City of Miami
About Miami 21
Taking effect May 2010, Miami 21 represented a complete overhaul of the City’s land use-based, Euclidean zoning code. Using the SmartCode as its starting platform, it is the largest-known application of a transect/form-based code. The document combined both regulatory policy and placemaking concerns, transforming and streamlining an outdated and cumbersome zoning process that had become increasingly difficult to navigate without legal assistance. Comprehensively altering the City’s management of zoning, economic development, transportation, historic preservation, parks, and open space, the new code has also expedited the permitting process. Today, Miami’s urban development is more transparent to land owners, more amenable for pedestrians, and more predictable for developers.
The strategy was a necessary response to Miami’s rapid growth and the conflict between development along corridors and preservation of adjacent single-family homes. The vision of Mayor Manny Diaz and the collaborative effort of the planning department, shepherded by Ana Gelabert-Sanchez, was critical. These City leaders created an appreciation for the magnitude of the initiative and a willingness by more than ten built environment related departments to proactively work together.
- History preserved: innovative TDR program incentivizes preservation.
- Public benefits program: mandatory LEED rating for all buildings over 50,000 sq. ft.
- Nature preserved: environmental bonuses.
Defining Design Details
- Sidewalks Activated: habitable ground floors required at primary frontages.
- Heights accommodated: towers with minimum separations and maximum sizes.
- Appropriate transitions: tall corridor buildings step down to single family homes.
- Human scale: generous floor to ceiling heights.
Brave New Codes
From: Architect MagazineBy: Nate Berg
Commissioners give thumbs up to Miami 21
From: South Florida Business JournalBy: Oscar Pedro Musibay
Miami 21 could reshape new-home construction
From: The Miami HeraldBy: Andres Viglucci