Neighborhood Livability and Social Health
PRINCIPLE LIV 1
Maintain a compact pattern of growth that is well served by public facilities and encourages the efficient use of land.
LIV 1.1 - Growth Management Area
Continue to utilize the GMA surrounding Fort Collins as a tool to guide and manage growth outside of the City limits and delineate the extent of urban development in Fort Collins.
LIV 1.2 - Amendments to the Growth Management Area
Maintain the GMA generally as currently configured. Evaluate limited amendments in accordance with the following criteria to determine whether proposed amendments:
- Are consistent with community goals, principles and policies as expressed in City Plan;
- Would have positive net fiscal benefit to the community;
- Are necessary to accommodate an activity that cannot be reasonably accommodated on lands within the GMA;
- Would allow for the logical, incremental extension of urban services;
- Would offer a desirable new “edge” to the community;
- Are contiguous to existing developed areas of the city; and
- Contribute to the compact urban form of the city.
LIV 1.3 - Community Edges
Collaborate with Larimer County and adjacent communities to plan the edges of the Fort Collins GMA. Provide joint guidance on factors including, but not limited to, future land use, development referrals, infrastructure planning, development standards, Transfer of Development Rights (TDR) programs, fees, community separators and the preservation of open lands.
LIV 1.4 - Intergovernmental Agreements
Work with Larimer County and other jurisdictions to revise Intergovernmental Agreements (IGAs) as needed. Take the following objectives into consideration when revising IGAs:
- Institute a consistent and coordinated system of fees and standards for development located inside and outside the GMA.
- Encourage Larimer County to adopt development standards for projects within the GMA to be in conformance with City Plan and the Land Use Code.
LIV 1.5 - Capital Improvement Policies
Operate under the following Capital Improvement Policies:
- Develop a multiyear plan for capital improvements and update it annually.
- Use a variety of different sources to fund capital projects with an emphasis on the “pay-as-you-go” philosophy.
- Identify funding for operating and maintenance costs for approved capital projects at the time projects are approved.
LIV 1.6 - Adequate Public Facilities
Utilize the provision of public facilities and services to direct development to desired location, in accordance with the following criteria:
- Direct development to locations where it can be adequately served by critical public facilities and services such as water, sewer, police, transportation, schools, fire, stormwater management and parks, in accordance with adopted levels of service for public facilities and services.
- Give preferential consideration to the extension and augmentation of public services and facilities to accommodate infill and redevelopment before new growth areas are prepared for development.
- Review applications for the creation of new special service agencies and the expansion of existing special service agencies for conformance with these City Plan principles and policies.
- Work with Larimer County to develop plans and policies for public services and facilities required for new and existing development located in unincorporated areas of the GMA.
LIV 1.7 - Fees and Development Requirements
Maintain an efficient and fair system of fees and development requirements that assesses the costs and benefits of financing public facilities and services, the need for which is generated by new development and redevelopment. Requirements should emphasize growth paying for its own impacts.
PRINCIPLE LIV 2
Promote infill and redevelopment.
LIV 2.1 - Revitalization of Underutilized Properties
Support the use of creative strategies to revitalize vacant, blighted or otherwise underutilized structures and buildings, including, but not limited to:
- Adaptive reuse of existing buildings (especially those that have historic significance);
- Infill of existing surface parking lots—particularly in areas that are currently, or will be, served by bus rapid transit (BRT) and/or high-frequency transit in the future;
- Public/private partnerships;
- Infrastructure improvements/upgrades;
- Streetscape enhancements; and
- Voluntary consolidation and assemblage of properties to coordinate the redevelopment of blocks or segments of corridors where individual property configurations would otherwise limit redevelopment potential.
LIV 2.2 - Priority Locations for Infill and Redevelopment
Ensure appropriate use of the City’s public investments in infrastructure/improvements in the following areas to achieve the City’s strategic goals:
- Downtown District;
- Urban Mixed-Use Districts;
- Mixed-Employment Districts; and
- Metro Districts.
