Municipal Design Review in Metropolitan Chicago
March 18, 2014
Both theorists and practitioners see design standards as shaping the "look" of the community and built environment over the long run — with significant underlying ideology. Planning professionals may view design guidelines and review processes as useful tools to communicate local preferences and resolve issues. And, design standards and form-based codes have become powerful branding and placemaking tools for suburbs in the Chicago metropolitan area and nationwide.
This program and discussion served to highlight contrasting perspectives on the benefits of design review. Drawing on observations from public architectural review commission hearings in local suburbs, Professor Robert Rotenberg, from DePaul University, considered case studies of how design standards work to shape the development decisions by stakeholders in Cook County, Illinois. Attorney and consultant John Hedrick summarized the regulatory background and recent developments in the Chicago metropolitan area regarding best practices in utilizing design guidelines.