Zoning & Land Use Regulations

Poughkeepsie, NY

Applied Expertise

  • Zoning
  • Public Involvement
  • Urban Design
  • Design Standards
  • Economic Development


Home to Vassar College, the City of Poughkeepsie is an historic city of 50,000 located on the Hudson River. The city’s goals include downtown revitalization, preservation of existing housing stock, historic preservation, quality of commercial development and waterfront redevelopment. A series of public meetings and focus group sessions were convened to help ensure the new zoning would help the city fulfil its goals.

In its new zoning and land use regulations, Poughkeepsie wanted a clear, concise and user friendly code that would streamline approvals and improve community design character. Our approach was to implement a form-based code in commercial areas with design standards to accomplish neighborhood preservation and revitalization. peter j. smith & company rewrote, reorganized and simplified the entire code to create a hybrid of a form-based code. Graphic design standards and matrices for districts and signs were incorporated to assist in facilitating the development process.