Make regulatory and other incentives, within the City’s control, available only to projects that are consistent with the long-term vision for these districts in terms of density, intensity, overall mix of uses and affordability.
LIV 2.3 - Transit-Oriented Development
Require higher-density housing and mixed-use development in locations that are currently, or will be, served by BRT and/or high-frequency transit in the future as infill and redevelopment occurs. Promote a variety of housing options for all income levels.
PRINCIPLE LIV 3
Maintain and enhance our unique character and sense of place as the community grows.
LIV 3.1 - Public Amenities
Design streets and other public spaces with the comfort and enjoyment of pedestrians in mind. Incorporate features such as plazas, pocket parks, patios, children’s play areas, transit facilities, sidewalks, pathways, “street furniture” (such as benches and planters) and public art as part of development projects.
LIV 3.2 - Access to Outdoor Spaces
Incorporate Nature in the City principles and other outdoor amenities into the design of high-density projects, particularly in areas lacking convenient and direct access to nature.
LIV 3.3 - Gateways
Enhance and accentuate the community’s gateways, including Interstate 25 interchanges and College Avenue, to provide a coordinated and positive community entrance. Gateway design elements may include streetscape design, supportive land uses, building architecture, landscaping, signage, lighting and public art.
LIV 3.4 - Design Standards and Guidelines
Maintain a robust set of citywide design standards as part of the City’s Land Use Code to ensure a flexible, yet predictable, level of quality for future development that advances the community’s sustainability goals, e.g., climate action. Continue to develop and adopt location-specific standards or guidelines where unique characteristics exist to promote the compatibility of infill redevelopment.
LIV 3.5 - Distinctive Design
Require the adaptation of standardized corporate architecture to reflect local values and ensure that the community’s appearance remains unique. Development should not consist solely of repetitive design that may be found in other communities.
LIV 3.6 - Context-Sensitive Development
Ensure that all development contributes to the positive character of the surrounding area. Building materials, architectural details, color range, building massing, and relationships to streets and sidewalks should be tailored to the surrounding area.
LIV 3.7 - Civic Buildings and Grounds
Locate prominent civic facilities and grounds—such as community buildings, government offices, recreation centers, Post Offices, libraries, schools and plazas—in prominent and central locations as highly visible focal points. They should be close to major transit stops and be designed to support sustainability outcomes.
PRINCIPLE LIV 4
Enhance neighborhood livability.
LIV 4.1 - New Neighborhoods
Encourage creativity in the design and construction of new neighborhoods that:
- Provides a unifying and interconnected framework of streets, sidewalks, walkway spines and other public spaces;
- Expands housing options, including higher- density and mixed-use buildings;
- Offers opportunities to age in place;
- Improves access to services and amenities; and
- Incorporates unique site conditions.
LIV 4.2 - Compatibility of Adjacent Development
Ensure that development that occurs in adjacent districts complements and enhances the positive qualities of existing neighborhoods. Developments that share a property line and/or street frontage with an existing neighborhood should promote compatibility by:
- Continuing established block patterns and streets to improve access to services and amenities from the adjacent neighborhood;
- Incorporating context-sensitive buildings and site features (e.g., similar size, scale and materials); and
- Locating parking and service areas where impacts on existing neighborhoods—such as noise and traffic—will be minimized.
LIV 4.3 - Neighborhood Services and Amenities
Encourage the addition of new services, conveniences and/or gathering places in existing neighborhoods that lack such facilities, provided they meet applicable performance and design standards. Consider additional tools such as a conditional-use permit process and expanding home occupation provisions.
LIV 4.4 - Culturally Relevant Gathering Places
Promote the addition and retention of culturally relevant businesses, gathering places and services in existing neighborhoods and commercial areas to maintain and enhance a sense of welcome and inclusion as redevelopment occurs.
PRINCIPLE LIV 5
Create more opportunities for housing choices.
LIV 5.1 - Housing Options
To enhance community health and livability, encourage a variety of housing types and densities, including mixed-used developments that are well served by public transportation and close to employment centers, shopping, services and amenities.
