In early 2015 the Committee-of-the-Whole (COW) met with Staff to discuss the potential redevelopment of the Central Business District (CBD), more specifically, Block Two (bounded by Scranton/Oak/North/Walnut) and Block Three (bounded by Scranton/Oak/Evanston).  To best prepare for potential downtown redevelopment, the Village engaged Teska Associates, Inc. (Teska), a land use planning firm, to perform a visual preference survey of both CBD Blocks Two and Three, and using input from the community, prepare Downtown Design Guidelines. 

The Downtown Design Guidelines are derived from the community outreach activities and best design and planning practices.  They are intended to promote the vitality and economic health of Lake Bluff’s downtown by providing design direction on the type, character and quality of the built environment that unify Blocks Two and Three with the surrounding CBD areas.  Additionally, the purposes of the Downtown Design Guidelines are to:

  • Implement the general policies and recommendations of the 1998 CBD Planning Study by providing more detailed guidelines and specifications governing building architecture and improvements to public streetscapes within Blocks Two and Three; and
  • Establish a set of standards and identify elements of building streetscape design that the Village should encourage in the downtown.

In the spring of 2015 the Village commenced with a public engagement process and sought feedback from a variety of community stakeholders, including elected and appointed officials and CBD neighbors. A website was created for the Downtown Visioning Project that shared information with the community, and from April 24 to May 31, 2015, invited the community to upload photographs of their favorite destinations for use in the Visual Preference Survey.  The photographs were then used in the online survey (available from June 17 to July 31, 2015) and at the Open House held on June 24, 2015.  At its meeting on October 26, 2015 the Village Board accepted the draft Downtown Subarea Visioning Report (Report) and referred it to the Plan Commission and Zoning Board of Appeals (PCZBA) and the Architectural Board of Review (ABR) for finalization. 

Update:

 

  • On August 8th the Village Board approved second and final reading of an ordinance amending the Village's Comprehensive Plan.  The amendment to the Comprehensive Plan adopts: (i) the Ten Planning Principles for CBD Block Two (bounded by E. Scranton Ave., Walnut Ave., E. North Ave. and Oak Ave.) and CBD Block Three (bounded by E. Scranton Ave., Oak Ave., E. North Ave. and Evanston Ave.); (ii) amendments to the downtown land use plan; (iii) and amendments to the downtown long-range parking plan as presented below.  Please know this recommendation does NOT include a recommendation regarding the Downtown Design Guidelines.  The Village Board had approved first reading at its meeting on July 25, 2016.  

    August 8, 2016 Village Board Packet

    July 25, 2016 Village Board Packet


    Supplemental material
  • On June 8, 2016 the PCZBA concluded the public hearing to consider amending the Comprehensive Plan and recommended the Village Board approve the following: (i) the Ten Planning Principles for CBD Block Two (bounded by E. Scranton Ave., Walnut Ave., E. North Ave. and Oak Ave.) and CBD Block Three (bounded by E. Scranton Ave., Oak Ave., E. North Ave. and Evanston Ave.); (ii) amendments to the downtown land use plan; (iii) and amendments to the downtown long range parking plan as presented below.

    PCZBA Recommendation: Planning Principles, Downtown Lane Use Plan and Long Range Public Parking Plan

    June 8, 2016 PCZBA Packet

  • On June 7, 2016 the ABR met and recommended the Board approve the following: (i) the Downtown Design Guidelines with certain photographs removed (refer to the June 7, 2016 ABR Packet) noting the remaining photographs are intended to illustrate what is discussed in the caption and other aspects of the photograph may not be suitable for development in Lake Bluff; and (ii) establish a downtown daylight plane (refer to the June 7, 2016 ABR Packet) requiring any third story to be setback from the wall of the second floor.

    June 7, 2016 ABR Packet
  • On May 18, 2016 the PCZBA commenced with a public hearing to consider the Proposed Amendments to the Village's Comprehensive Plan.  Following feedback from the public and questions and discussion from the PCZBA Members, the PCZBA continued their discussion to a special meeting on June 8, 2016 (7:00 p.m.). 

    Any person desiring to be heard or desiring to present any evidence or testimony relating to said matter should appear at the time and place above specified. Information will be available for inspection beginning on the Friday before the aforementioned meeting date at the front counter of the Village Hall, 40 East Center Avenue, Lake Bluff, Illinois and online.

    May 18, 2016 PCZBA Meeting Packet

  • On May 3, 2016 the ABR discussed the Downtown Design Guidelines and recommended the following changes: i) third floors should be less visible to pedestrians from ground level, and ii) apply a daylight plane restriction to the third floor to further regulate building height.  At its next meeting, scheduled for June 7, 2016 (7:00 p.m.), the ABR will review the photographs currently used in the Downtown Design Guidelines and consider a recommendation regarding which photographs are appropriate and characteristic of the types of development within the Village.

    May 3, 2016 ABR Meeting Packet
  • On February 9, 2016 the PCZBA and ABR were scheduled to further discuss the Downtown Design Guidelines and Planning Principles; however, due to the late hour, the discussion was continued to an upcoming joint workshop meeting. 
  • On January 20, 2016 the PCZBA and the ABR met for a workshop meeting and discussed the design guidelines for Blocks Two and Three presented by Teska Associates.  The members drafted revisions to the 10 planning principles contained within the Downtown Design Guidelines and received comments from the public.  The PCZBA /ABR anticipate scheduling an additional workshop meeting to finish the discussion of the Downtown Design Guidelines and forward a recommendation to the Village Board. 

    Click here to view the revised 10 planning principles.
  • On December 16, 2015 the PCZBA and the ABR held a joint workshop and received a report and presentation of the findings from Jodi Mariano of Teska. Following a discussion of the results and neighborhood feedback, further consideration and discussion of the report is scheduled for January 20, 2016 (7:00 p.m.) in the Village Hall Board Room.

 

February 9, 2016 Joint PCZBA and ABR Meeting Packet

January 20, 2016 Joint PCZBA and ABR Meeting Packet

December 16, 2015 Joint PCZBA and ABR Meeting Packet

For additional information, please contact Brandon Stanick, Asst. to the Village Administrator, at 847-283-6889.