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The City of Titusville, Florida / Community Development / Community Redevelopment Agency / Redevelopment Plan Supplement 2015

Redevelopment Plan Supplement 2015

The Community Redevelopment Agency was created on October 12, 1982. The Redevelopment Plan was adopted on August 1, 1984. The Redevelopment Plan was amended and updated in 1996 and again in 2004 consistent with Chapter 163.360 and the provisions of Chapter 163.362, Florida Statutes. The Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) has accomplished many of the objectives set forth in the original Plan; however, many of the issues of concern identified in the earlier plans still exist today.
 
The Redevelopment Plan Supplemental Report summarizes the projects accomplished from the inception of the original plan. In addition, the supplemental report incorporates the goals and recommendations of the Downtown Master Plan for future growth. The Downtown Master Plan sets forth goals for coordinated growth in the Downtown CRA through a series of strategic initiatives that can be realized over the next fifteen to twenty years. The plan identifies investments aimed at preserving the established qualities of the Downtown area and creating a vibrant mixed-use town center environment. The plan also identifies redevelopment opportunities to enhance local market conditions for new commercial and residential development and to maximize the revitalization potential of the entire CRA.


2015 REDEVELOPMENT PLAN SUPPLEMENTAL REPORT 
 
The Redevelopment Plan Update was adopted in 1996, and Supplemental Plan Updates were adopted in 2008 and 2012.  The Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) has accomplished many of the objectives set out in the original Plan and the subsequent Update.  In April of 2002, the CRA held a workshop during which projects were discussed and prioritized.  The workshop resulted in the adoption of the following vision statement:
 
“A vibrant mixed use district that celebrates and reflects ecological and space heritage and culture.”
 
Overall, as redevelopment occurs in the City there is a need to remain flexible.  Second, there is a need to identify the market forces that are shaping the available options and target efforts to take advantage of these forces.  Third, redevelopment is generally more expensive than new development.  These factors create the need to offer developers the support of the CRA, including the investment of the Tax Increment revenues generated by their projects back into the redevelopment area.
 
Because of the CRA’s accomplishments, as well as evolving economic and development conditions, this Supplemental Plan Update is being developed.
 
 
REGULATORY CONTEXT
 
Community Redevelopment Act of 1969
The Community Redevelopment Act of 1969, in Chapter 163, Part III, of the Florida Statues, authorizes local government to establish community redevelopment agencies (CRA’s) to improve blighted areas within their jurisdictions.  The Act sets forth the legal process by which local governments may establish CRA’s and provides financing and regulatory tools to accomplish the goal of improving selected areas. 
 
Chapter 163.355, F.S. requires local governments desiring the establishment of a CRA to adopt by resolution a finding that one or more blighted areas exist within their jurisdiction and that the rehabilitation, conservation or redevelopment or combination thereof of such areas is necessary in the interest of the public health, safety, morals, or welfare of area residents.
 

Statutory Definition of Blight (Chapter 163.340(8), F.S.) 
A blighted area means an area in which there are a substantial number of deteriorated or deteriorating structures, in which conditions as indicated by government maintained statistics or other studies are leading to economic distress or endanger life or property and in which two or more of the following factors are present: 
 
  1. Predominance of defective or inadequate street layout, parking facilities, roadways, bridges, or public  transportation facilities;
 
  1. Aggregate assessed values or real property in the area for ad valorem tax purposes failing to show any appreciable increase over the 5 years prior to the finding of such conditions;
 
  1. Faulty lot layout in relation to size, adequacy, accessibility or usefulness;
 
  1. Unsanitary or unsafe conditions;
 
  1. Deterioration of site or other improvements;
 
  1. Inadequate and outdated building density patterns;
 
  1. Falling lease rates per square foot of office, commercial, or industrial spade compared to the remainder of the County or municipality; 
 
  1. Tax or special assessment delinquency exceeding the fair value of the land;
 
  1. Residential and commercial vacancy rates higher in the area than in the remainder of the County or municipality;
 
  1. Incidence of crime in the area higher than in the remainder of the County or municipality;
 
  1. Fire and emergency medical service calls to the area proportionately higher than in the remainder of the County  or municipality;
 
  • A greater number of violations of the Florida Building Code in the area than the number of violations recorded in the remainder of the County or municipality;
 
  1. Diversity of ownership or defective or unusual conditions of title which prevent the free alienability of land within the deteriorated or hazardous area; or
 
  • Governmentally owned property with adverse environmental conditions caused by a public or private entity.
 