LIV 5.2 - Supply of Attainable Housing
Encourage public and private sectors to maintain and develop a diverse range of housing options, including housing that is attainable (30% or less of monthly income) to residents earning the median income. Options could include ADUs, duplexes, townhomes, mobile homes, manufactured housing and other “missing middle” housing types.
LIV 5.3 - Land for Residential Development
Use density requirements to maximize the use of land for residential development to positively influence housing supply and expand housing choice.
LIV 5.4 - Land Supply for Affordable Housing
Continue to grow and utilize the Affordable Housing Land Bank Program and other programs to create permanently affordable housing units.
LIV 5.6 - Existing Neighborhoods
Expand housing options in existing neighborhoods (where permitted by underlying zoning) by encouraging:
- Infill development on vacant and underutilized lots;
- Internal ADUs such as basement or upstairs apartments;
- Detached ADUs on lots of sufficient size; and
- Duplexes, townhomes or other alternatives to detached single-family homes that are compatible with the scale and mass of adjacent properties.
PRINCIPLE LIV 6
Improve access to housing that meets the needs of residents regardless of their race, ethnicity, income, age, ability or background.
LIV 6.1 - Basic Access
Support construction of housing units with practical features that provide access and functionality for people of all ages and widely varying mobilities.
LIV 6.2 - Specialized Housing Needs
Plan for populations who have specialized housing needs. Integrate residential-care and treatment facilities, shelters, permanent supportive housing, group homes and senior housing throughout the GMA in areas that are well served by amenities and public transportation.
LIV 6.3 - Student Housing
Plan for and encourage new housing for students on and near campuses and in areas well-served by public transportation. Coordinate with CSU, Front Range Community College (FRCC) and other educational institutions.
LIV 6.4 - Permanent Supply of Affordable Housing
Create and maintain an up-to-date inventory of affordable housing in the community. Pursue policy and regulatory changes that will encourage the rehabilitation and retention of affordable housing in perpetuity.
LIV 6.5 - Aging in Place
Retain attainable housing options in existing neighborhoods so residents can “age in place.”
LIV 6.6 - Affordable Housing Programs
Support the development and provision of affordable housing in the community by maintaining and expanding dedicated sources of funding for affordable housing services and programs, including management of a competitive process for federal and local funding, development incentives, homebuyer assistance and the Land Bank Program.
LIV 6.7 - Incentives
Support and encourage the private development of affordable housing by offering incentives, such as special assistance to offset the costs of the City’s impact fees and development requirements, rebates for energy-saving features, and reducing barriers to the construction and rehabilitation of long-term affordable housing units.
LIV 6.8 - Monitor Housing Affordability
Collect, maintain and disseminate information on housing affordability such as cost, demand and supply of affordable housing stock.
LIV 6.9 - Prevent Displacement
Build the capacity of homeowner groups, affordable housing providers and support organizations to enable the purchase, rehabilitation and long-term management of affordable housing. Particular emphasis should be given to mobile home parks located in infill and redevelopment areas.
LIV 6.10 - Mitigate Displacement Impacts
Consider mitigation strategies to assist residents displaced through the closure of manufactured housing parks or conversion of rental apartments, including single-room-occupancy units, to condominiums or other uses.
PRINCIPLE LIV 7
Promote a more inclusive and equtiable community that encourages and celebrates diversity.
LIV 7.1 - Acceptance, Inclusion and Respect
Identify opportunities to promote acceptance, inclusion and respect for diversity. Discourage all forms of discrimination, in addition to the specific characteristics that are protected by law.
LIV 7.2 - Diversity
Celebrate Fort Collins’ diverse community through activities that promote learning and understanding of different ethnic and cultural groups, such as working with partners and cultural leaders, co-creation of cultural events and activities, and responsiveness to community vision.
LIV 7.3 - Cultural Competency
Provide City services and share information in a manner that is culturally and linguistically relevant to a range of residents.
LIV 7.4 - Equity Considerations
Include considerations for equity in decision-making processes across the City organization to ensure that the benefits and/or burdens of City actions or investments are shared fairly and do not disproportionately affect a particular group or geographic location over others.
