Thursday, September 24, 2009

Berkeley Downtown Plan

Matt Taecker of the City of Berkeley Planning Department will present an overview of the new Downtown Plan for Berkeley. He will be joined by Jim Samuels, a member of Berkeley Design Advocates and member of the City Planning Commission when the Plan was developed.

Matt Taecker will provide an overview of the Downtown Area Plan that was adopted by Berkeley's City Council in July but may now be decided in referendum in 2010. The Downtown Area Plan incorporates a full spectrum of best practices for creating a more livable and sustainable city center, including the implementation of major street and open space improvements, minimization of greenhouse gases, historic preservation, and economic revitalization. High urban densities, and the feasibility of building types and heights, would provide the vehicle for realizing this ambitious vision. Planning Commissioners who participated in the development of the DAP will add their perspective to the presentation.

For the past twenty-five years Matt Taecker, AICP has developed innovative area plans, city and regional plans, development codes, and mixed-use master plans. Most recently Taecker has developed the Downtown Area Plan for Berkeley, CA. The Downtown Berkeley Plan is a city center vision emphasizing sustainability, historic preservation, retail revitalization and improvements to the public realm. Prior to working for the City of Berkeley, Matt was a founding Principal of Catalyst, a specialized firm specializing in urban placemaking and ecological design. Taecker was also a Principal at Calthorpe Associates, where he helped developed and promoted "transit-oriented development" practices at a variety of scales: from building block to more sustainable regions. Taecker has taught at the University of Southern California and at University of California, Berkeley, where he received both a Masters in Architecture and a Masters of City Planning degrees.

Two local architects also closely involved with the Plan are Jim Samuels and Jim Novosel.

Jim Samuels has worked in Berkeley and the Bay Area since his graduation from UC Berkeley. He was a member of the Berkeley Landmarks Preservation Commission, 2004-5 and was the Chair of Berkeley Planning Commission, 2007-8. He is also an active member of Berkeley Design Advocates.

Jim Novosel is a current member of the Berkeley Planning Commission. He is the principal of The Bay Architects and has received numerous design awards for East Bay residential, commercial, and historic projects.


Regional and Urban Design Forum: Berkeley Downtown Plan

Time: Noon - 1:30pm

Location: AIA East Bay Chapter Office, 1405 Clay Street, Oakland.

Contact: 510/464-3600 or Douglas Frazier, AIA

Cost: None; this forum is open to all. Please RSVP.

1.5 CES/LU

For more information: 510/464-3600

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