April 16 Community Meeting

The Coalition invites you to a community meeting on Wednesday, April 16, 2014 at 7:00 p.m. at Westwood Town Hall Hold the date! We will provide a quick update on developments like the Westwood Square feasibility study and the Mayor’s support for revitalization. Then we’ll launch right into a look at the current state of the historic business district and the conditions necessary for vitality and development. With presenters Elizabeth Bartley (School of Planning, University of Cincinnati) and Kathleen Norris (managing principal, Urban Fast Forward), we’ll look at the historic business district’s current and potential community and economic activity, the importance of place, the promise of public-private partnerships, and moving from here to there.

See you on April 16th.

Total Land Area for Form-Based Code in Westwood

Did you know that the proposed application of Cincinnati’s Form-Based Code in Westwood is just 105 acres, or only 2.7% of the total land area in Westwood?  Because the Westwood Coalition recommended an incremental approach to focus the application intentionally on Westwood’s historic business district (Westwood historic Main Street and focal point), without diluting the effort across a large area, Westwood’s application of the FBC would be the smallest area of the first four neighborhoods, as compared to 187 acres in Walnut Hills, 155 acres in College Hill, and 150 acres in Madisonville.  Each neighborhood is indicating its preference based on neighborhood priorities and desire; in Westwood, we’re keeping it tight, focused, and achievable.   

Westwood’s Transmittal to City Officials

The Coalition’s recommendations to the community, noted below, were endorsed over the past few weeks by the four Westwood organizations named above. At the October 22, 2013 meeting of the Westwood Coalition, all members of the Coalition, with the exception of one absent member, voiced the endorsement of their organization or business. … We look forward to the next phases of creating the conditions for a thriving business district and neighborhood hub.

This is an excerpt from the Westwood Coalition’s transmittal of community endorsements to Cincinnati City Council and the Planning Department yesterday.  Keep in mind that all of the Westwood Coalition’s recommendations called for continued deliberation and dialogue about the means by which we’ll revitalize this historic business district in which so many Westwood residents, and others in greater Cincinnati, see great potential.

Another Endorsement Received

Westwood Historical Society has notified the Westwood Coalition of its endorsement of the recommendations of the Coalition.  This support means that all four organizations represented by the Coalition have given the nod to the recommendation to apply the form-based code to the historic business district and to continue to develop plans for the revitalization of the same area.  The Coalition meets this week and will notify city officials and Westwood residents of its next steps and community meetings.  Thanks for your comments and suggestions.

Report and Recommendations

At its September 24, 2013 meeting, the Westwood Coalition reached consensus on a report and recommendations.  Please read it!  The report offers an introduction and background, a summary of the process used and findings from the several community meetings, and a set of recommendations.

Westwood Coalition Report and Recommendations, September 2013

We welcome your comments here or via email at revitalizewestwood@gmail.com.  The Westwood Coalition includes members of the business community and members who represent four Westwood organizations.  The organizational representatives will present the report and recommendations to their boards, requesting a response within thirty days.  In October, the Coalition will meet to review the responses of the organizations and make a recommendation to the City.

Keep the dialogue going!

 

 

Presentation from the July 27 Community Meeting

On July 27, 2013, a community meeting attracted over 150 Westwood residents for a presentation and discussion about Westwood’s historic business district.  The presentation, by Cameron Ross, senior planner, City of Cincinnati’s Planning Department, gave an overview of Cincinnati’s form-based code and its design and economic principles, a look at the community-driven design process thus far, and considerations for the business district.  You are welcome to view the presentation here and post your comments and questions.  We’ll post a summary separately of the data collected at that meeting and from surveys we posted online and at the library.

What Would the Form-Based Code Mean for Westwood?

Come to the August 22, 2013 Westwood Coalition meeting as we continue  to explore opportunities for the revitalization of Westwood’s historic business district.  This community meeting will start at 7 p.m. at Westwood First Presbyterian Church.  We will focus exclusively on Cincinnati’s form-based code, following a very brief report of the survey findings from the July 27 meeting.  We’ll have a presentation on the FBC followed by some group work and Q&A.  We’ll ask, most fundamentally, what are the differences between traditional zoning code and the form-based code and, specifically, what it would mean in this particular business district. Thanks in advance for making time for more community deliberation around the future of the business district.