Lee Brand's lofty task: turn City Hall dreams into reality

Ashley Swearengin’s plans raised expectations sky-high. Lee Brand is tasked with implementing the plans and meeting the expectations.

Downtown Development Code



The Skinny: Fresno had been writing plans and land-use codes for decades. It was time to reform, rewrite and consolidate all that failed or stale scientific management. The Downtown Development Code is to be a major step in that direction.

The Rundown: “The Downtown Code implements the Downtown Neighborhoods Community Plan (DNCP). Within the Downtown Code boundaries, the DNCP boundary overlaps four Community Plans that were replaced by the DNCP: the Central Area Community Plan, the West Area Community Plan, the Edison Community Plan, and the Roosevelt Community Plan. The goals, policies, and actions of the DNCP replace the goals, policies, and actions of these underlying plans. Accordingly, by implementing the DNCP, the Downtown Code replaces all land use and development standards contained in the prior Community Plans….The Downtown Code implements the Fulton Corridor Specific Plan (FCSP). The FCSP boundary amends the prior boundary of the Fulton Lowell Specific Plan. The goals, policies, and actions of the FCSP replace the goals, policies, and actions of the Fulton Lowell Specific Plan. Accordingly, by implementing the FCSP, the Downtown Code replaces all land use and development standards contained in the Fulton Lowell Specific Plan.” (Source: Introduction to Downtown Development Code)

The Pledge: “I’m thrilled that these years of work have culminated in this unanimous vote. When we first started this process, we had a lot of arguments about whether or not we needed a downtown, whether or not we should be planning for the future of our city. To go from that to a 7-0 vote is really a remarkable thing for our community. It shows how much we’ve grown and how much we’ve moved forward over the last eight years.” – Mayor Ashley Swearengin, Oct. 20, 2016, after the City Council approved the Downtown Development Code. (Source: The Fresno Bee)

1 comment
  1. The City of Fresno is the 5th largest City in the State of California and has an annual Budget of almost a billion dollars, with approximately 4,000 employees, and does NOT have an Internal Audit Unit to ensure the proper accounting, internal controls and safeguarding of all City Assets are in place and functioning as intended. As the retired Principal Internal Auditor for the City of Fresno, effective January 2016, this area should be of significance to the City and newly elected Mayor and all Council Members. All the top ten Cities in the State of California, except the City of Fresno, have an Internal Audit Unit. For the structure, benefits and type of Internal Audits performed by the Internal Audit Unit I oversaw while employed with the City, I reference all viewers of this comment to the City’s Administrative Order 1-10. I would hope that this significant area of concern and importance might be #11 on the Mayor’s Listing going forward. Thank You!

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