Building Types

All principal buildings in the neighborhood zones must comply with the standards of this section.

3.2.1 General

  1. An applicant must select which allowed building type corresponds to the building he/she is proposing to construct or alter, and must comply with the standards for that building type as it relates to that new construction or alteration. The applicant may choose to add optional frontage elements that correspond with the building type, per Section 3.3.

  2. Table 3A: Building Types identifies the building types allowed by zone, with cross-references for building type definitions and form and dimensional standards that apply. Each building type may house any use allowed in the zone in which it is located (refer to Article 6, Uses), unless otherwise noted.

  3. Requirements for All Building Types

    1. All principal buildings must be designed to be permanently erected on a permanent foundation and connected to all required utilities.

    2. All principal buildings must be oriented to the thoroughfares they face, with all front and corner side facades positioned parallel or radial to right-of-way lines.

    3. Where multiple principal buildings are proposed for a single lot, the proposal must include potential lot lines, which conform with this Ordinance, the purpose of which is to determine compliance with building type standards.

    4. The standards for building types do not apply to accessory structures, which are addressed by Section 6.2. However, where a carriage house is accessory to another principal building on the site, the building type standards apply to the accessory carriage house.

    5. A principal building may not have a building width, measured along the adjacent right- of-way line, which exceeds the maximum lot width, if any, put forth by the building type standards.

  4. Pedestrian-Priority Frontages

    1. On the Zoning Map, Pedestrian-Priority Frontages (PPF) may be designated within the N-1D and N-1C zones that apply to specific frontage lines.

    2. Along frontage lines designated a PPF, the following standards apply, in addition to the building type standards:

      1. Any building that is constructed along a PPF must have a finished ground floor level of between ground level and two feet.

      2. The ground floor of any facade that exists along a PPF must have a minimum transparency of 70%.

      3. An interior side yard is prohibited along a PPF, except to facilitate a passage designed in accordance with Section 10.2.8.A.

      4. Loading berths and vehicular parking entries may not be located along a PPF.

      5. A civic building is not required to meet the above standards, except for “d,” which prohibits loading berths and vehicular parking entries for all buildings along a PPF.

  5. Residential Density. A property with multiple dwelling units may have a density of no more than one dwelling unit for each 1,250 square feet of lot area in the N-2R zone, and no more than one dwelling unit for each 1,500 square feet of lot area in the N-3R zone. The following are exceptions to this standard:

    1. This standard does not apply to parcels which abut Delaware Avenue, between North Street and Gates Circle; Gates Circle; and North Street, between Main Street and Symphony Circle.

    2. This standard does not apply to any multiple unit dwelling approved under an adaptive reuse permit.

    3. This standard must not be interpreted as applying to an accessory dwelling, single-unit dwelling, or double-unit dwelling.

  6. Transitions to Residential Zones. Where any principal building is proposed on a site that abuts an interior side or rear lot line in an N-2R, N-3R, N-4-30, or N-4- 50 zone, and where the building’s height is greater than the maximum height of building types allowed in the abutting residential zone, the upper stories of the building must be set back from the respective interior side or rear setback line by at least one foot for each additional foot in height above the maximum height allowed for building types in the abutting residential zone. This may be provided with either a setback in the overall building footprint or with upper-story stepbacks above the maximum height allowed for building types in the abutting residential zone.

  7. Height Exceptions

    1. Irrespective of the provisions in Sections 3.2.2 - 3.2.12, a principal building may be erected to a height of up to six stories and 76 feet on any parcel in the N-2R zone that abuts the following:

      1. Delaware Avenue, between North Street and Gates Circle.

      2. Gates Circle.

      3. North Street, between Main Street and Symphony Circle.

    2. Irrespective of the provisions in Sections 3.2.2 - 3.2.12, a principal building may be erected to a height of up to five stories and 66 feet on any parcel in the N-2C zone, or four stories and 54 feet on any parcel in the N-2E zone, that abuts the following:

      1. Delaware Avenue, between Edward Street and North Street.

      2. Main Street, between Edward Street and East/West Delavan Avenue.

      3. Niagara Street, between Niagara Square and Ontario Street.

    3. In no case may any of the above height exceptions be applied to a carriage house building type.

  8. Exterior Facade Restrictions. Where exterior facade materials are restricted on front and corner side facades, these restrictions also apply to other facades in the following circumstances:

    1. Where the principal building contains an interior side yard, the facade material restrictions apply to the interior side facade up to a depth, measured from the building’s nearest corner at the front facade, equal to the width of the interior side yard, plus the distance between the interior side lot line and any adjacent principal building, but need not extend more than 50’ from the front facade.

    2. Where an adjacent principal building is set back from the front yard line, the facade material restrictions apply along the interior side facade up to a depth, measured from the building’s nearest corner at the front facade, equal to the depth of the front yard of the adjacent principal building, but need not extend more than 50’ from the front facade.

    3. Where an adjacent lot is undeveloped, the facade material restrictions apply to the interior side facade up to a depth of 50’, measured from the building’s nearest corner at the front facade.

    4. Where the City Planning Board finds that any restricted facade material will have an adverse effect upon adjacent properties, the City Planning Board may apply such facade material restrictions to other facades.

  9. Neighborhood Shops. An existing commercial block or shopfront house building in the N-2R or N-3R zones will be considered conforming, irrespective of the provisions of this section. Any alteration to such structures must comply with standards for the applicable building type, as follows:

    1. If a commercial block or shopfront house structure exists in the N-2R zone, any alteration to the structure must comply with the standards for the respective building type as applied in the N-2C zone.

    2. If a commercial block or shopfront house structure exists in the N-3R zone, any alteration to the structure must comply with the standards for the respective building type as applied in the N-3C zone.