The methodology for data collection and analyses utilizes a breakdown of the criteria described in the Florida Statues to determine the existence of blight.  Each of the statutory criteria is examined to determine the presence or absence of that condition.  The original Redevelopment Plan for the City of Titusville adopted in August 1984 presented detailed information on the presence of slum and blight.  The main areas identified at that time included the following:
 
 
          Poor Downtown Image and Environmental Quality
Some of the specific areas included the lack of a positive image and identifiable downtown area, lack of indication that one is approaching a downtown area, lack of public amenities, deteriorating facades and signage, little continuity in design or physical enclosure of street corridors,  lack of landscaping to soften the hardscape, noise and fumes from US1 traffic and the railroad. 
 
Pedestrian and Traffic Circulation
Low quality pedestrian circulation, no biking corridors, the division of US1 discourages east-west pedestrian movement and the railroad limits the traffic pattern flexibility including east west flow.
 
Land Use
Lack of public access and exposure of the waterfront, lack of tourist lodging and facilities in the downtown area, existing land uses that discourage pedestrian traffic, vacancy in storefronts, deterioration of residential area, lack of retail services and a weak market area near downtown and the lack of mixed use development to draw people to the downtown area.
 
The existence of slum and blight is still found in the Downtown area today.  It is in the best interest of the community to eliminate vacancies.  Efforts should be made to keep the downtown’s historic structures occupied to prevent physical deterioration as vacant buildings have the tendency to deteriorate faster than occupied buildings.  As redevelopment occurs, a mixture of shops, services and residences work to support other development. The improvement of infrastructure is needed to improve circulation and support pedestrian traffic.  To create the redevelopment “vision” improvement is still necessary to revitalize the Downtown area.  Many of the projects from the inception of the CRA have greatly improved the area; however, many issues identified earlier still exist today.     
 
 
HISTORICAL ACCOMPLISHMENTS
 
History of the Titusville CRA prior to the 1996 Update
According to the original redevelopment Plan, the CRA invested $2,734,626 in capital improvements and of this total $911,704 came from outside sources in the form of project grants.  These initial improvements include: 
 
  • Riverview Place Realignment (now called Stephen House Way) at a cost of $103,412.
 
  • Emma Parrish Theater Street Lighting for a cost of $12,939.
 
  • The Washington Avenue Streetscape in 1988 at a cost of $211,632.
 
  • A Historic Survey in 1987 through a grant from the Florida Bureau of Historic Preservation for $9,800.
 
  • Broad Street (Space View) Park Acquisition with grants from the State and County for $307,000.
 
  • Titusville Commons was completed in 1992 for a total cost of $1,253,520 including design, construction and land purchases.
 
  • The Veterans’ Memorial was completed on July 4, 1991 with design fees of $4,000 and private commitments provided as a local match to funds granted by the Tourist Development Council of $366,512.
 
  • The Waterfront Master Plan was completed in 1992 for a cost of $87,955 including a $37,000 grant from the Florida Department of Community Affairs.
 
  • Space Walk Hall of Fame Plan for a cost of $124,000.
 
  • Space View Park Phase I was completed in 1994 for a total cost of $344,183 with funds contributed by the CRA, the Tourist Development Council and grants from the Land and Water Conservation Fund.
 
  • Space View Park Phase II was completed in May of 1995 for a cost of $168,436 with CRA and grant funds.
 
  • The Veterans Memorial Pier was re-decked in 1995 at a cost of $40,323 with funds from a FIND grant, the Pier Volunteer Committee and General Fund.
 
Accomplishments after the 1996 Update
  • The St. Johns Water Management District Conceptual Permit application which included a lower level fishing pier, restrooms and fishing village with a boardwalk, the A. Max Brewer Memorial Parkway Roadway realignment, Space Walk of Fame and the elimination of the Harbor Town Intertidal Zone, shoreline stabilization, Orange Street hardscape, McCotter’s slough bridge and Downtown stormwater treatment.  The city sought funding from the Florida Recreation Development Assistance Program (FRDAP), Florida Inland Navigation District (FIND), and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).  
 
  • The Veterans Memorial Pier is an ongoing project and has received funds from various Federal, State and County grants, park impact fees and matching funds from the City.
 
  • The Gemini segment of the Space Walk of Fame was completed with the exception of four granite planters in 1999.  The total project cost was $320,298.  
 
