That automatic designation means the project developer must get a conditional use permit, which comes extra requirements such as more parking spaces than a traditional apartment building. Based on the new code, parking requirements for student-focused housing would be much closer to a one spot per bedroom ratio.
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Another requirement might be a certain required percentage of studio and one-bedroom units.
During that process, the city and Flagstaff City Council may be able to help shape the development so it is a better fit with the community and surrounding neighborhood.
These large student-focused projects would also only be permitted in certain parts of the city in designated “activity centers” that are better suited for large projects. One such location, for example, is in and around the Village at Aspen Place. There are several activity centers along Milton Road, and at some major intersections such as such as Ponderosa Parkway and Route 66 and Butler Avenue and Fourth Street.
By pushing large developments into activity centers, the city can also ensure there is already a base level of public infrastructure and transportation options ready to handle the project, Symer said.
But the plan doesn’t just address the large developments that have garnered the most public attention and often ire — it also addresses smaller one- and two-unit developments built in neighborhoods that are still student-focused.