Since height restrictions were enacted as part of the Downtown Plan Update in 2010, two sites located south of side of Riverfront Park have remained underutilized as surface parking lots in spite of the ownership group’s efforts to develop them.
The purpose of the height restrictions were to reduce shadowing of Riverfront Park, but a renewed interest in quality, large scale, development befitting a major park renovation has exceeded the interest in minimal shadowing. The owner group and brokerage team have identified existing height restrictions – with the corresponding reduction in developable space and profitability – as the reason that the sites have remained surface parking lots.
Assessment of shadowing impacts of larger buildings on the park show that, although there is an increase in shadows from buildings of this size, they are relatively small during spring through fall.
In March of 2017, your DSP Board unanimously endorsed reduced/eliminated height restrictions. The City conducted a working study of the height requirements with a final report issued and adopted late 2017.
In accordance with the findings of that report, the City is seeking input into possible amendments to the height restrictions on the south side of the park. The current proposal is to allow greater heights in that area in exchange for a limitation on uses in towers (residential or hotel only) and consideration of shadowing impacts on the Park.
The DSP asks that members complete the survey to demonstrate that the downtown business community is united behind providing opportunity to develop mixed-use projects of regional and even national prominence at two of the most significant remaining Opportunity Sites defined in the Downtown Plan Update.