D2 Uptown Rezoning and Innovation Overlay District
D2 Uptown District Land Use Study
In 2017, the City commissioned a land use study of the D2 Uptown area to initiate the process of updating the zoning regulations that will apply to this area (study linked below). The purpose of the D2 Uptown Land Use Study was to analyze the existing makeup of the district’s land uses, development patterns, transportation networks, market forces, and the community factors that influence the district and provide recommendations for updated zoning regulations/other development considerations to catalyze reinvestment. The City identified that the existing D2 Form Based Code (regulating plan map linked below) is not the appropriate zoning tool to encourage growth and development in this district.
Rezoning of D2 Uptown Area
At the request of City Council, the City of Portsmouth has replaced the 541 parcels of the D2 FBC district with traditional zoning districts based on recommendations from community engagement, public review, and the D2 Uptown Land Use Study. The New Zoning Map for the D2 area ensures the new zoning regulations reflect the reality of existing and potential land uses, current and future development forms, appropriate densities, and other development standards.
In addition, the new Innovation Overlay District will be superimposed on the new zoning districts for the D2 Uptown area, which will clarify requirements for development and facilitate new growth and development.
Innovation Overlay District
In addition, effective February 1, 2021, the new Innovation Overlay District will be superimposed on the new zoning districts for the D2 Uptown area, which will clarify requirements for development and facilitate new growth and development.
What is an Innovation District?
An innovation district is a place-based urban development strategy that aims to regenerate an under-performing area into a desirable location for innovative and creative companies and workers. An innovation district is a platform for all kinds of activity that stimulate innovation while offering value to entities that drive the economy. Innovation districts have proven to be practical solutions for cities to modernize their economies and pivot from traditional industrial-based production to technology-driven services.
For more information on innovation districts see:
Innovation District Virtual Town Hall
The City of Portsmouth held a virtual town hall on October 21, 2020 to get input from property owners and interested parties regarding the proposed Innovation District and D2 rezoning. Below are materials related to the town hall.
Town Hall Meeting Video
Why is the D2 Uptown area a good candidate for an innovation district?
The D2 area contains a number of assets for identifying this area as an innovation district including:
- Considerable available land for development and redevelopment
- Significant publicly-owned land primed for private investment
- Connection to City’s future fiber optic ring providing opportunities to deploy Smart City concepts
- Linkage to future wind energy investment projects by PMT
- Considerable public/civic activity with Behavioral Health Services, Social Services, Health Department buildings and the future Hampton Roads Community Health Center headquarters
- Locational advantages including:
- Central to Portsmouth
- Adjacent to Downtown Portsmouth and Norfolk
- Direct access to MILK to I-264 East/West and Rt. 164 Western Freeway
- Close proximity to PMT and VIG ports
- Nearby institutions including Naval Hospital, Maryview Hospital, Norfolk Naval Shipyard, and Coast Guard
- Neighboring academic institutions including IC Norcom High School, Norfolk State University, Tidewater Community College, Old Dominion University, and ODU Tri-Cities Center
What are the potential benefits of the Innovation Overlay District?
- The Innovation Overlay District will provide the regulatory framework for the desired redevelopment and land use options.
- The Innovation Overlay District will give the D2 area a sense of place, an identity, and a vision for inclusive growth.
- The Innovation Overlay District will facilitate the ability of the city to generate accessible jobs.
- The Innovation Overlay District will contribute to economic growth by helping generate revenue.
- The Innovation Overlay District will help to provide educational and skill-training opportunities for Portsmouth residents.
The rezoning of the D2 Uptown district was adopted by City Council during the adoption of the newly re-written Zoning Ordinance in the fall of 2020 to be effective February 1, 2021. The City’s Planning and Economic Development departments will jointly be coordinating the development of an Innovation District area master plan including a potential new placemaking strategy. That process is proposed to commence during 2021. Information regarding those efforts will be available on this page. For additional information or questions, contact Julie Chop at [email protected] or Meg Pittenger at [email protected] or by phone at 757-393-8836.
More Information about Innovation Districts
Innovation District Information https://www.brookings.edu/essay/rise-of-innovation-districts
Winston-Salem, North Carolina https://www.innovationquarter.com/
Indianapolis, Indiana https://www.16tech.com/
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma https://okcinnovation.com
San Diego,California http://www.ideadistrictsd.com/vision
Detroit, Michigan http://interface-studio.com/projects/detroit-innovation-district
Barcelona, Spain https://safesmart.city/en/district-22-barcelona
St. Petersburg, Florida https://stpeteinnovationdistrict.com/the-district
Chattanooga, Tennessee https://www.chainnovate.com
Gainesville, Florida http://innovationdistrictgainesville.com
Boston, Massachusetts https://starthub.org/resource-type/innovation-district