City of Wausau Zoning Code Rewrite wins 2020 APA-Wis Award

Posted by on Feb 25, 2021 in News | 0 comments

City of Wausau Zoning Code Rewrite wins 2020 APA-Wis Award

WAUSAU, WISCONSIN. The City of Wausau Zoning Code Rewrite was adopted in 2019 and received a 2020 Planning Excellence award from the American Planning Association Wisconsin Chapter.

Wausau, a community of 40,000, is limited in its ability to physically grow. Boxed-in due to town incorporation over the past 20 years, the City of Wausau worked with Vandewalle & Associates to capitalize on the Zoning Code as a tool for growing tax base without substantial annexation.

The highly customized ordinance includes multiple “missing middle” districts designed for small-scale multi-family and townhomes. It promotes new infill housing by enabling varied unit types and tenure in existing neighborhoods, while protecting neighborhood character. The ordinance also introduces three distinct downtown districts tailored to specific development forms, character, and uses—including a high-rise development district, a historic Main Street district, and a downtown-fringe district.

The rewrite process included extensive public involvement through stakeholder interviews, a public workshop, meetings with the Plan Commission and City Council, and a public review open house.

The Wausau ordinance complies with new state and federal requirements. The adopted ordinance can be found here and the map can be found here. 


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