  • The Municipal Marina received a grant from the State and FEMA for $617,700 and the City provided the remaining funds for a total of $705,942.  Additional funds from the State and FEMA were used to make additional repairs to the seawall and repairs to the B and C docks. 
 
  • Sand Point Park received funds from the County and State to dredge the slip for a cost of $53,187.
 
  • Façade Grants for $110,000 were provided by the Community Development Block Grant program for the North Brevard Historical Museum, restoration of the Walker Hotel and buildings on the north side of Julia Court.
 
  • The Water Resources Department constructed a new force main pumping station in the historic district along Riverside Drive.
 
  • In 1997, the Main Street Association and the CRA split the cost of downtown Historic Banners for a total cost of $6,000.
 
  • The CRA split the cost of a hotel/conference center feasibility study with a prospective developer. 
 
  • Vectorworks invested approximately $750,000 in the old Thompson Trawler site.
 
  • In November 2000, the citizens of North Brevard passed a Parks and Recreation referendum that included improvements to Sand Point Park, Marina Park, the Veterans Memorial Pier, the Space Walk of Fame and Downtown Urban Parks.
 
  • The CRA funded a Historic Walking Tour project in 2002/2003.
 
  • The CRA and the Stormwater Utility in 2001 split the $350,000 purchase of the McCotter Ford site from the YMCA.
 
  • The CRA purchased the parking lot south of Julia Street between Hopkins Avenue and Washington Avenue from Sun Trust in 2002 for $207,915.
 
  • In 2003, the CRA extended the seawall at the Gemini segment of the Space Walk of Fame for a cost of $5,900.
 
  • In 2003, picnic tables were added to the Julia court hardscape at a cost of $1,459.
 
  • In the fall of 2003, the Space Walk of Fame Foundation constructed a pavilion as a community project next to the Gemini Monument for a cost $15,000.  
 
  • The Florida Department of Transportation added Historic District signage at Garden Street and I-95 in 2003.
 
  • In FY 2007-2008, funding for $120,000 was allocated to update the Central Business District regulations.  The revision was aimed at streamlining the process, increasing the capacity to accommodate new growth and preserving the historic character of the community.
 
  • The City allocated $169,000 in fiscal year 2008-2009 to update the existing Urban Design Manual that was originally compiled in the early 1980s.  The manual is the third part of the overall update to the Stormwater Development Plan, Land Development Regulations and Urban Design Manual.  The manual was completed and approved in November 2010 and has been an effective tool in the redevelopment process for use with the Land Development Regulations. 
 
  • The US 1 Corridor Streetscape Plan, a wide-scale resurfacing and road enhancement project, has been completed. The project adjusted the horizontal alignment, calmed traffic and provided greater pedestrian activity, provided shaded areas, added parallel parking and upgraded the sidewalks.  The City received a landscape grant from FDOT to provide irrigation and plant materials that is being maintained by City staff dedicated to the CRA. 
 
  • In July of 2011, the City was awarded $15,000.00 by the State Division of Historic Resources to update the City’s existing Historic Property Survey.   The consulting firm of Janus Research from Tampa Florida was awarded the contract for a cost of $25,000 to conduct the survey update, which was completed in July 2012. 
 
  • In order to further historic preservation efforts within the Community Redevelopment Agency district, the Titusville Historic Preservation Board was created in 2011.  During its inaugural year, the Historic Preservation Board developed a Historic Properties Ordinance.  In 2013, a part-time Historic Preservation Officer was hired.  In addition, the first application was received for a historic designation of the residence at 902 Indian River Avenue.
 
  • In 2013, improvements to the Julia Street Parking lot were completed.  The improvements included a redesign to the parking lot, increasing the number of parking spaces and additional landscaping.  The City is also moving forward to install solar lighting in the parking lot.  As the first solar powered parking lot in the City of Titusville, the project will be a pilot program to determine the feasibility of solar lighting within other areas of the City.
 
  • In 2013, the CRA engaged a local artist to create street banners, which have been installed on streetlights within the District.
 
  • After the completion of the US 1 Corridor improvements, the CRA prepaid $850,000 of the US 1 Corridor loan.  This action resulted in savings of  $1.27 million and preserved funds for a local match for Garden Street Complete Street project and funding of reduced Main Street streetscape project
 
 
PLANNING APPROACHES
 
The Downtown Titusville Community Redevelopment Agency continues to develop solutions to issues that were identified in 1996 as well as evolving economic, development and community issues as they arise.  These are discussed below.
 
