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(1) Description and Purpose. The intent of these regulations is to:

(a) Improve the appearance and function of large commercial developments in any commercial zone.

(b) Encourage efficient use of land resources and urban services.

(c) Encourage mixed use.

(d) Support transportation options.

(e) Promote detailed, human-scale site and building design.

(2) Application of Standards.

(a) In addition to the standards of EC 9.2170 Commercial Zone Development Standards – General, except as provided in subsection (b) below, all of the standards in this section apply to any new building with 25,000 square feet or more of floor area in commercial or non-residential use, and the portion of the development site specifically affected by the new building.

(b) The standards in subsections (5), (6), (7), (9) and (11) do not apply with the Downtown Plan Area as shown on Map 9.2161(6) Downtown Plan Map.

(3) Building Entrances.

(a) All building sides that face an adjacent street shall feature at least one customer entrance. (See Figure 9.2173(3) Large Commercial Facilities – Building Entrances.)

(b) Where a building faces more than two adjacent streets, excluding those with limited access, this requirement shall apply only to two sides of the building.

(c) Corner entrances, placed at an angle of up to 45 degrees from the primary street, as measured from the street lot line, may be substituted for separate entrances required under subsection (b), above. (See Figure 9.2173(3) Large Commercial Facilities – Building Entrances.)

(4) Off-Street Parking.

(a) No off-street parking shall be located between the front facade of any new building(s) and the primary adjacent street.

(b) Individual parking areas may be no larger than 55,000 square feet in size. Separation between individual parking areas may be achieved by placement of internal accessways. Such accessways used to separate parking areas shall have at least one travel lane, curbs, and sidewalks at least 8 feet in width on both sides of the access way.

(5) Vehicle Connections Between Sites. For development sites that abut an arterial or collector street, at least one internal vehicle accessway connection must be made between the subject development site and adjacent sites zoned for commercial use.

(6) On-Site Pedestrian Circulation. In place of standards set forth in EC 9.6730 Pedestrian Circulation On-Site, the following standards shall apply to large commercial facilities:

(a) A continuous internal pedestrian walkway, no less than 8 feet in width, shall be provided from the public sidewalks or right-of-way to all customer entrances of all buildings on the development site, and to all public sidewalks and paths abutting the development site.

(b) Sidewalks, no less than 8 feet in width, shall be provided along the full length of building walls featuring a customer entrance, and along any wall abutting public parking areas. Such sidewalks shall be located at least 6 feet from the wall of the building to provide planting beds for foundation landscaping, except where features such as arcades or entryways are part of the facade.

(c) Sidewalks, no less than 8 feet in width, shall be provided for direct connection to entrances of all new and existing buildings on the development site to one another, except entrances used for loading and unloading freight.

(d) Internal pedestrian walkways provided in conformance with subsection (a) above shall provide weather protection features such as awnings or arcades within 30 feet of all customer entrances.

(e) At least one pedestrian accessway connection, a minimum of 8 feet in width, shall be made to connect the buildings on the subject development site to all adjacent sites either developed or zoned for commercial, office, residential, or institutional use.

(f) All on-site pedestrian walkways located in vehicle use areas shall be distinguished from driving surfaces through the use of durable, low maintenance surface materials such as pavers, bricks, or scored concrete to enhance pedestrian safety and comfort, as well as the attractiveness of the walkways.

(7) Interior Yard Landscaping. Interior yards abutting a lot with a residential zone shall be provided with landscaping that meets the requirements in EC 9.6210(7) Massed Landscape Standard (L-7). The required landscaping may be pierced by pedestrian and vehicular access ways.

(8) Service and Loading Areas.

(a) Loading docks, outdoor storage, utility meters, mechanical equipment, trash collection, trash compaction, and other service functions shall comply with the standards stated in EC 9.2170 Commercial Zone Development Standards – General.

(b) Outdoor areas for the display and sale of seasonal inventory shall be permanently defined and landscaped as set forth in EC 9.2170(8) Outdoor Merchandise Display.

(9) Delivery and Loading Facilities. Delivery and loading facilities shall be set back a minimum of 30 feet from interior yards abutting residentially zoned lots with required setbacks landscaped to at least the standards in EC 9.6210(4) High Wall Landscape Standard (L-4).

(10) Exterior Wall Articulation, Facades, and Ground Floor Windows.

(a) Exterior building walls shall not continue along an uninterrupted plane for more than 100 feet. An uninterrupted plane is a wall that has no variation in exterior surface along its length. Except for building walls facing an alley, ground floor facades 100 feet or greater in length, measured horizontally, shall incorporate wall plane projections or recesses having a depth of at least 3 percent of the length of the facade and extending at least 20 percent of the length of the facade. (See Figure 9.2173(10)(a) Large Commercial Facilities-Exterior Wall Articulation.)

(b) Ground floor facades that face streets adjacent to the development site shall have arcades, collonades, display windows, entry areas, awnings, or other such features along no less than 50 percent of their horizontal length. (See Figure 9.2173(10)(b) Large Commercial Facilities-Exterior Facades.)

(c) Except for building walls facing an alley, ground floor walls shall contain windows (as stated below) at the ground level. The windows may extend a maximum sill height of 4 feet above finished grade to any head height. The portion of window area meeting this standard is from the sill (bottom edge) to the head (top edge) including portions up to 9 feet above the finished grade. Alcoves, entryways, and extruding portions of the wall shall be treated by measuring through such areas as though along the flat wall of a building. (See Figure 9.2173(10)(c) Large Commercial Facilities-Ground Floor Window Calculation.) Solid walls are prohibited along street frontages. This standard does not apply to parking structures. For a wall with a loading dock, the wall length referred to in subsection (10)(c)(1), below, shall exclude the wall area affiliated with the loading and unloading of freight.

1. General Standard. The windows in any walls that require windows shall occupy at least 50 percent of the length and 25 percent of the ground floor wall area. Required window areas shall be either windows that allow views into working areas or lobbies, pedestrian entrances, or display windows. The bottom of the windows shall be no more than 4 feet above the finished grade.

2. Corner Lots. On corner lots, the general ground floor window standard stated in subsection (c) must be met on one street frontage only. On the other street(s), the requirement is ½ of the general standard. The applicant may choose on which street to apply the general standard.

(11) Interior Yard Setbacks from Residential Zoning. Interior yard setbacks shall be a minimum of 30 feet from abutting residentially zoned lots.

(12) Adjustments. Except for the Downtown Plan Area, adjustments to the standards in this section may be made, based on criteria at EC 9.8030(6) Large Commercial Facilities Standards Adjustment. Within the Downtown Plan Area as shown on Map 9.2161(6) Downtown Plan Map, adjustments to the standards in this section may be made based on the criteria at EC 9.8030(16).

(Section 9.2173, see chart at front of Chapter 9 for legislative history from 2/26/01 through 6/1/02; amended by Ordinance No. 20280, enacted February 24, 2003, effective March 26, 2003; amended by Ordinance No. 20353, enacted November 28, 2005, effective January 1, 2006; and amended by Ordinance 20433, enacted June 8, 2009, and effective July 10, 2009; amended by Ordinance No. 20514, enacted July 22, 2013, effective August 24, 2013.)