The City South plan is part of the City of San Antonio’s “Balanced Growth” initiative. Aiming to balance and develop growth in city sectors which were once overlooked, this regional plan deters sprawl in favor of compact development.
The site, 90 square miles directly south of the city limits, was historically used for farming and ranching, and remained underdeveloped while areas to the north and west of the city were overtaken by suburban sprawl. After the negative consequences of suburbanization became apparent, most notably in the form of traffic congestion and the loss of open space, the City of San Antonio Planning Department opted to enact a new code favoring traditional, concentrated development for City South. With a major manufacturing plant and other large employment centers opening in the near future, the area will soon gain an influx of new residents. The City South plan will accommodate this growth, while still preserving the surrounding natural landscape.
The City South plan demonstrates how the discipline of the neighborhood, learned from traditional urbanism, can be applied to a range of sites including greenfield, brownfield and infill locations. The plan divides the land into six distinct categories: preserve open space sector, reserve open space sector, restricted growth sector, controlled growth sector, intended growth sector and specialized district. Each category will grow according to different patterns and restrictions, all of which will encourage mixed-use, and pedestrian friendly development. These sectors will ultimately be linked by a comprehensive transportation network.