Hyannis’s major economic areas – Downtown and Route 132 – will be the focus of an intensive look at how both areas and the residential areas that surround and connect them function.
Land use, housing production, infrastructure, social and demographic characteristics and the overall regulatory environment are among the issues to be reviewed. Reauthorization of the Downtown Hyannis Growth Incentive Zone, or GIZ, was the impetus for the planning project. Expanding to include the regionally important commercial area provides an opportunity to look at Hyannis more holistically and comprehensively.
A GIZ is a designation by the Commission that aims to direct development and redevelopment into areas with existing development and adequate infrastructure, and away from sensitive resource areas. Through designated GIZs, towns may enhance designated Economic Centers by encouraging a concentrated mix of residential and commercial uses within these locations while ensuring that all growth is properly served by adequate infrastructure.
Late last year, the Commission approved an 18-month extension of the GIZ to October 2017. The extension will allow this community engagement project to inform the eventual application.
The outcomes from the project will be an application for renewal of the Downtown Hyannis Growth Incentive Zone and set of recommendations for regulatory reforms and possible infrastructure support to advance the planning and vitality of the Route 132 area.
This work will be aided by the addition of new planning tools, including a three-dimensional modeling application and scenario-planning tools that can evaluate options at regional, local and parcel-specific levels.
The project will also benefit from a fiscal impact model designed specifically for the project. The fiscal impact model can evaluate different potential development scenario to understand the trade-offs inherent in different options for future development.
The Commission has an existing body of work on Route 132, including a 2010 corridor study offering suggestions to guide development and design and the multitude of recommendations for the area transportation network in the Hyannis Access Study.
Meetings with upwards of 70 stakeholders from business and property owners downtown to residents in and around both project areas will be scheduled and held through December. From there, smaller focus groups of stakeholders will be convened for a set of meetings through early 2017.
Commission staff has already met with a majority of Barnstable Town Councilors, the Hyannis Main Street Business Improvement District board of directors. Meetings with the remaining town councilors are being scheduled. Meetings were also held with the management of the four major retail plazas on Route 132.
Surveys for the project will be disseminated in the coming weeks.