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Small cities interested in the kind of growth that makes them stronger should be paying attention to what is happening in Mansfield, Texas. ---Joe Palmer, HUBA Communications Director
HALTOM CITY, TX, June 22, 2022 /24-7PressRelease/ -- Six months ago, leaders in Mansfield Texas undertook a significant reform for Mansfield's historic downtown district. Desiring to preserve the character of downtown and spur development consistent with historic downtown, Mansfield's leaders switched from use-based zoning to a form-based code.
Charles Marohn, Jr., author of Strong Towns, a Bottom-Up Revolution to Rebuild American Prosperity, is a proponent of form-based codes. Form-based codes assure that an area has a cohesive look but allow for a variety of uses within spaces in the area covered by the code.
Writing on the Strong Towns' website, Senior Editor Daniel Herriges shares details on form-based codes and their advantages in a post entitled 6 Reasons Your City Needs a Form Based Code.
Haltom United Business Alliance has urged leaders in Haltom City to adopt a form-based code in an overlay district that would encompass the areas of South and Central Haltom most in need of revitalization.
"In the six months since they moved to a form-based code, Mansfield has seen four new projects start in its historic downtown," said HUBA Founder Ron Sturgeon. Since their first successes, they are now working on using a lot of the same changes along US287, another area burgeoning in growth. Most of these changes will have been implemented in less than 18 months. Sturgeon says "Haltom city has done nothing to try and bring businesses back or make it easier to open one in the same 18 months. Sturgeon believes Haltom City needs to learn to be competitive. Cities like Mansfield, he says, will pull investments from other cities not looking at changes.
"Small cities interested in the kind of growth that makes them stronger should be paying attention to what is happening in Mansfield, Texas, and should be open to the idea of adopting reforms like form-based codes," said HUBA Communications Director Joe Palmer.
"We must recognize the southern and central parts of Haltom City are in decline and that we need to make plans and execute them as soon as possible to bring small businesses back and create the prosperity that these areas once enjoyed," added Palmer.
"An overlay district with a form-based code would be a very good start if Haltom City would like to see some of the kind of results Mansfield is achieving," noted Palmer.
About Haltom City
Haltom City is a medium-sized city between Dallas and Fort Worth in Tarrant County, TX. The city is diverse and majority working class, with a growing population that is approximately 10% Asian-American and 45% Hispanic. Haltom City benefits from being only minutes from both DFW Airport and Downtown Fort Worth, with direct access to major highways including I-820 and SH-121. Small businesses that have historically provided products, services, and jobs to residents included a once thriving automotive industry. The city has seen a decline in small businesses, especially automotive businesses. The city is healthy financially, with median household income growing around 8% in the past year. Haltom City has an opportunity for continued growth through undeveloped land and many vacant buildings, especially in major corridors close to the city's center. The city has good staff and a city manager who is interested in seeing more businesses come to Haltom City, but they can only do as directed by City Council.
About Haltom United Business Alliance
Haltom United Business Alliance (HUBA) wants to give members of Haltom City's business community an advocate and to keep those businesses informed about issues that affect them. They want to make sure Haltom City is business friendly and nurtures small business growth, including automotive businesses, and bring more restaurants including breweries and a major grocery store to the city. New businesses and growth in existing businesses will create a stronger tax base which will allow the city to pay its first responders wages that are competitive with surrounding cities while improving Haltom City's facilities and infrastructure. HUBA believes that the southern and central parts of the city need a revitalization plan, to prevent further degradation in those areas, and wants that to happen before the inner-city experiences increased crime and more blight. As retail and office uses are in decline, its more critical than ever to attract new businesses. They believe that such a plan requires a strong relationship and support of the business community. Anyone who owns a business in Haltom City is eligible to join HUBA. Dues are $20 annually or $50 for a lifetime membership, and membership is 100% confidential. To join, contact Joe Palmer at (682) 310-0591 or by email at [email protected]. Visit the group's Facebook at Haltom United Business Alliance.
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