  10. Elmwood Village Standards.

    1. The Elmwood Village is defined as the area north of North Street, south of Forest Avenue, east of Richmond Avenue, and west of Delaware Avenue, but not including any parcel that abuts Delaware Avenue or Gates Circle.

    2. The following standards apply to all principal buildings in the Elmwood Village that are designed to accommodate one or more commercial establishments:

      1. A commercial establishment may have a gross floor area of no more than 3,500 square feet on the ground story and 7,000 square feet overall.

      2. At least one main entrance must be provided for each 30 feet of front facade width along any ground story space designed to accommodate a commercial establishment.

    3. No more than two lots in the Elmwood Village, existing at the time of the adoption of this Ordinance, may be combined for the purposes of new construction in an N-2C or N-2E zone.

  11. Demolitions

    1. Demolition is prohibited for any principal building in an N-1D, N-1C, N-1S, N-2C, N-2E, N-3C, or N-3E zone; or any building that is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, or is a contributing structure to a National Register historic district, except where:

      1. The Commissioner of Permits and Inspection Services determines that an emergency demolition is required for the purpose of public safety.

      2. A site plan has been approved for one or more new principal buildings, or another use has been approved by the City on the site of the proposed demolition.

    2. The City Planning Board may waive this prohibition if both of the following criteria are met:

      1. The principal building proposed to be demolished does not comply with the form standards of one of the building types allowed in the zone where the demolition is proposed; and

      2. The principal building proposed to be demolished is inconsistent with the intent of the zone where the demolition is proposed.

N-1DN-1CN-1SN-2CN-2EN-2RN-3CN-3EN-3RN-4-30N-4-50Definitions/Standards
Attached HouseSection 3.2.2
Carriage HouseSection 3.2.3
Civic BuildingSection 3.2.4
Commercial BlockSection 3.2.5
Detached HouseSection 3.2.6
Flex BuildingSection 3.2.7
Loft BuildingSection 3.2.8
Shopfront11Section 3.2.9
Shopfront HouseSection 3.2.10
Stacked UnitsSection 3.2.11
TowerSection 3.2.12

1 Shopfront buildings are not permitted along Hertel Avenue, between Delaware Avenue and Main Street.

3.2.2 Attached House

3.2.2 Attached House
3.2.2 Attached House
  1. Description

    An attached house is a building on a narrow lot that shares a party wall with a building on an adjoining lot, typically designed as a dwelling.

  2. Frontage Elements

    The following frontage elements are allowed for the attached house building type, subject to the requirements of Section 3.3:

    🚫 Arcade🚫 Forecourt
    ✅ Awning🚫 Plaza
    ✅ Balcony✅ Porch
    ✅ Canopy✅ Stoop
  3. Lot

    Lot Dimensions

    ALot area (min)900 SF
    BLot width (min/max)15’/40’

    Lot Coverage

    CBuilding coverage (max)
    N-1C, N-1S90%
    N-2E, N-2R, N-3E, N-3R70%
    DImpervious coverage (max)
    N-1C, N-1S100%
    N-2E, N-2R, N-3E, N-3R80%
  4. Siting

    Building Setbacks

    AFront yard (min/max)+/- 5’ from established front yard line
    BBuild-to percentage, front facade (min)85%
    CCorner side yard (min/max)
    N-1C, N-1S0’/5’
    N-2E, N-2R, N-3E, N-3R3’/15’
    DInterior side yard (min)0’
    EInterior side yard, end unit (min)
    N-1C, N-1S0’
    N-2E, N-2R, N-3E, N-3R3’
    FRear yard (min)
    N-1C, N-IS0’; 15% of lot depth if rear lot line abuts an N-2R, N-3R, N-4-30, or N-4-50
    N-2E, N-2R15% of lot depth
    N-3E, N-3R20% of lot depth
  5. Height

    Building Height

    ABuilding height (max)
    N-1C, N-1S4 stories, 52’
    N-2E, N-2R, N-3E, N-3R3 stories, 40’ 1
    BBuilding height (min)
    N-1C, N-1S3 stories
    N-2E, N-2R, N-3E, N-3R2 stories

    Supplemental Standards

    1 See Section 3.2.1.G for height limit exceptions which apply along specified sections of Delaware Avenue, Gates Circle, and North Street in the N-2R zone; and along specified sections of Delaware Avenue, Main Street, and Niagara Street in the N-2E zone.

    Story Height

    CFinished ground floor level (min/max)0’/4’
  6. Activation

    Transparency

    AGround floor transparency front facade (min)20%
    BGround floor transparency corner side facade (min)20%
    CUpper floor transparency front and corner side facades (min)20%

    Pedestrian Access

    DMain entrance location (required)Front facade
  7. Specific Standards

    1. A grouping of attached houses may not exceed 120 feet in aggregate width, except in the N-1C and N-1S zones, where there are no such restrictions.
    2. All attached houses in a single grouping of attached houses must maintain the same front yard setback, with a deviation of up to two feet allowed.
    3. Exterior facade materials are restricted on attached houses, as follows:
      1. Reflective wall surface material with a Visible Light Reflectance (VLR) of greater than 15% is prohibited.
      2. Standard, fluted, or split face concrete masonry units (CMUs) above the basement level are prohibited.
      3. Exterior insulating finish systems (EIFS) are prohibited in the N-1C, N-1S, N-2E, and N-3E zones.
      4. Vinyl siding is prohibited in the N-1C, N-1S, N-2E, and N-3E zones.

3.2.3 Carriage House

  1. Description

    A carriage house is a small building, typically designed for a dwelling or small business that may be above a garage at ground level. A carriage house may be either an ancillary building located to the rear of a lot, or a principal building on its own lot, fronting an alley.

