Community input needed for full-scale equity review of Land Development Code

October 16, 2020

Residents’ feedback and suggestions are needed as Louisville Metro conducts a full-scale review of the Land Development Code (LDC) to identify and correct inequitable land use regulations and policies within the code.

The LDC is a set of rules that regulates development and what can be done with private property. Many elements within the LDC have not been revised since the early 1960s and continue to incorporate discriminatory policies first introduced in 1931.

“While racist regulations remain on our books, we cannot fully move toward creating a more equitable city for our marginalized communities,” said Mayor Greg Fischer. “This review will provide residents an opportunity to pinpoint land use regulations and practices that have negatively impacted their lives, as well as recommend changes they’d like to see made to the Land Development Code.”

The community meetings will be held:

  • Saturday, Oct. 24 at 10 a.m.
  • Monday, Oct. 26 at 10 a.m.
  • Tuesday, Oct. 27 at 6 p.m.

Residents can watch and submit comments or questions via Facebook Live on the Develop Louisville page, or via WebEx online or by phone. For details about how to attend the different meetings, visit https://louisvilleky.gov/ldcreform.

Those who cannot attend one of the three meetings can ask questions or submit comments by emailing [email protected] or calling the LDC reform hotline at (502) 574-4737.

The review is the continuation of a process that started with the adoption of our 20-year comprehensive plan, Plan 2040, in 2018 and the release of the Housing Needs Assessment and Advancing Equity Report in early 2019. These documents laid the groundwork by identifying deficiencies, potential actions and what we want Louisville to be.

In advance of the review, Louisville Metro also contracted Berkley-based architecture and urban design firm Opticos Design to conduct a diagnostic report of the city’s housing and related land use regulations that affect residents inequitably. The report was completed in July 2020.

Metro Council passed a resolution on Aug. 20 requesting the LDC review and the drafting of recommendations for more equitable and inclusive development. Louisville Metro Planning and Design Services staff is leading the review effort.

“Examining the Land Development Code through the lens to equity is a big step in the right direction of insuring that all of our citizens are treated fairly, regardless of their ZIP code,” said Metro Council President David James, D-6.

Following the meetings, Planning and Design Services staff will draft a list of recommended policy changes and amendments to the LDC, which will be reviewed by the Planning Commission, Metro Council and other legislative bodies that have zoning authority in Jefferson County. Before any recommendations are adopted, the Planning Commission will host a public hearing for residents to provide additional comments.

While some recommendations may go before the Planning Commission for consideration within a few months, the process will continue well beyond that with additional recommendations possibly being made over the next couple of years.

For more information about efforts to reform the Land Development Code, visit https://louisvilleky.gov/ldcreform.

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