Frequently Asked Questions

Do you have a question about Form-Based Codes (FBCs)? Review our list of Frequently Asked Questions.

Are Form-Based Codes really new?

No, hundreds of communities have used all or part of a typical FBC in their zoning. FBCs are an emerging trend since they help foster economic development by reducing processing time.

What is the difference between traditional zoning and Form-Based Codes?

FBCs encourage place making while traditional codes simply attempt to reduce impacts between uses. FBCs address more aspects of place making, such as street configurations, walkability, how buildings should encompass the street, street furniture, people oriented signs, etc, than traditional codes. Zones created under an FBC are particular to the place and not generic. FBCs implement the vision for the area.

Isn't the Utah Form-Based Code template/manual really just a code I can use right off the shelf?

No. The Utah FBC template/manual is intended to be a process where communities can engage in planning a place with a very specific ordinance to implement that plan.

Doesn't an Form-Based Code ignore land uses?

No. There is a Chapter to define appropriate land uses that becomes an important discussion as part of the process of site specific calibration.

Why is it important to do a detailed visioning process first?

FBCs implement the Vision. The clearer and more directed a vision is toward all of the components of an FBC, the easier it will be to implement that vision with an FBC.

Why do Form-Based Codes promote more permitted uses?

The philosophy that a FBC implements a vision, includes the idea that permitted uses should move development toward the vision. As developers help implement the vision through their construction, if their proposal is in harmony with that vision, communities should make it easy for them to move to the building stage as quickly as possible.

Why does an Form-Based Codes address streets and blocks?

Block length and street cross sections are some of the most important components of walkability for an area. Mixed use places include a vibrant street environment which promotes the concept of people using the public realm while walking, exercising, working, shopping, and lingering for social activities.

Why should I use Adobe InDesign to create a Form-Based Code?

The template/manual was created in InDesign to facilitate the calibration of the template to the local site. InDesign allows for modifications of the graphics to occur with the least effort. New diagrams, charts, pictures, and sketches can be created and then easily brought into the Code as objects for placement on a page.

What version of InDesign do I need?

It runs in Version 5 and any of the more recent updates.

Does an Form-Based Code address density (i.e. units per acre of FAR)?

Not directly. Density should be addressed in the visioning effort and then the FBCs implements those guidelines through standards that address height and coverage. Some typical densities are suggested in the workbook for different types of centers.

What communities are using Form-Based Codes in Utah?

North Temple and 4th South Hybrids–Salt Lake City, Sugarhouse is in the adoption process, West Valley Hybrid, Eagle Mountain, Saratoga Springs and Springville are in development stage, Provo Hybrid, Heber City Hybrid, Park City, Farmington, Sandy Hybrid, Ogden Hybrid, North Logan. Magna, South Salt Lake, SLCo/Meadowbrook are using the Utah FBC manual/template.

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