  2. Frontage Elements

    The following frontage elements are allowed for the carriage house building type, subject to the requirements of Section 3.3:

    🚫 Arcade🚫 Forecourt
    ✅ Awning🚫 Plaza
    ✅ Balcony✅ Porch
    ✅ Canopy✅ Stoop
  3. Lot

    Lot Dimensions

    ALot area (min)900 SF
    BLot width (min/max)15’/40’

    Lot Coverage

    CBuilding coverage (max)
    N-1C, N-1S90%
    N-2E, N-2R ,N-3E, N-3R70%
    DImpervious coverage (max)
    N-1C, N-1S100%
    N-2E, N-2R, N-3E, N-3R80%
  4. Siting

    Building Setbacks

    AFront yard (min/max)+/- 5’ from established front yard line
    BBuild-to percentage, front facade (min)85%
    CCorner side yard (min/max)
    N-1C, N-1S0’/5’
    N-2E, N-2R, N-3E, N-3R3’/15’
    DInterior side yard (min)0’
    EInterior side yard, end unit (min)
    N-1C, N-1S0’
    N-2E, N-2R, N-3E, N-3R3’
    FRear yard (min)
    N-1C, N-IS0’; 15% of lot depth if rear lot line abuts an N-2R, N-3R, N-4-30, or N-4-50 zone
    N-2E, N-2R15% of lot depth
    N-3E, N-3R20% of lot depth
  5. Height

    Building Height

    ABuilding height (max)
    N-1C, N-1S4 stories, 52’
    N-2E, N-2R, N-3E, N-3R3 stories, 40’ 1
    BBuilding height (min)
    N-1C, N-1S3 stories
    N-2E, N-2R, N-3E, N-3R2 stories

    Supplemental Standards

    1 See Section 3.2.1.G for height limit exceptions which apply along specified sections of Delaware Avenue, Gates Circle, and North Street in the N-2R zone; and along specified sections of Delaware Avenue, Main Street, and Niagara Street in the N-2E zone.

    Story Height

    CFinished ground floor level (min/max)0’/4’
  6. Activation

    Transparency

    AGround floor transparencyfront facade (min) 20%
    BGround floor transparencycorner side facade (min) 20%
    CUpper floor transparencyfront and corner side facades (min) 20%

    Pedestrian Access

    DMain entrance location (required)Front facade
  7. Specific Standards

    1. A grouping of attached houses may not exceed 120 feet in aggregate width, except in the N-1C and N-1S zones, where there are no such restrictions.
    2. All attached houses in a single grouping of attached houses must maintain the same front yard setback, with a deviation of up to two feet allowed.
    3. Exterior facade materials are restricted on attached houses, as follows:
      1. Reflective wall surface material with a Visible Light Reflectance (VLR) of greater than 15% is prohibited.
      2. Standard, fluted, or split face concrete masonry units (CMUs) above the basement level are prohibited.
      3. Exterior insulating finish systems (EIFS) are prohibited in the N-1C, N-1S, N-2E, and N-3E zones.
      4. Vinyl siding is prohibited in the N-1C, N-1S, N-2E, and N-3E zones.

3.2.4 Civic Building

  1. Description A civic building is a building designed to stand apart from its surroundings due to the special nature of its use as a public facility. A civic building is often among the most prominently sited and architecturally significant in a neighborhood.

  2. Frontage Elements The following frontage elements are allowed for the civic building type, subject to the requirements of Section 3.3:

    ✅ Arcade✅ Forecourt
    ✅ Awning✅ Plaza
    ✅ Balcony✅ Porch
    ✅ Canopy✅ Stoop
  3. Lot

    Lot Dimensions

    ALot area (min)N/A
    BLot width (min/max)N/A

    Lot Coverage

    CBuilding coverage (max)
    N-1D, N-1C, N-1S100%
    N-2C, N-2E, N-3C, N-3E90%
    N-2R, N-3R, N-4-3070%
    N-4-5050%
    DImpervious coverage (max)
    N-1D, N-1C, N-1S, N-2C, N-2E, N-3C, N-3E90%
    N-2R, N-3R, N-4-3080%
    N-4-5060%
  4. Siting

    AFront yard (min)N/A 1
    BCorner side yard (min)N/A 1
    CInterior side yard (min)N/A 1
    DRear yard (min)N/A 1

    Supplemental Standards

    1 Yard requirements are determined by the City Planning Board during site plan approval.

  5. Height

    Building Height

    ABuilding height (max)
    N-1D1.75 times the width of the widest adjacent thoroughfare, plus 3.5’ for each 1’ of upper story stepback
    N-1C1.25 times the width of the widest adjacent thoroughfare
    N-1S6 stories, 90’
    N-2C, N-2E, N-2R, N-3C, N-3E, N-3R, N-4-30, N-4-503 stories, 40’ 1

    Supplemental Standards

    1 See Section 3.2.1.G for height limit exceptions which apply along specified sections of Delaware Avenue, Gates Circle, and North Street in the N-2R zone; and along specified sections of Delaware Avenue, Main Street, and Niagara Street in the N-2C and N-2E zones.

