Land Use & Housing
Land-use policies establish the pattern of development and redevelopment of public and private property throughout a community. Policies that guide housing affect accessibility, energy demand, affordability, and access to opportunities for a community’s residents. Other land-use decisions can impact the balance of biodiversity, access to and consumption of environmental resources, GHG emissions associated with mobility, and the climate resilience of a community.
Land Use & Housing Strategies
Below are the specific Land Use & Housing goals outlined in the 2022 Environmental Sustainability Plan. Clicking on one of them will display the list of actions to be incorporated into the Village's workplans. They are broken down into completed, in-progress, and future and progress is updated quarterly.
- Increase average population per developed acre by 10% by 2030 (from 11.3 residents per acre of developed land to 12.4)
- Assess the community's affordable housing needs and determine how housing for low and moderate income households can become sustainable in accordance with the Sustainability Plan.
- Identify underutilized paved areas and incentivize conversion to sustainable green space or infill development. Conversion focus should take into consideration neighborhood's green space, heat island mitigation, affordable housing, and bike/walk mobility needs and prioritize site utilization based on addressing the greatest needs at each site as determined through appropriate engagement with the community, particularly people traditionally under represented.
- Study ability to construct accessory dwelling units in Skokie and potential to increase rental and home ownership opportunities compatible with both established neighborhoods and new development. Specific consideration should be given to utility service placement and parking requirements.
- Explore “market development” strategies, which would remove barriers for small-scale retail and essential services like daycare centers
- Study the usage of a Sustainability Development Incentives such as density bonuses or creation of an expedited review process for development projects that have mixed-used zoning (residential, retail, and office uses) and which meet sustainability goals of this plan.
- Reconsider Village parking requirements and establish revisions which support the goals of this plan such as reducing overall parking requirements, establishing parking maximums, elimination or reduction of parking minimums, establishing minimum EV and bike parking requirements or incentives. Particular focus should be given to the Transit Oriented Development areas within a ¾-mile radius of train station and transit stops. Incorporate bicycle parking requirements in commercial districts.
- Identify and publicize additional options for building improvement programs for both owner-occupied and rental properties that would reduce energy consumption for vulnerable populations and those living under high energy burden through added insulation, air sealing, passive energy systems, heat pumps, and higher efficiency equipment.
- Manage disproportionate impacts of energy and resource costs associated with decarbonizing energy sources on lower-income or vulnerable parts of the community through development of new and promotion of existing incentives and grants supporting decarbonization strategies for low-income households (owner occupied and rental).
- Use grant, state, and municipal funding to implement an income-based payment system to allow low-income and fixed-income residents to participate in energy efficiency and weatherization program(s) at little to no cost.
- Explore the potential for installation of re-deployable solar microgrid systems for resilient power use in community emergency management and hazard/disaster response. Systems can be semi-permanently installed at public facilities to provide day-to-day power and re-deployed in emergency response
- Update community plans, zoning, and design standards to increase housing and community resilience to the impacts of climate change, including flooding, heat island, and extreme weather particularly for populations most vulnerable.
- Study changes to zoning ordinances to allow businesses such as restaurants, grocery stores, and medical facilities in or near residential areas.
- Establish a policy to include climate risk and vulnerability considerations into capital planning and budgeting.
- Study the zoning ordinance to allow higher density development. Ordinance revision should consolidate and revise residential zoning categories to allow for an increase in housing density in all areas of the community.
- Incentivize the use of green infrastructure such as bioswales, permeable pavement, rain gardens, areas, and other pervious surface strategies to reduce flood risk and minimize sediment entry into creeks from trails and roads.
- Support neighborhood-based plans for all neighborhoods to encourage neighborhood identity, engagement and development. Plan goals should be to increase housing density, options, affordability, and equity while furthering the goals of the Sustainability Plan.