Update to Provide Economic Incentives in the Downtown
After peaking in fiscal year 2007-2008 at $921,847, Tax Increment Financing (TIF) revenues for the Downtown CRA decreased from fiscal year 2007-2008 through fiscal year 2012-2013.  In fiscal year 2013-2014, the property values increased slightly as the general economy began to rebound from the recession that began in 2008.
 
Tax increment revenues in fiscal year 2008-2009 totaled $876,391.  The revenue continued to decrease in fiscal year 2009-2010 to $793,246.  In subsequent years the revenues declined from 724,997 in fiscal year 2010-2011, $655,653 in fiscal year 2011-2012 and $646,170 in fiscal year 2012-2013 before increasing slightly in fiscal year 2013-2014 to an estimated $682,027. 

Tax Revenues Chart FY08-FY14


Although tax increment revenues have increased slightly in fiscal year 2013-2014, they are still significantly less than they were in fiscal year 2007-2008.  In addition, as tax revenues and property values are increasing countywide, Titusville is lagging behind in the percentage increase.  This lag can be attributed to several factors, including the end of the Space Shuttle program and restructuring of the space program at Kennedy Space Center, and generally lower property values in Titusville.  To aid recovery, the community has expressed interest in the use of CRA funds to assist with economic development in the Downtown.  By their nature, redevelopment activities can result in economic development opportunities within the redevelopment area.  Therefore, CRA activities that may be considered in conjunction with private and public economic development activities, include, but are not limited to, the following:

 
  • Assistance with site plan and building permit fees;
  • Assistance with new business work plans;
  • Assistance with commercial build-out;
  • Assistance with renovations and structural improvements for the historic downtown commercial buildings;
  • Assistance in expanding the workforce with new job bonus programs; and
  • Assistance with capital investment for new business ventures.
 
These incentives will be provided to maximize the impact of future public investment and to attract private sector investment.  This initiative will help ensure that the Downtown area continues to develop in accordance with the community “vision”.
 
 
Five-Year Capital Improvement and Funding Plan for CRA Projects
Looking toward the future, the following projects have been identified in the Five Year Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) for the CRA.  The CIP timeframe extends from Fiscal Year 2015-2016 to Fiscal Year 2019-2020.  In addition to those capital projects identified below, the CRA will also utilize funding to maintain completed CRA projects, including monuments, park improvements, streetscape improvements and other redevelopment projects, as necessary.
 
Project Name FY15-16 FY16-17 FY17-18 FY18-19 FY19-20 Total
Park Improvements/
Recreational Facilities
  $50,000 $50,000 $50,000 $50,000 $200,000
Amtrak Station       $170,000 $2,065,000 $2,235,000
Community Policing $60,000 $60,000 $60,000 $60,000 $60,000 $300,000
Downtown Stormwater Improvements         $250,000 $250,000
Downtown Stormwater Plan     $100,000     $100,000
Building Improvements (Facade/Structural) $50,000 $50,000 $50,000 $50,000 $50,000 $250,000
Marketing   $15,000 $15,000 $10,000 $10,000 $50,000
Master
Plan Update
      $120,000   $120,000
Property Acquisition         $1,000,000 $1,000,000
Downtown Welcome Center $160,000         $160,000 (Project Total $512,500)
Special
Event Grants
$56,000 $58,000 $60,000 $60,000 $60,000 $294,000
Total $326,000 $233,000 $335,000 $520,000 $3,545,000 $4,959,000

Becoming a Trail Town
The Coast to Coast Connector will link communities between St. Petersburg and Titusville along its entire length into a major destination route that will allow residents and visitors to explore Central Florida by bicycle or foot. The 250-mile Connector trail includes two of the state's most popular trails, the Fred Marquis Pinellas Trail and the West Orange Trail, both of which have fueled the economic transformation of communities, particularly Dunedin and Winter Garden.  The Connector is expected to be complete by 2017 and provides a unique opportunity for the Community Redevelopment Agency as Titusville will serve as the eastern-most point on the trail.  In addition, Titusville is also located on the St. Johns River to Sea Loop, extending north to St. Augustine and east to the Canaveral National Seashore and Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge.
 
