Form-based zoning inspires development along Troy’s major corridor

Driven by an innovative, 2008 master plan, form-based zoning and higher design requirements, the City of Troy has seen $11 million in private economic development investment along its Big Beaver corridor.

Troy store fronts

 In its December 8, 2013 edition, Crain’s Detroit Business described the city’s move away from a traditional zoning approach based on land use  to form-based zoning, which among other conditions, requires that buildings be placed along the corridor and parking be behind buildings. The city also eliminated the requirement that restaurants be attached to office buildings and allows them as infill of existing, expansive parking lots.  Six new restaurants have been built since, including Granite City Food and Brewery, Piada Italian Street Food, Bonefish Grille, Carrabba’s Italian Grill and Halo Burger. La-Z-Boy Furniture, Flagstar Bank and Sprint have also opened stores in the area.

Granite City “The ordinance changes make the things we wanted most, like walkability and mixed-use development, the easiest to accomplish,” Planning Director Brent Savidant told Crain’s. “That helps strengthen the presence of infrastructure along Big Beaver Road, which we hope will encourage more development.”

The Detroit Medical Center has plans for a 70,000-square-foot, $42 million children’s outpatient specialty center along Big Beaver.  In addition, a 60-unit high-end apartment project has been preliminary approved in the area.  The city has also approved plans for five new, nationally-branded hotels, two of which will be in the Big Beaver corridor, the Detroit Free Press reported on December 8. These projects further drive demand for restaurants and retail.