The City must review all its redevelopment area plans and ensure they are in compliance with Local Redevelopment and Housing Law and the standards outlined in the Land Use and Community Form Plan (LUCFP)
. The City should sunset those plans where the goals and objectives have been achieved, amend outdated plans, and ensure the Land Development Ordinance is updated accordingly.
Moreover, the City will have to designate new areas in need of redevelopment and amend the boundaries of some designated areas. To align the current Redevelopment Plan Zones identified in the LUCFP, the City should undertake Preliminary Investigations to amend the following designated areas:
The Roebling Complex Redevelopment Area Plan should be split into two different redevelopment areas that cover the East and West sides of Route 129. The area West of Route 129, which includes the Sun National Bank Center, has a unique character as a result of the construction of the arena. Future development must have both a strong relationship to the arena and the uses and form across S. Broad Street. In contrast, the area around to the east of Route 129 still contains many of the historical industrial buildings and should continue to develop in close relationship with the neighborhoods on that side of Route 129. Splitting the Redevelopment Plans will make them easier to understand and allow for more contexts sensitive regulations. An alternative solution is to create two separate sections of the Redevelopment Plan for the Roebling Complex. This would not require the City to update the Preliminary Investigation. John Fitch Way 3 and Lower Assunpink should be combined to create the Downtown Waterfront Redevelopment Area Plan The City should investigate expanding the Route One Industrial Redevelopment Area Plan and combining it with the Coal Port, Enterprise Avenue, and New York Avenue Redevelopment Area Plans The City should investigate expanding the Cass Street Redevelopment Area to include the Prison Complex. Although a long-term project, the City has identified the need to move the prison from its current location: it provides an unwelcoming “gateway” into the City reinforcing negative stereotypes about the City.
Reviewing redevelopment plans, updating them, and conducting new preliminary investigations is likely to be an expansive and time-consuming process. However, doing so will likely produce a more streamlined development process that will facilitate investment in the City and ensure that residents are aware of what can be built in their City.