With the convergence of these trails, the CRA has established the goal of becoming a “Trail Town”, taking advantage of the economic opportunity that an influx of visitors can bring.  As the downtown becomes more of a destination for commerce and special events, additional amenities will be needed.  These may include additional street furniture, ADA improvements, and other amenities that enhance the functionality of the downtown.  The CRA may choose to fund these improvements directly, or contribute funds to public/private partnerships for the funding of needed amenities.
 
Plans to transform downtown into a Trail Town, includes development of a downtown welcome center, with public restrooms and a retail component.  In addition, improvements to roadways, sidewalks and public areas may be necessary.  The potential for private/public partnerships may also include entertainment venues, tourist accommodations, parking, signage, safety improvements and additional streetscape improvements. 
Vibrant Community Initiative
The CRA has reviewed and approved several steps as part of a Vibrant Community Initiative.  A facet of this initiative is becoming a Trial Town, as described above.  Other focused include increasing residential development downtown, support of arts and entertainment facilities, and integrating existing recreational facilities into the downtown.
 
 The Redevelopment Area contains two parks within its boundaries.  Marina Park and Sand Point Park are underdeveloped parks that are well utilized by residents and tourists alike.  Current park improvements include play areas, a dog park, skateboard park, pavilions, and restrooms.  Improvements to parks that have been identified by the CRA to expand recreational opportunities within the district include splash pads, MBX bike track, and band shell to support concerts and other large community events.  These projects are expected to be developed through partnerships with Brevard County and community organizations such as Kiwanis and Rotary Clubs.  CRA funding may also be utilized to maintain these improvements in partnership with Brevard County.
 
In addition to improvements to the park, the CRA has also identified that increased connectivity to the parks from the downtown is required to fully integrate the two areas, and to take advantage of the natural synergy that exists between vibrant downtowns recreational facilities.  A future project for the CRA is to identify, construct and maintain improvements to connect the parks and downtown.  Improvements could include enhanced signage, street and sidewalk markings, and other physical or visual mechanisms to better unite these community resources together. 
 
Community Policing
Chapter 163.360 (3), Florida Statutes states that community redevelopment plans may provide for the development and implementation of community policing innovations.  In order to increase the current police presence within the downtown area, the CRA may choose to fund additional staffing over budgeted FY2013-2014 levels.  Police activities will be focused on providing coverage during downtown events, and in response to the increased need for law enforcement within the downtown.  Issues that have been identified by downtown merchants and residents include increased property crime, vagrancy and other activities that reduce property values and hamper economic development efforts.  CRA funds will not supplant existing police activities.
 
In addition to increased police presence in the redevelopment area, funding could also be utilized for innovative programs to improve monitoring and signage in the area.  As an example, the CRA may wish to consider a grant program to assist property owners in specified areas with the purchase of electronic surveillance equipment that can assist in identifying persons engaged in criminal activity.  As the community policing program matures, changes to the innovations needed to address evolving issues are anticipated and considered to be within the scope of this plan.
 
Historic Preservation
A thriving historic residential district within the Community Redevelopment Area is a very important component of the City’s redevelopment strategy.  Successful downtowns require a residential component, and the existing historic residential district furthers that goal. 
 
The Titusville Historic Preservation Board was created in 2011 for the purpose of preparing, updating and maintaining an appropriate plan of protection for historic sites and districts within the City.  As the City’s current historic residential district generally includes properties abutting Indian River Avenue and Riverside Avenue from Grace Street to Riverview Place, the Historic Preservation Board’s activities directly relate to the Community Redevelopment Area.
 
Since its creation, the Historic Preservation Board has assisted in the development of the historic preservation ordinance, which was adopted by the City Council in 2012.  The Board has also conducted two (2) informational workshops and received the first application for historic designation under the ordinance.  A crucial step in the progress toward designation as a Certified Local Government was engaging the services of a Historic Preservation Officer, which occurred in 2013.  The Historic Preservation Board is now moving forward to become a Certified Local Government; continue to increase interest in historic preservation and process requests for local designation as they are received.
 
Funding by the CRA for expansion of historic preservation activities is warranted due to the importance of preserving irreplaceable historic resources and maintaining residential property values.  Activities to be considered may include additional funding for the historic preservation officer; purchase of historic plaques, monuments and informational materials; and additional training opportunities for staff and Board members.
 
