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Student Housing Top Priority For Bloomington Development Plan Officials

City officials discuss student housing, downtown development at a UDO planning meeting. (Tyler lake, WTIU/WFIU News)

Student housing and downtown development took up much of the discussion at a meeting about Bloomington’s Unified Development Ordinance Tuesday morning.

The UDO works as a guide for city officials when considering new construction and development in the city.

Members of the Common Council, Plan Commission, and Board of Zoning Appeals met with representatives from Clarion Associates, the land-use consulting firm helping draft the UDO.

One proposal would remove the requirement for the specific number of dwelling units for new apartment buildings.

Donald Elliott of Clarion Associates says this would allow buildings to be flexible over time, allowing more locations that are viable for non-student housing.

Elliott says the current dwelling unit cap may be driving larger, three and four bedroom construction, mainly used for student housing.

The proposal also recommends reducing the areas downtown that require first floor retail spaces. Elliott says this reflects the number of unused or underused first floor retail space currently available in the city.

The city will work with Clarion Associates to garner feedback from the community. They will present the second portion of the proposal in September.

Want to contact your legislators about an issue that matters to you? Find out how to contact your senators and member of Congress here.

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