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Sunday, July 24, 2016

City adopts Urban Mixed Use Zoning

City adopts Urban Mixed Use Zoning

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The UMX Zoning district includes swaths of Dawson Street, Wooster Street, 5th Avenue, Market Street, Princess Street, Greenfield Street and 16th and 17th streets.

After a year of extensive public input and a unanimous City Council vote on March 19, the new UMX zoning district was created to facilitate and encourage infill development and redevelopment of property in the older parts of Wilmington (often referred to as the “1945 Corporate Limits”). Infill development and redevelopment lead to higher property values and are desired ways for the city to grow and expand its tax base. UMX is the latest tool in the city's effort to grow inward.

UMX zoning allows a mix of uses (residential, retail, commercial, etc…) and encourages development that is compatible with the unique, urban context of the area. Compared to traditional zoning districts, which focus on the permitted uses of a property, UMX places more emphasis on how the building looks and how the design fits in with the neighborhood. It encourages the revitalization of viable historic buildings when possible (redevelopment) and new buildings that fit the historic character of these neighborhoods (infill development). UMX characteristics include locating buildings close to the sidewalk, encouraging pedestrian activity with the use of street-level facades, and promoting density by encouraging multiple story buildings and eliminating the requirement for off-street parking spaces.

Some high profile parcels that have been rezoned are prime for redevelopment. These include the former Coca‐Cola bottling facility at 10th and Princess streets, the former Rippy automotive repair center at Market and 10th streets, the parcels that serve as the gateways into the city, such as the auto sales lot on S. 3rd Street near the Memorial Bridge, and many others.

Because the zoning classification only affects future development, owners of the 602 parcels that were rezoned do not have to do anything to comply with the new ordinance.

Read more about the Urban Mixed Use District (UMX). 

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