Commercial Beautification Grant and Structural Rehabilitation Programs
On August 18, 2007, the CRA approved a budget appropriation of $80,000 for a Façade Improvement Program.  Staff has created the recommended Policies and Procedures document, the Funding Agreement, and the Application.  The program would allow a grant to a commercial or mixed-use property owner of up to $40,000 to complete façade and exterior property improvements with a ½ to one match.  Therefore, the CRA could fund $20,000 if the property owner is willing to match those funds with $10,000.  The Program also provides for repayment in the event that the property owner does not maintain the improvements or sells the property.  Any repayment of the grant would be forgiven after a period of five years. 
 
The intent of this program is to provide an incentive to existing and new property owners to upgrade the exteriors of Downtown properties to increase Downtown aesthetics and property values, thus potentially leading to higher occupancy rates and revitalization.
 
Since its creation, the Commercial Beautification Grant program has made sixteen (16) grants for a total of $307,507 resulting in improvements totaling $1,087,524 – a return on investment of 3.5 to 1.
 
The success of the Commercial Beautification Grant program has resulted in a welcoming downtown that encourages commerce.  However, it is also recognized that some of the historic structures within the downtown are in need of rehabilitation and enhancement in order to be fully utilized.  Therefore, the CRA will consider the development of a program to fund needed structural improvements in addition to façade improvements.  This funding could be in the form of grants, loans or other public/private partnerships to further the redevelopment goals of the agency.
 
“Side Street” Streetscape
The “Side Street” Streetscape includes South Street, Pine Street, Julia Street and Broad Street and is an extension of the US 1 Corridor Streetscape Plan.  These “side” streets do not qualify for FDOT assistance since they are not part of the state roadway system.  Therefore, funding for this portion of the project will be through the CRA and other sources.  In 2013, the CRA decided to reduce the Main Street Streetscape project to $150,000.  The Public Works staff has developed a plan to fit the reduced budget and improvements are expected to be complete in 2016.
 
Florida Power and Light Utility Conversion  
The US 1 Corridor project also includes the conversion of the existing overhead Florid Power and Light (FPL) utility lines.  The CRA has approved a budget amendment to obtain a cost estimate to convert the existing lines to an underground system.  The portion of the project targeted for the conversion will extend along the US 1 Corridor from Grace Street to Garden Street.  Additionally, the City plans to convert the existing FPL utility lines along Broad Street to an underground system. 
 
Targeted Property Acquisition
The Downtown Master Plan includes public sector initiatives that include the acquisition of targeted property in the Downtown area.  The acquisition of land is a strategic measure to help ensure that the area evolves in a coordinated and desirable manner.  The initiatives are aimed at leveraging and maximizing the impact of future public-sector investments in attracting private sector investments throughout the Downtown area, as well as for regional stormwater treatment.     
 

The Wayfinding Signage Program
The Wayfinding Signage Program was a priority project to install directional signage for the Historic District, the Veteran’s Memorial, the Mercury Monument, the Space Walk of Fame, the fishing/shrimping pier, Sand Point Park, the Municipal Marina etc.  The signage was designed to create a sense of place and attract visitors to the Downtown area.  The City of Titusville staff participated in the Countywide Wayfinding Signage Program, which has not been implemented.
 
Signage and wayfinding can also include the use of QR codes and digital devices, such as smart phones.  The advantages to such programs include relatively low cost and ease in modifying the information provided.
 
Event Sponsorship and Marketing
The Downtown Community Redevelopment Agency has created a Special Events Grant program to support special events within the downtown area that are consistent with activities authorized by the Community Redevelopment Act.  The events are intended to revitalize the area by increasing pedestrian traffic, provide opportunities for downtown merchants to attract new business, and provide visibility for vacant retail and restaurant space.  The grant program began in 2012, and is anticipated to become more competitive as the program matures.  It is also the intent of the CRA that the grant program assists special events to become self-sustaining after a number of years to permit funds to be utilized to establish other events or to be utilized for capital projects.
 
The CRA should consider other programs to market vacant buildings and existing businesses.  For example, contests to attract entrepreneurs, encouraging pop-up stores and incubators are programs that are worthy of funding consideration by the CRA.
 
Banner Signs
The CRA has agreed upon designs for street banner signs that have been installed on over 150 streetlights throughout the CRA.  The designs highlight various downtown activities, such as music, dining and the riverfront.  Pole banner signs can also be installed on a seasonal basis, or to highlight a significant multi-day event within the District.
 
