Form-Based Zoning


Form-Based Zoning Facebook
Public Design Event






Remember when you said you wanted to make a difference…?


Join the City’s Department of Planning, Housing & Community Development (DPHCD) and our consultant team (Brovitz Community Planning & Design, Dodson & Flinker, and the Principle Group) to prepare “form-based zoning” (FBZ) for three commercial areas in New Bedford:


  • Acushnet Avenue International Marketplace
  • Goulart Square Commercial District
  • Downtown Business District

What is Form-Based Zoning?

Traditional zoning, such as the kind New Bedford currently has, is a common practice of urban planning where everyday uses are separated from each other (think residential vs. industrial). Alternatively, FBZ is an innovative method that New Bedford may utilize to shape its future development to achieve a specific design form, as well as, a mix of uses based on what the community wants. By adopting new zoning codes that follow this form-based approach, the DPHCD hopes to provide the important tools needed to ensure specific standards that will address the relationship between public and private spaces, particularly the design of streets and open spaces, while preserving the fabric and character of our commercial districts.

Form-Based Zoning Public Design Event

To increase public participation, we will be holding a Public Design Event between July 21st and 27th (see attached poster). During this event, we will conduct walking tours, public workshops, and presentations of conceptual plans and ideas generated by the community and the team to enhance and preserve these commercial districts.

Community Networking and Outreach

In addition to your participation in the public design event, we encourage you to spread the word to your friends, family and others you know who are residents, colleagues, and business owners, that want to help plan for the future of the city by getting involved! Please help us raise the excitement about these great opportunities to help create new design methods while retaining New Bedford’s historic fabric!

So where does this all lead?

Our goal is to wrap up the public engagement and FBZ process by the end of this year culminating in the presentation of proposed changes to the city’s zoning ordinance before the City Council and their subsequent adoption of these ordinance changes.

Using FORM-BASED ZONING to Guide Community Development
Public Design Event July 21-27
For more information, please click here.

Public Design Schedule

For more information about Form-Based Zoning:
Brovitz Community Planning and Design
Brovitz Community Planning and Design Facebook Page


New Bedford Poster 11x17 FINAL

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