Archive for the "Press Release" Category

City’s ‘Innovation District’ Wins Award for Best Practice in Zoning

Earlier this year, City of Poughkeepsie officials approved Innovation District zoning for downtown, creating a more streamlined process to get projects approved.

Last week, the city’s plan was recognized at the Westchester County Association/Hudson Valley Economic Development Corp’s 3rd Annual Real Estate Summit in Tarrytown.

 The city won the award for “Best Practice in Zoning,” and it was accepted by Mayor Rob Rolison, Planning Director Natalie Quinn and Community Development Coordinator Paul Hesse. More than 300 real estate and planning professionals attended the May 14 event held at the Westchester Marriott Hotel. 

City of Poughkeepsie Mayor Rob Rolison talks about the city’s Innovation District at the Westchester County Association/Hudson Valley Economic Development Corp’s 3rd Annual Real Estate Summit in Tarrytown.

 “We are grateful for the honor,” said Mayor Rolison. “Getting the district approved took years of community planning, public outreach and studies to get it right, and we believe we did. The Common Council also should be recognized for approving the plan.”

The innovation district has created four designated zones — the “historic core,” the “civic corridor,” the “urban village” and the “creative edge.” They are contained within the arterials, spread over several blocks, from Market Street to Hamilton Street going west to east, and Mill Street to Church Street going north to south.

The district is designed to attract new development and enhance walking spaces. It is one of the biggest reworkings to the core area since the city reopened a pivotal portion of Main Street to traffic nearly 20 years ago. In partnership with Pace University’s Land Use Law Center, the Westchester County Association and Hudson Valley Economic Development Corp. have been working on a “Redevelopment Policy Playbook” since 2017. This is aimed at helping communities streamline and improve their planning, zoning and approval processes and to serve as an ongoing resource. This partnership views the city’s Poughkeepsie Innovation District as a “prime example” of best practices and will include information about in that Playbook.

City of Poughkeepsie Mayor Rob Rolison, Planning Director Natalie Quinn and Community Development Coordinator Paul Hesse with the “Best Practice in Zoning” award given to them at the Westchester County Association/Hudson Valley Economic Development Corp’s 3rd Annual Real Estate Summit in Tarrytown.

For more about the innovation district, go to http://cityofpoughkeepsie.com/rezonedowntown/archives/59

A link to the current Playbook, which is being update to include the entire Hudson Valley, can be found here: https://www.westchester.org/policy-playbook/

Poughkeepsie Innovation District Zoning Approved

Poughkeepsie Innovation District Zoning Approved

At a special meeting called by Mayor Rob Rolison on Monday, the Common Council approved an update to the city’s zoning code to establish the Poughkeepsie Innovation District. The Poughkeepsie Innovation District (PID) aims to transform the core commercial section of the city’s downtown into a vibrant economic center anchored by increased residential population and a creative economy.   Monday’s adoption marks the culmination of a multiyear endeavor by the City, which was ably assisted by the Pace Land Use Law Center and Kevin Dwarka Land Use and Economic Consulting, as well as Dutchess County and numerous other stakeholders.

Focused on “place making,” the elimination of vacant property, as well as inclusion and diversity, the PID policy framework and zoning code update represent a major step forward towards restoring Poughkeepsie’s downtown as the region’s preeminent commercial district. The proposed zoning adds flexibility in terms of uses that are allowed on a property and focuses on how building form can positively impact the pedestrian environment. This flexibility, along with a streamlined land use approval process, will make it easier for property owners to activate their buildings and fill vacant storefronts, ensuring a high concentration of commercial and cultural activity in a quality urban setting.

Mayor Rolison said, “We’re grateful to the Council members that supported the PID. We continue to see interest and investment in Poughkeepsie’s downtown, and this new policy and zoning is going to further encourage thoughtful development and vibrancy in the heart of our city.”  

Councilman Matt McNamara (D-8th Ward) said, “Carefully designed, smart updates to the City’s zoning code are a breath of fresh air in the musty library of city ordinances. This will prove to be an important legislative achievement that has a very positive impact, both in terms of the revitalization of our downtown core, and in terms of local job creation. I congratulate our Planning and Economic Development team for the fine work on this initiative, including all the public outreach and community interaction that went into making our new Innovation District a reality.” 

Planning Director Natalie Quinn said, “The adoption of the Poughkeepsie Innovation District zoning ordinance is only one step, albeit a critical one, towards the realization of a successful, vibrant and inclusive downtown. Now that the zoning foundation is in place we can begin to build upon it.”

All documents related to the project are available for download on the project website: http://cityofpoughkeepsie.com/rezonedowntown/

Innovation District Policy and Zoning Presentation

On September 6th, City of Poughkeepsie planning staff made a presentation to the Common Council regarding the proposed Innovation District policy and zoning.  An archived webcast of the presentation is available for viewing here, and the slideshow is available for download here.

Comments and questions regarding the proposed Poughkeepsie Innovation District can be emailed to [email protected]

Download: Innovation District Policy and Zoning Presentation

 

Invitation for Public Comment: Poughkeepsie Innovation District and Zoning Update

Today, the City of Poughkeepsie released the Draft Poughkeepsie Innovation District Policy Framework and accompanying zoning code regulations.  The Poughkeepsie Innovation District (PID) is a proposal to transform the core commercial section of the city’s downtown into a vibrant economic center anchored by increased residential population and a creative economy.   Moving towards the culmination of a multiyear endeavor, the City has been ably assisted by the Pace Land Use Law Center and Kevin Dwarka Land Use and Economic Consulting, as well as Dutchess County and numerous other stakeholders. Continue reading Invitation for Public Comment: Poughkeepsie Innovation District and Zoning Update