Kansas through 2011 to prepare design guidelines to help conserve and protect the unique, pastoral design character and distinguished architecture of this iconic early 20th century garden suburb. Developed the J.C. Nichols - the master developer of the Kansas City Country Club District, of which Mission Hills was the final and most extravagant phase - and designed by some of the nations leading town planners of that era, Mission Hills is characterized by a very sophisticated an nuanced integration of the natural terrain of the site, a masterful landscape of winding streets, and distinguished homes in a variety of historic revival styles.  The master plan and development regulations by which the initial neighborhoods were developed from 1915 to 1945 had provided very clear direction as to the siting, size and massing of each new home.  But every since the adoption of the City's first Zoning Ordinance in the early 1950's - based directly on ordinances of that time focused on rapid suburban expansion and mass housing production - the community has struggled to ensure that new homes "fit into" the subtle and sophisticated original design.  

The Guidelines were prepared through a process historical research, close observation and analysis of the distinctive landscape and architectural patterns throughout the community, and extensive consultatation and public workshops with local designers, developers, property owners and the public at large. In April 2012 the City adopted the guidelines and since that time Sargent Town Planning has been providing design review services to support the City's staff and Architectural Review Board (ARB) as they integrated the Guidelines into their review processes. The Guidelines as adopted provided very clear conceptual design direction for homes of various sizes and massing types, but through the course of this on-going collaboration it became clear that the ARB would welcome a higher level of specificity and precision than initially anticipated for calibrating the scale and massing of each home to the width and configuration of its lot. Over the past few months, STP has worked closely with City staff to restructure some of the core guidelines, providing numerical calculations based on the width - and any of several special conditions - of each lot, on which the size, scale and massing of new homes is to be based. The refined Guidelines are currently under review by the Planning Commission and ARB.

 

 

Mission Hills Design Guidelines
April 12th, 2014

Sargent Town Planning worked with the City and community of Mission Hills, Kansas through 2011 to prepare design guidelines to help conserve and protect the unique, pastoral design character and distinguished architecture of this iconic early 20th century garden suburb. Developed the J.C. Nichols - the master developer of the Kansas City Country Club District, of which Mission Hills was the final and most extravagant phase - and designed by some of the nations leading town planners of that era, Mission Hills is characterized by a very sophisticated an nuanced integration of the natural terrain of the site, a masterful landscape of winding streets, and distinguished homes in a variety of historic revival styles.  The master plan and development regulations by which the initial neighborhoods were developed from 1915 to 1945 had provided very clear direction as to the siting, size and massing of each new home.  But every since the adoption of the City's first Zoning Ordinance in the early 1950's - based directly on ordinances of that time focused on rapid suburban expansion and mass housing production - the community has struggled to ensure that new homes "fit into" the subtle and sophisticated original design.  

The Guidelines were prepared through a process historical research, close observation and analysis of the distinctive landscape and architectural patterns throughout the community, and extensive consultatation and public workshops with local designers, developers, property owners and the public at large. In April 2012 the City adopted the guidelines and since that time Sargent Town Planning has been providing design review services to support the City's staff and Architectural Review Board (ARB) as they integrated the Guidelines into their review processes. The Guidelines as adopted provided very clear conceptual design direction for homes of various sizes and massing types, but through the course of this on-going collaboration it became clear that the ARB would welcome a higher level of specificity and precision than initially anticipated for calibrating the scale and massing of each home to the width and configuration of its lot. Over the past few months, STP has worked closely with City staff to restructure some of the core guidelines, providing numerical calculations based on the width - and any of several special conditions - of each lot, on which the size, scale and massing of new homes is to be based. The refined Guidelines are currently under review by the Planning Commission and ARB.

 

 

Mission Hills Design Guidelines
April 12th, 2014

Sargent Town Planning worked with the City and community of Mission Hills, Kansas through 2011 to prepare design guidelines to help conserve and protect the unique, pastoral design character and distinguished architecture of this iconic early 20th century garden suburb. Developed the J.C. Nichols - the master developer of the Kansas City Country Club District, of which Mission Hills was the final and most extravagant phase - and designed by some of the nations leading town planners of that era, Mission Hills is characterized by a very sophisticated an nuanced integration of the natural terrain of the site, a masterful landscape of winding streets, and distinguished homes in a variety of historic revival styles.  The master plan and development regulations by which the initial neighborhoods were developed from 1915 to 1945 had provided very clear direction as to the siting, size and massing of each new home.  But every since the adoption of the City's first Zoning Ordinance in the early 1950's - based directly on ordinances of that time focused on rapid suburban expansion and mass housing production - the community has struggled to ensure that new homes "fit into" the subtle and sophisticated original design.  

The Guidelines were prepared through a process historical research, close observation and analysis of the distinctive landscape and architectural patterns throughout the community, and extensive consultatation and public workshops with local designers, developers, property owners and the public at large. In April 2012 the City adopted the guidelines and since that time Sargent Town Planning has been providing design review services to support the City's staff and Architectural Review Board (ARB) as they integrated the Guidelines into their review processes. The Guidelines as adopted provided very clear conceptual design direction for homes of various sizes and massing types, but through the course of this on-going collaboration it became clear that the ARB would welcome a higher level of specificity and precision than initially anticipated for calibrating the scale and massing of each home to the width and configuration of its lot. Over the past few months, STP has worked closely with City staff to restructure some of the core guidelines, providing numerical calculations based on the width - and any of several special conditions - of each lot, on which the size, scale and massing of new homes is to be based. The refined Guidelines are currently under review by the Planning Commission and ARB.