    BFinished ground floor level (min/ max)0’/5’
  6. Activation

    Transparency

    Any facade (min)N/A 1

    Pedestrian Access

    Main entrance location (required)Front facade

    Supplemental Standards

    1 Transparency requirements are determined by the City Planning Board during site plan approval.

  7. Specific Standards

    1. A civic building may be erected only by a government agency or nonprofit establishment and only for the following principal uses, if allowed in the zone: assembly, college/university, cultural facility, government offices, lodge or private club, primary/secondary school, bicycle parking station, Metro Rail station, or major or minor utilities and services.
    2. A civic building is subject to major site plan review, per Section 11.3.7. As part of major site plan review, the City Planning Board must evaluate a proposal for a civic building against the following design guidelines:
    3. A civic building should be located and designed to provide a landmark appropriate to its importance and setting, aiding legibility of the wider area.
      1. A civic building should physically define public space and thoroughfares as places of shared use.
      2. A civic building should be designed to encourage public use and activity within and nearby its site.
      3. A civic building should communicate its importance and function through architectural cues and attractive signage.
      4. A civic building should be built with high quality, durable materials.
      5. A civic building should incorporate sustainable building and landscape practices.
      6. A civic building should be noteworthy in itself and in relation to its surroundings, contributing to an attractive setting for users, customers, and the wider public.
      7. A civic building should promote public spaces and access routes that are attractive and accessible for all users.
      8. A civic building should build upon and improve community character by responding to and reinforcing locally distinctive patterns of development, landscape, and culture.
    4. The following exterior facade materials are prohibited on civic buildings:
      1. Exterior insulating finish systems (EIFS).
      2. Standard, fluted, or split face concrete masonry units (CMUs) above the basement level. Glazed or heavily polished CMUs are allowed.
      3. Vinyl siding.
      4. Reflective wall surface material with a Visible Light Reflectance (VLR) of greater than 15%.

3.2.5 Commercial Block

  1. Description A commercial block is a multi-story building designed to facilitate a vertical mix of uses, with pedestrian- friendly ground floor retail or service uses and upper floor residential, hospitality, o r office uses. A commercial block makes up the primary component of a neighborhood main street or downtown main street, therefore being integral to creating a walkable, mixed- use environment.

  2. Frontage Elements The following frontage elements are allowed for the commercial block building type, subject to the requirements of Section 3.3:

    ✅ Arcade✅ Forecourt
    ✅ Awning✅ Plaza 1
    ✅ Balcony🚫 Porch
    ✅ Canopy🚫 Stoop

    1 Plazas are allowed for commercial block buildings only in the N-1D and N-1C zones.

  3. Lot

    Lot Dimensions

    ALot area (min)1,000 SF
    BLot width (min/max)
    N-1D, N-1C15’/none
    N-2C, N-2E15’/120’
    N-3C, N-3E15’/150’

    Lot Coverage

    CBuilding coverage (max)
    N-1D, N-1C100%
    N-2C, N-2E, N-3C, N-3E90%
    DImpervious coverage (max)100%
  4. Siting

    Building Setbacks

    AFront yard (min/max)0’/0’
    BBuild-to percentage, front facade (min)85%
    CCorner side yard (min/max)0’/0’
    DBuild-to percentage, corner side facade (min)85%
    EInterior side yards (min/max total)0’/30’ 1
    FRear yard (min)0’; 15% of lot depth, but need not be greater than 15’, if rear lot line abuts an N-2R, N-3R, N-4-30, or N-4-50 zone

    Supplemental Standards

    1 In an N-3E zone, a maximum total of 45’ may be permitted for interior side yards, only where the City Planning Board expressly permits parking in an interior side yard as part of major site plan review, per Section 8.3.3.A.3.

  5. Height

    ABuilding height (max)
    N-1D1.75 times the width of the widest adjacent thoroughfare 1
    N-1C1.25 times the width of the widest adjacent thoroughfare
    N-2C, N-2E, N-3C, N-3E3 stories, 44’ 2
    BBuilding height (min)
    N-1D4 stories
    N-1C, N-2C, N-2E, N-3C, N-3E2 stories

    Supplemental Standards

    1 Buildings that are taller than 1.75 times the width of the widest adjacent thoroughfare in the N-1D zone must comply with the standards for towers in Section 3.2.12.

    2 See Section 3.2.1.G for height limit exceptions which apply along specified sections of Delaware Avenue, Main Street, and Niagara Street in the N-2C and N-2E zones.

    Story Height

    CFinished ground floor level (min/max)0’/2’
    DGround story height (min)15'
  6. Activation

    Transparency

    AGround floor transparency front facade (min) 70%
    BGround floor transparency corner side facade (min) 40%
    CUpper floor transparency front and corner facades (min) 25%
    DGround floor blank wall width front facade (max) 10’
    EGround floor blank wall width corner side facade (max) 30’
    FGround floor window sill height front and corner facades (min/max) 0.5’/2.5’

    Pedestrian Access

    GMain entrance location (required)Front facade
    HEntrance spacing along front facade (preferred)At least 1 entrance every 30’ 1

    Supplemental Standards

    1 See Section 3.2.1.J for entrance spacing requirements which apply in specified sections of Elmwood Village.

  7. Specific Standards

    1. Vertical articulation is required (e.g., bays, mullions, columns, piers, pilasters, recessed entries, awnings, or other architectural treatments) to visually break up the massing of the ground story of the front and corner side facades into segments no greater than 25 feet in width.
    2. Horizontal articulation is required (e.g., belt courses, cornice lines, entablatures, friezes, awnings or canopies, changes in materials or window patterns, recessed entries, or other architectural treatments) to distinguish the ground story of front and corner side facades from the upper stories.
    3. A main entrance must effectively address the adjacent public realm and be given prominence on the building facade. This may be satisfied through the use of architectural features such as entranceway roofs; entranceway recesses; a chamfered corner; sidelight windows, transom window, or other adjacent windows; additional mouldings with expression lines; or a bay of unique width.
    4. Alterations should not cover, infill, remove, or damage significant, original architectural elements of existing commercial block buildings that are visible from the adjacent public right-of-way. In cases where original architectural elements are in poor condition and cannot be restored, replication of original elements with new elements is encouraged.
    5. Exterior facade materials are restricted on commercial block buildings, as follows:
      1. Exterior insulating finishing systems (EIFS) are prohibited on the ground story of front and corner side facades, and are limited to 20% on upper stories of front and corner side facades.
      2. Standard, fluted, or split face concrete masonry units (CMUs) are prohibited above the basement level on front and corner side facades. Glazed or heavily polished CMUs are allowed.
      3. Vinyl siding is prohibited.
      4. Reflective wall surface material with a Visible Light Reflectance (VLR) of greater than 15% is prohibited.
    6. Vents, air conditioners, and other utility elements, except where such elements are enclosed, camouflaged, screened, obscured, or otherwise not readily apparent to a casual observer, are prohibited as part of a front or corner side facade.
    7. Security devices such as coiling shutters and accordion gates are prohibited on front or corner side facades, except where such devices are at least 50% transparent and located wholly behind a window or door, when viewed from the public right-of-way.