The Downtown Stormwater Development Plan
The City has allocated $100,000 to prepare a Downtown Stormwater Development Plan.  The objective of the Downtown Stormwater Development Plan is to identify either a regional stormwater management system or other alternatives capable of meeting the stormwater requirements for new CRA development or redevelopment, with the following goals:
 
 
  • Provide flood attenuation and improve water quality,
  • Provide an alternative for stormwater management,
  • Identify different techniques that could be utilized to manage the stormwater that is generated from additional developments or re-developments,
  • Determine the feasibility of implementing in the study area the identified techniques,
  • Review applicable City’ rules and regulations, and identify those that need to be amended recommending the appropriate changes,
  • Review other applicable City policies and stormwater requirements that require compliance or modification. 
 
The Stormwater Development Plan will identify opportunities for including central public infrastructure facilities that will help to attract private-sector investment and infill development.
 
Implementation of a master stormwater plan could include the purchase of properties within the community redevelopment area, or properties lying outside of the area boundaries that directly affects stormwater conditions within the area.  Projects considered for funding could also include bio-retention projects, baffle boxes, shared stormwater facilities and other address stormwater quality and quantity issues currently experienced in the redevelopment area.
 
 
PLANNING FRAMEWORK 
 
The Downtown Mixed Use Smart Code for the Community Redevelopment Area
The City adopted the Downtown Master Plan in April 2006, which was created by the University of South Florida’s Center for Community Design and Research. The plan is intended to guide and coordinate growth in the Downtown area through different initiatives.  New design and land development regulations were identified in the Master Plan and in October 2010, the City adopted the Downtown Mixed Use (DMU) Smart Code for the Community Redevelopment Area.  In an effort to provide residents and visitors with a memorable experience, the City envisions the addition of new mixed-use buildings on infill lots, new open space amenities, enhanced streetscape conditions, new public facilities and new regional stormwater parks.  The standards were developed to increase the area’s capacity to accommodate new growth while preserving the historic character of the community. 
 
During the three years since the adoption of the DMU code, staff has identified a number of minor revisions intended to enhance the functioning of the code, or correct typographical errors.  These amendments were adopted by Council in December 2013.  It is anticipated that future updates to the Code will be needed
 
The Urban Design Manual
The Urban Design Manual is a tool for City staff to review projects and for the developer to utilize as a guide to supplement the existing land development regulations and ordinances.  The guidelines are applicable to new development, improvement to existing structures and include consideration of existing historic buildings/homes.  The guidelines are intended to improve the aesthetic and functional conditions through the regulation of design parameters while providing flexibility.  The Urban Design Manual was adopted in 2010.   As development within the community redevelopment area matures, updates of the Urban Design Manual are likely to become necessary.  The CRA should re-evaluate the manual on a periodic basis and update, as needed.
 
 
Downtown Master Plan
The purpose of the Community Redevelopment Plan Update was to develop a plan for coordinated growth in the Downtown CRA through a series of strategic initiatives that can be realized over the next fifteen to twenty years.  The plan identifies investments aimed at preserving the established qualities of the Downtown area and creating a vibrant mixed-use town center environment.  The plan also identifies redevelopment opportunities to enhance local market conditions for new commercial and residential development and to maximize the revitalization potential of the entire CRA. 
 
The long-range vision reflects the objectives articulated by residents at workshops.  These objectives include creating a series of clearly defined centers along the length of the CRA.  The plan envisions the addition of new mixed-use buildings on infill lots along the Washington/Hopkins one-way pairs, new open space amenities, enhanced streetscape conditions and new public facilities (parking structures and stormwater ponds) that will increase the area’s capability to accommodate new growth. 
 
The plan outlines new standards for future development.  These standards or regulations are intended to preserve the historic character while creating more appealing physical conditions.  The goal is to realize a downtown area through “smart growth” that will attract and sustain private investment and create a unique sense of place.
 
The following implementation recommendations in the Plan are intended as follow-up measures in the Downtown CRA over the next five to eight years.  The Private Sector Initiatives indicated include the following: 
 
  • Implement the River Park mixed-use development next to the Stormwater Park.
  • Develop a variety of new residential opportunities throughout the CRA.
  • Develop in-fill housing in the North and South Palm Avenue areas and adjacent to the FEC railroad.
  • Begin development of the Sand Pointe Plaza project and general area.
 
