Asheville, North Carolina


November 2012 - September 2014


Code Studio
Third Coast Design Studio
Sasha Vrtunski

The City of Asheville recently funded a pilot project to prepare the City’s first charrette-driven form-based code. Haywood Road in West Asheville was selected as the most appropriate place for this first code. The market had recently revitalized many of the existing buildings in the corridor, and it was expected that future new development activity would follow. Haywood Road is a primary connector between the French Broad River and Patton Avenue; an important highway entry to downtown. It serves as the heart of West Asheville, a community of generally small-lot single-family neighborhoods built mostly in the first half of the 20th Century.

Code Studio conducted a public design charrette to refine the vision for the area and develop the standards necessary to regulate urban form in the corridor. A form-based code draft was prepared for consideration by a citizen committee, the Planning Commission, and eventually the City Council. The code divides the corridor into six discrete sub-districts, and regulates their character with an emphasis in some sub-districts on retaining existing buildings, while other sub-districts focus on redevelopment. The new code replaces downtown zoning that was adopted primarily to allow for reduced parking requirements (but inadvertently allowed significant height — even on very narrow and shallow parcels). The new code also includes new sign regulations for the corridor.

Visit the project website.