3.2.6 Detached House

  1. Description A detached house is a small-scale, freestanding building, typically set back from the public right-of- way and elevated above the ground level to provide privacy to occupants, and ideally designed to facilitate residential uses.

  2. Frontage Elements The following frontage elements are allowed for the detached house building type, subject to the requirements of Section 3.3:

    🚫 Arcade🚫 Forecourt
    ✅ Awning🚫 Plaza
    ✅ Balcony✅ Porch
    ✅ Canopy✅ Stoop
  3. Lot

    Lot Dimensions

    ALot area (min)
    N-2E, N-2R1,500 SF
    N-3E, N-3R1,800 SF
    N-4-302,400 SF
    N-4-504,000 SF
    BLot width (min/max)
    N-2E, N-2R25’/60’
    N-3E, N-3R, N-4-3030’/75’
    N-4-5050’/None

    Lot Coverage

    CBuilding coverage (max)
    N-2E, N-2R, N-3E, N-3R70%
    N-4-3060%
    N-4-5050%
    DImpervious coverage (max)
    N-2E, N-2R, N-3E, N-3R80%
    N-4-3070%
    N-4-5060%
  4. Siting

    AFront yard (min/max)+/- 5’ from established front yard line
    BBuild-to percentage, front facade (min)65%
    CSide yards (min total)20% of lot width
    DCorner side yard (min)
    N-2E, N-2R, N-3E, N-3R, N-4-303’
    N-4-506’
    EInterior side yard (min)
    N-2E, N-2R, N-3E, N-3R, N-4-303’
    N-4-506’
    FRear yard (min)
    N-2E, N-2R15% of lot depth
    N-3E, N-3R20% of lot depth
    N-4-30, N-4-5025% of lot depth
  5. Height

    Building Height

    ABuilding height (max)3 stories, 40’ 1

    Story Height

    BFinished ground floor level (min/max)0'/4'

    Supplemental Standards

    1 See Section 3.2.1.G for height limit exceptions which apply along specified sections of Delaware Avenue, Gates Circle, and North Street in the N-2R zone; and along specified sections of Delaware Avenue, Main Street, and Niagara Street in the N-2E zone.

  6. Activation

    Transparency

    AGround floor transparencyfront facade (min) 20%
    BGround floor transparencycorner side facade (min) 20%
    CUpper floor transparencyfront and corner side facades (min) 20%

    Pedestrian Access

    DMain entrance location (required)Front, interior side, or corner side facade
  7. Specific Standards

    1. The following exterior facade materials are prohibited on detached houses:
      1. Reflective wall surface material with a Visible Light Reflectance (VLR) of greater than 15%.

3.2.7 Flex Building

  1. Description A flex building is a single-story, typically large-footprint building, often naturally lit with monitor or sawtooth roofs. A flex building is ideally designed to facilitate industrial, office, and retail uses.

  2. Frontage Elements The following frontage elements are allowed for the flex building type, subject to the requirements of Section 3.3:

    🚫 Arcade✅ Forecourt
    ✅ Awning✅ Plaza
    🚫 Balcony🚫 Porch
    ✅ Canopy🚫 Stoop
  3. Lot

    Lot Dimesions

    ALot area (min)5,000 SF
    BLot width (min)50’

    Lot Coverage

    CBuilding coverage (max)100%
    DImpervious coverage (max)100%
  4. Siting

    Building Setbacks

    AFront yard (min/max)0’/5’
    BBuild-to percentage, front facade (min)85%
    CCorner side yard (min/max)0’/5’
    DBuild-to percentage, corner side facade (min)65%
    EInterior side yard (min)0’
    FRear yard (min)0’
  5. Height

    Building Height

    ABuilding height1 story

    Story Height

    BFinished ground floor level (min/max)0’/2’
    CGround story height (min)18'
  6. Activation

    Transparency

    AGround floor transparency, front and corner side facades (min)40%
    BGround floor blank wall width (max)30’ front facade; 50’ corner side facade

    Pedestrian Access

    CMain entrance location (required)Front facade
  7. Specific Standards

    1. Windows and other openings or reflective surfaces should be placed so that during the day, natural light may provide effective daylighting to at least 60% of regularly occupied interior spaces. Spaces not used for critical visual tasks, such as copy rooms, storage areas, mechanical plant rooms, laundry rooms, and other low occupancy support areas, are excluded from this recommendation.
    2. Exterior facade materials are prohibited on flex buildings, as follows:
      1. Vinyl siding.
      2. Reflective wall surface material with a Visible Light Reflectance (VLR) of greater than 15%.

3.2.8 Lost Building

  1. Description A loft building is a multi-story, typically large-footprint building, often naturally lit with tall ceilings, expansive windows, and light wells. A loft building is ideally designed to facilitate a vertical mix of uses, including industrial, office, retail, and residential.