The Public Sector Initiatives are as follows:
 
  • Conduct a real estate/market analysis and feasibility study for the CRA.
  • Acquire land and assemble feasible development parcels around the Garden Street and US 1 intersection.
  • Acquire land in the North Palm Avenue and South Palm Avenue areas.
  • Implement the Stormwater Park project.
  • Acquire land in the Town Center, Civic Center and Southern Gateway areas for central parking and stormwater facilities
  • Implement a priority streetscape enhancement program throughout the CRA and at major entry points. 
  • Implement proposed FDOT improvements along Washington Avenue and Hopkins Avenue.  (This strategy has been implemented.)
 
The recommended regulatory issues include the following:
 
  • The adoption of long-range development plan for the CRA.
  • Modify the Comprehensive Plan to reflect the Town Center concept.
  • Modify existing zoning or establish overlay district to attract desired types of development.
  • Adopt a “form based” code and development standards. (This strategy has been implemented with the adoption of the Downtown Mixed Use Smart Code and Urban Design Manual.)
  • Create a local historic district for the Old Town residential area.
  • Establish historic preservation criteria for commercial properties in the Town Center area.
 
These strategies are aimed at leveraging and maximizing the impact of future public investment in attracting private sector investment.  Within the next five (5) years, the Master Plan should be re-examined to ensure that it continues to meet the community’s goals and vision for the community.
 
Garden Street Corridor Study
In 2011, the City adopted a resolution encouraging complete street improvements be made to qualified streets on which pedestrians and motorists would benefit from a multimodal approach to street design.In 2013, Garden Street was considered for complete street funding through the TPO.Unfortunately, right-of-way acquisition, funding and engineering required precludes Garden Street from designation as a good candidate for the complete street program within the funding and construction deadlines.
Subsequently, the City of Titusville requested the Florida Department of Transportation conduct a corridor study to review possible options to encourage multimodal options along Garden Street, which serves as a main gateway into the City.The long-range vision of the City is to undertake a Complete Street project along the length of Garden Street, including that portion between the FEC railroad and the Indian River Lagoon within the CRA.Titusville has made great strides to revitalize downtown, including a US 1 Streetscape project completed in conjunction with FDOT in 2007.The City’s redevelopment efforts in the area continue to focus on improving access to different types of transportation, especially pedestrian traffic within downtown.
Garden Street is an excellent candidate road for a corridor study to implement complete street design improvements. Garden Street connects several neighborhoods, I-95 visitor traffic and pedestrian traffic from the existing and future Rails to Trails project to the Indian River Lagoon, Downtown Titusville and the new Max Brewer Bridge.
Based on a recent review of this road by the City of Titusville, TPO staff, FDOT liaison and Kittleson & Associates at a meeting  in 2013, it is apparent that there are no simple answers to make this roadway more accessible to different types of transportation without serious consideration of significant improvements.
 
Downtown US 1 Corridor Study
In 2010, the City completed an urban design manual for the downtown area to assist in the efforts to describe the vision for the downtown area and the structures to be built. The UDM also discussed that the purpose of the citizen workshops to assist in creating the regulations for downtown called for a “coordinated design pattern of streets, sidewalks, and other transportation facilities including multi-modal forms of transportation”.
 
In 2013, the City made application to Florida Department of Transportation for a corridor study to determine if US 1 Highway and the network of streets, alley, sidewalks and trails connecting to US 1 Highway can be modified or redesigned to disperse traffic and reduce the length of automobile trips in the downtown.The City initiated the request to determine options to increase multi-modal opportunities within the downtown.The intent of City is that the study results will be used a catalyst for planning efforts and infrastructure investments to increase pedestrian safety; enhance bicycling opportunities; and coordinate with future re-development of the existing but unused Florida East Coast Railroad train station in downtown.
 
CONCLUSION
The Titusville CRA has successfully established a financial, planning and regulatory framework for enhanced development within the Community Redevelopment Area.  Capital projects and funding priorities are focused on addressing the issues of lack of tourist lodging and facilities; lack of retail services in downtown; low quality pedestrian and biking facilities; poor downtown image and lack of public amenities to further the goal of becoming a Trail Town.  In addition, the Community Redevelopment Agency is seeking to make the redevelopment area safer through both design standards and community policing initiatives.  As the Community Redevelopment Agency develops plans for the future of the Titusville Community Redevelopment Area, the goal continues to be “A vibrant mixed use district that celebrates and reflects ecological and space heritage and culture.”


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