PRINCIPLE LIV 8
Develop an equitable, comprehensive, coordinated and efficient system of health and human services that is accessible to all residents in need of assistance.
LIV 8.1 - Health and Safety Ordinances
Foster healthy and safe environments by continuing enforcement of current health and safety ordinances related to tobacco and alcohol use, noise, snow removal, dismount zones, and other health, environmental and nuisance topics.
LIV 8.2 - Health and Human Service providers
Rely upon Larimer County to provide community health and human services in partnership with local service providers. Focus on improving communication, education, accessibility and collaboration in order to enhance overall physical and mental health, safety and wellness of the community.
LIV 8.3 - Partner Organizations
Partner, fund and collaborate with local service providers to ensure adequate levels of assistance for human-services needs, including affordable childcare; homelessness services; mental illness and substance use disorders; food access; workforce development; and education.
LIV 8.4 - City Real Estate
Continue leveraging underutilized City facilities and real estate assets for use by local nonprofit and partner agencies providing community benefits such as childcare, supportive housing, food access and other services. Consider competitive short- and long-term lease or sale opportunities while balancing the City’s financial responsibilities.
LIV 8.5 - Facility Siting and Access
Encourage health- and human-services providers to carefully consider locations of new facilities and transportation implications, provide transportation to services and coordinate with the public transportation system, particularly areas that are, or will be, served by high-frequency transit.
LIV 8.6 - Homelessness
Continue to collaborate with partner organizations on the implementation of Fort Collins’ plan to make homelessness rare, short-lived and nonrecurring.
PRINCIPLE LIV 9
Encourage development that reduces impacts on natural ecosystems and promotes sustainability and resilience.
LIV 9.1 - Efficiency and Resource Conservation
Reduce net energy and water use of new and existing buildings through energy-efficiency programs, incentives, building and energy code regulations, and electrification and integration of renewable energy technologies.
LIV 9.2 - Outdoor Water Use
Promote reductions in outdoor water use by selecting low-water-use plant materials, using efficient irrigation, improving the soil before planting and exploring opportunities to use nonpotable water for irrigation.
LIV 9.3 - Urban Heat Island Effect
Encourage the use of site and building features, such as shade trees and reflective materials, to reduce heat absorption by exterior surfaces, provide shade or otherwise mitigate the urban heat island effect.
LIV 9.4 - Solar Orientation
Orient buildings, streets and public spaces to take advantage of active and passive solar energy. Consider factors such as landscaping, window placement, overhangs and building location to heat homes, reduce snow and ice buildup on neighborhood streets and to enhance the comfort of public spaces.
PRINCIPLE LIV 10
Recognize, protect and enhance historic resources.
LIV 10.1 - Identify Historic Resources
Determine through survey techniques what historic resources exist within the GMA; how significant these resources are; the nature and degree of threat to their preservation; and methods for their protection.
LIV 10.2 - Preserve Historic Resources
Preserve historically significant buildings, sites and structures throughout Downtown and the community. Ensure that new construction respects the existing architectural character of the surrounding historic resources without artificially duplicating historic elements.
LIV 10.3 - Increase Appreciation of Value
Increase awareness of, understanding of, and appreciation for the value of historic preservation in contributing to the sense of place, sustainability and quality of life in Fort Collins.
LIV 10.4 - Financial Incentives
Use incentives to encourage and leverage private sector investment in the rehabilitation of historic resources.
LIV 10.5 - Planning and Enforcement
Recognize the contribution of historic resources to the quality of life in Fort Collins through ongoing planning efforts and enforcement of regulations.
LIV 10.6 - Landmark Designation
Actively encourage property owners to designate eligible properties as historic landmarks.
LIV 10.7 - Integrate and Adaptively Reuse Historic Resources
Maintain the value of materials embodied in existing buildings and avoid the environmental costs of demolition and new construction by encouraging creative reuse of historic resources in redevelopment activities.
LIV 10.8 - Energy Efficiency
Support energy-efficiency improvements that contribute to the integrity and longevity of historic structures without compromising the historic resource.