  2. Frontage Elements The following frontage elements are allowed for the loft building type, subject to the requirements of Section 3.3:

    🚫 Arcade✅ Forecourt
    ✅ Awning✅ Plaza
    ✅ Balcony🚫 Porch
    ✅ Canopy🚫 Stoop
  3. Lot

    Lot Dimensions

    ALot area (min)5,000 SF
    BLot width (min)50’

    Lot Coverage

    CBuilding coverage (max)100%
    DImpervious coverage (max)100%
  4. Siting

    Building Setbacks

    AFront yard (min/max)0’/5’
    BBuild-to percentage, front facade (min)85%
    CCorner side yard (min/max)0’/5’
    DBuild-to percentage, corner side facade (min)65%
    EInterior side yard (min)0’
    FRear yard (min)0’
  5. Height

    Building Height

    ABuilding height (max)6 stories, 90’
    BBuilding height (min)2 stories

    Story Height

    CFinished ground floor level (min/max)0’/4’
    DGround story height (min)13'
    EUpper story height (min)13'
  6. Activation

    Transparency

    AGround floor transparency, front and corner side facades (min)40%
    BUpper floor transparency, front and corner side facades (min)40%
    CGround floor blank wall width (max)30’ front facade; 50’ corner side facade

    Pedestrian Access

    DMain entrance location (required)Front facade
  7. Specific Standards

    1. Windows and other openings or reflective surfaces should be placed so that during the day, natural light may provide effective daylighting to at least 60% of regularly occupied interior spaces. Spaces not used for critical visual tasks, such as copy rooms, storage areas, mechanical plant rooms, laundry rooms, and other low occupancy support areas, are excluded from this recommendation.
    2. Exterior facade materials are prohibited on loft buildings, as follows:
      1. Vinyl siding.
      2. Reflective wall surface material with a Visible Light Reflectance (VLR) of greater than 15%.

3.2.9 Shopfront

  1. Description A shopfront is a single-story building designed to facilitate pedestrian-friendly ground floor retail or service uses.

  2. Frontage Elements The following frontage elements are allowed for the shopfront building type, subject to the requirements of Section 3.3:

    🚫 Arcade✅ Forecourt
    ✅ Awning🚫 Plaza
    🚫 Balcony🚫 Porch
    ✅ Canopy🚫 Stoop
  3. Lot

    Lot Dimensions

    ALot area (min)1,000 SF
    BLot width (min/max)15’/150’

    Lot Coverage

    CBuilding coverage (max)90%
    DImpervious coverage (max)100%
  4. Siting

    Building Setbacks

    AFront yard (min/max)0’/0’
    BBuild-to percentage, front facade (min)85%
    CCorner side yard (min/max)0’/0’
    DBuild-to percentage, corner side facade (min)85%
    EInterior side yards (min/max total)0’/30’ 1
    FRear yard (min)0’; 15% of lot depth, but need not be greater than 15’, if rear lot line abuts an N-2R, N-3R, N-4-30, or N-4-50 zone

    Supplemental Standards

    1 In an N-3E zone, a maximum total of 45’ may be permitted for interior side yards, only where the City Planning Board expressly permits parking in an interior side yard as part of major site plan review, per Section 8.3.3.A.3.

  5. Height

    Building Height

    ABuilding height1 story

    Story Height

    BFinished ground floor level (min/max)0’/2’
    CGround story height (min)18'
  6. Activation

    Transparency

    AGround floor transparency front facade (min) 70%
    BGround floor transparency corner side facade (min) 40%
    CGround floor blank wall width front facade (max) 10’
    DGround floor blank wall width corner side facade (max) 30’
    EGround floor window sill height front and corner side facades (min/max) 0.5’/2.5’

    Pedestrian Access

    FMain entrance location (required)Front facade
    GEntrance spacing along front facade (preferred)At least 1 entrance every 30’ 1

    Supplemental Standards

    1 See Section 3.2.1.J for entrance spacing requirements which apply in specified sections of Elmwood Village.

  7. Specific Standards

    1. Vertical articulation is required (e.g. bays, mullions, columns, piers, pilasters, recessed entries, awnings, or other architectural treatments) to visually break up the massing of the front and corner side facades into segments no greater than 25 feet in width.
    2. Alterations should not cover, infill, remove, or damage significant, original architectural elements of existing shopfront buildings that are visible from the adjacent public right-of-way. In cases where original architectural elements are in poor condition and cannot be restored, replication of original elements with new elements is encouraged.
    3. A main entrance must effectively address the adjacent public realm and be given prominence on the building facade. This may be satisfied through the use of architectural features such as entranceway roofs; entranceway recesses; a chamfered corner; sidelight windows, transom window, or other adjacent windows; additional mouldings with expression lines; or a bay of unique width.
    4. Exterior facade materials are restricted on shopfront buildings, as follows:
      1. Exterior insulating finishing systems (EIFS) are prohibited on front and corner side facades.
      2. Standard, fluted, or split face concrete masonry units (CMUs) are prohibited above the basement level on front and corner side facades. Glazed or heavily polished CMUs are allowed.
      3. Vinyl siding is prohibited.
      4. Reflective wall surface material with a Visible Light Reflectance (VLR) of greater than 15% is prohibited.
    5. Vents, air conditioners, and other utility elements, except where such elements are enclosed, camouflaged, screened, obscured, or otherwise not readily apparent to a casual observer, are prohibited as part of a front or corner side facade.
    6. Security devices such as coiling shutters and accordion gates are prohibited on front or corner side facades, except where such devices are at least 50% transparent and located wholly behind a window or door, when viewed from the public right-of-way.

3.2.10 Shopfront House

  1. Description A shopfront house is a detached house or attached house with an attached shopfront. A building type which is unique to Buffalo, a shopfront house is usually the result of, and key facilitator for, the evolution of a residential environment to a mixed-use environment.

