Northwest Hillsborough County

Location: Florida, USA
Project Categories: UrbanismCodes
Year Started: 1999
Status: adopted
Size: 21750 acres

The northwest sector of Hillsborough County, Florida has been subjected to gradual suburbanization for 40 years. The negative consequences of this pattern are now becoming apparent as traffic congestion grows increasingly intolerable, and land continues to be consumed at alarming rates by development patterns detracting more from the landscape than they provide.

The population growth will continue with an additional 39,000 residents projected by 2020. The master plan is proposed to guide this growth towards the more compact, mixed-use pattern of traditional neighborhoods. For this particular site, the design is shaped by existing natural and manmade patterns. The natural determinants delineate Rural Areas, and the manmade determinants delineate Community Areas. The Rural Areas include Preserves, which are to remain free of development in perpetuity, and Reserves, which are intended for agricultural use or development at low densities.

The Community Areas encourage mixed-use Traditional Neighborhood Development (TND) throughout, as well as higher density commercial development at designated Town Centers. It is envisioned this alternative development pattern, described in the master plan, be accomplished through incentives and market driven strategies. The higher density of the Town Centers is achieved by a transfer of development rights (TDR) from Rural Reserve Areas through purchase. These Reserves, voided of their density, then join the permanent Preserve areas.

The master plan also enables the evolution of existing suburban conditions into mature, mixed-use communities: the residential subdivisions into neighborhoods, the business parks and shopping centers into town centers. Particular attention is paid to the historic area of Citrus Park as a model on the use of the proposed TND ordinance.

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