  2. Frontage Elements The following frontages are allowed for the shopfront house building type, subject to the requirements of Section 3.3:

    🚫 Arcade🚫 Forecourt
    ✅ Awning🚫 Plaza
    ✅ Balcony🚫 Porch
    ✅ Canopy✅ Stoop
  3. Lot

    Lot Dimensions

    ALot area (min)
    N-2C, N-2E1,500 SF
    N-3C, N-3E1,800 SF
    BLot width (min/max)
    N-2C, N-2E25’/60’
    N-3C, N-3E30’/75’

    Lot Coverage

    CBuilding coverage (max)90%
    DImpervious coverage (max)100%
  4. Siting

    Building Setbacks

    AFront yard (min/max)0’/0’
    BBuild-to percentage, front facade (min)85%
    CCorner side yard (min/max)
    Shopfront portion0’/0’
    House portion0’/15’
    DInterior side yard (min/max)0’/30’
    ERear yard (min)15% of lot depth, but need not be greater than 15’
  5. Height

    Building Height

    ABuilding height (max)3 stories, 44’ 1

    Story Height

    BFinished ground floor level (min/max)0’/2’ for shopfront portion, 1.5’/4’ for house portion
    CGround story height (min)15’ for shopfront portion

    Supplemental Standards

    1 See Section 3.2.1.G for height limit exceptions which apply along specified sections of Delaware Avenue, Main Street, and Niagara Street in the N-2C and N-2E zones.

  6. Activation

    Transparency

    AGround floor transparency, front facade (min)70%
    BGround floor transparency, corner side facade, shopfront portion (min)40%
    CGround floor transparency, corner side facade, house portion (min)20%
    DUpper floor transparency, front and corner side facades (min)20%
    EGround floor window sill height, front and corner side facades, shopfront portion (min/max)0.5’/2.5’

    Pedestrian Access

    FMain entrance location, shopfront portion (required)Front facade
    GMain entrance location, house portion (required)Front, corner side, or interior side facade
    Entrance spacing along front facade commercial space (preferred)At least 1 entrance every 30’ 1

    Supplemental Standards

    1 See Section 3.2.1.J for entrance spacing requirements which apply in specified sections of Elmwood Village.

  7. Specific Standards

    1. Vertical articulation is required (e.g. bays, mullions, columns, piers, pilasters, recessed entries, awnings, or other architectural treatments) to visually break up the massing of the ground story of front and corner side facades of the shopfront portion into segments no greater than 25 feet in width.
    2. A main entrance must effectively address the adjacent public realm and be given prominence on the building facade. This may be satisfied through the use of architectural features such as entranceway roofs; entranceway recesses; a chamfered corner; sidelight windows, transom window, or other adjacent windows; additional mouldings with expression lines; or a bay of unique width.
    3. Alterations should not cover, infill, remove, or damage significant, original architectural elements of existing shopfront buildings that are visible from the adjacent public right-of-way. In cases where original architectural elements are in poor condition and cannot be restored, replication of original elements with new elements is encouraged.
    4. Exterior facade materials are restricted on shopfront houses, as follows:
      1. Exterior insulating finishing systems (EIFS) are prohibited on the front and corner side facades.
      2. Standard, fluted, or split face concrete masonry units (CMUs) are prohibited above the basement level on front and corner side facades. Glazed or heavily polished CMUs are allowed.
      3. Vinyl siding is prohibited on the shopfront section of the building.
      4. Reflective wall surface material with a Visible Light Reflectance (VLR) of greater than 15% is prohibited.
    5. Security devices such as coiling shutters and accordion gates are prohibited on front or corner side facades, except where such devices are at least 50% transparent and located wholly behind a window or door, when viewed from the public right-of-way.

3.2.11 Stacked Units

  1. Description A stacked unit building is a general multi-story building that can facilitate a variety of uses, typically connected by one or more shared entries.

  2. Frontage Elements The following frontage elements are allowed for the stacked units building type, subject to the requirements of Section 3.3:

    🚫 Arcade✅ Forecourt
    ✅ Awning✅ Plaza
    ✅ Balcony✅ Porch
    ✅ Canopy✅ Stoop
  3. Lot

    Lot Dimensions

    ALot area (min)1,800 SF
    BLot width (min/max)
    N-1D, N-1C30’/none
    N-2E30’/120’
    N-3E30’/150’
    N-2R25’/60’ interior lot, 25’/100’ corner lot
    N-3R30’/75’ interior lot, 30’/100’ corner lot

    Lot Coverage

    CBuilding coverage (max)
    N-1D, N-1C100%
    N-2E, N-2R, N-3E, N-3R70%
    DImpervious coverage (max)
    N-1D, N-1C100%
    N-2E, N-2R, N-3E, N-3R80%
  4. Siting

    Building Setbacks

    AFront yard (min/max)
    N-1D, N-1C0’/0’
    N-2E, N-2R, N-3E, N-3R+/- 5’ from established front yard line
    BBuild-to percentage, front facade (min)85%
    CSide yards (min total)
    N-1D, N-1C , N-2E, N-3EN/A
    N-2R, N-3R20% of lot width
    CCorner side yard (min/max)
    N-1D, N-1C0’/0’
    N-2E, N-3E0’/15’
    N-2R, N-3R3’/15’
    DInterior side yard (min/max)
    N-1D, N-1C0’/30’
    N-2E, N-2R, N-3E, N-3R3’/30’
    ERear yard (min)
    N-1D, N-1C0’; 15% of lot depth, but need not be greater than 15’, if rear lot line abuts an N-2R, N-3R, N-4-30, or N-4-50 zone
    N-2E, N-2R15% of lot depth
    N-3E, N-3R20% of lot depth
  5. Height

    Building Height

    ABuilding height (max)
    N-1D1.75 times the width of the widest adjacent thoroughfare 1
    N-1C1.25 times the width of the widest adjacent thoroughfare
    N-2E, N-3E3 stories, 44’ 2
    N-2R, N-3R3 stories, 40’ 2
    BBuilding height (min)
    N-1D4 stories
    N-1C3 stories
    N-2E, N-2R, N-3E, N-3R2 stories

    Supplemental Standards

    1 Buildings taller than 1.75 times the width of the widest adjacent thoroughfare in the N-1D zone must comply with the standards for towers in Section 3.2.12.

    2 See Section 3.2.1.G for height limit exceptions which apply along specified sections of Delaware Avenue, Gates Circle, and North Street in the N-2R zone; and along specified sections of Delaware Avenue, Main Street, and Niagara Street in the N-2E zone.

    Story Height

    CFinished ground floor level (min/max)0’/4’
    DGround story height (min)
    N-1D, N-1C13’
    N-2E, N-2R, N-3E, N-3R10’
  6. Activation

    Transparency

    AGround floor transparency front facade (min)30% 1
    BGround floor transparency corner side facade (min)30%
    CUpper floor transparency front and corner side facades (min)25%
    DGround floor blank wall width front facade (max)10’
    EGround floor blank wall area corner side facade (max)30’

    Supplemental Standards

    1 The minimum transparency for the front facade of ground- floor commercial space is 50%, except where such commercial space is accessed only from an interior lobby and is intended to primarily serve the tenants of the building.

    Pedestrian Access

    FMain entrance location (required)
    N-1D, N-1C, N-2E, N-3EFront facade
    N-2R, N-3RFront or corner side facade
    Entrance spacing along front facade commercial space (preferred)At least 1 entrance every 30’1

    Supplemental Standards

    1 See Section 3.2.1.J for entrance spacing requirements which apply in specified sections of Elmwood Village.

  7. Specific Standards

    1. Exterior facade materials are restricted on stacked unit buildings, as follows:
      1. Exterior insulating finishing systems (EIFS) are prohibited on the ground story of front and corner side facades, and are limited to 20% on upper stories of front and corner side facades.
      2. Standard, fluted, or split face concrete masonry units (CMUs) above the basement level are prohibited.
      3. Vinyl siding is prohibited.
      4. Reflective wall surface material with a Visible Light Reflectance (VLR) of greater than 15% is prohibited.
    2. Vents, air conditioners, and other utility elements, except where such elements are enclosed, camouflaged, screened, obscured, or otherwise not readily apparent to a casual observer, are prohibited as part of a front or corner side facade.
    3. Security devices such as coiling shutters and accordion gates are prohibited on front or corner side facades, except where such devices are at least 50% transparent and located wholly behind a window or door, when viewed from the public right-of-way.

3.2.12 Tower

  1. Description A tower is a stacked unit or commercial block building of substantial height, typically designed with upper- story stepbacks to ensure adequate light and air at the sidewalk level. A tower contributes to the skyline of the downtown and reinforces high density at the region’s public transit hub.

  2. Frontage Elements The following frontage elements are allowed for the tower building type, subject to the requirements of Section 3.3:

    ✅ Arcade✅ Forecourt
    ✅ Awning✅ Plaza
    ✅ Balcony🚫 Porch
    ✅ Canopy🚫 Stoop
  3. Lot

    Lot Dimensions

    ALot area (min)N/A
    BLot width (min)N/A

    Lot Coverage

    CBuilding coverage (max)100%
    DImpervious coverage (max)100%
  4. Siting

    Builidng Setbacks

    AFront yard (min/max)0’/0’
    BBuild-to percentage, front facade (min)85%
    CCorner side yard (min/max)0’/0’
    DBuild-to percentage, corner side facade (min)85%
    EInterior side yard (min/max)0’/30’
    FRear yard (min)0’; 15% of lot depth, but need not be greater than 15’, if rear lot line abuts an N-2R, N-3R, N-4-30, or N-4-50 zone
  5. Height

    Building Height

    ABuilding height (max)
    N-1D 1.75 times the width of the widest adjacent thoroughfareplus 3.5’ for each 1’ of upper-story stepback

    Story Height

    BFinished ground floor level (min/max)0’/2’
    CGround story height (min)18'
  6. Activation

    Transparency

    AGround floor transparency front facade (min)70%
    BGround floor transparency corner side facade (min)40%
    CUpper floor transparency front and corner side facades (min)25%
    DGround floor blank wall width front facade (max)10’
    EGround floor blank wall width corner side facade (max)30’
    FGround floor window sill height front and corner side facades (min/max)0.5’/2.5’

    Pedestrian Access

    GMain entrance location (required)Front facade
    HEntrance spacing along front and corner side facades (preferred)At least 1 entrance every 30’
  7. Specific Standards

    1. Any building that is taller than 1.75 times the width of the widest adjacent thoroughfare in the N-1D zone must comply with the form standards for towers.
    2. A tower may not cast new shadows upon any D-OG, D-OS, or D-ON zone from 12 noon to 2 pm on September 21.
    3. Tower tops should incorporate distinctive design and lighting characteristics to give character to the Buffalo skyline. Examples include tops that exhibit a taper, pinnacle, or articulated canopy.
    4. A main entrance must effectively address the adjacent public realm and be given prominence on the building facade. This may be satisfied through the use of architectural features such as entranceway roofs; entranceway recesses; a chamfered corner; sidelight windows, transom window, or other adjacent windows; additional mouldings with expression lines; or a bay of unique width.
    5. Towers that abut two parallel thoroughfares are encouraged to provide a continuous, weather protected through-block passage, between such thoroughfares, that is accessible to the general public during regular business hours.
    6. Exterior facade materials are restricted on Towers, as follows:
      1. Exterior insulation and finishing systems (EIFS) are prohibited on any portion of any facade visible from a public right-of-way
      2. Standard, fluted, or split face concrete masonry units (CMUs) are prohibited on any portion of any facade visible from a public right-of-way. Glazed or heavily polished CMUs are allowed.
      3. Vinyl siding is prohibited
      4. Reflective wall surface material with a Visible Light Reflectance (VLR) of greater than 15% is prohibited.
    7. Vents, air conditioners, and other utility elements, except where such elements are enclosed, camouflaged, screened, obscured, or otherwise not readily apparent to a casual observer, are prohibited where visible from a public right-of-way.
    8. Security devices such as coiling shutters and accordion gates are prohibited on front or corner side facades, except where such devices are at least 50% transparent and located wholly behind a window or door, when viewed from the public right-of-way.