It’s not every day that you think about the City Planning Department, and most people don’t even know what it is. According to Wikipedia, “A Planning and Zoning Commission is a local elected or appointed government board charged with recommending to the local town or city council the boundaries of the various original zoning district and appropriate regulations to be enforced therein and any proposed amendments thereto and shall collect data and keep itself informed as to the best practices generally in effect in the matter city planning and zoning to the end that it may be qualified to act on measures affecting the present and future movement of traffic, the segregation of residential and business districts and the convenience and safety of persons and property in any way dependent on city planning and zoning.” (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Planning_and_zoning_commission)
I bring this topic up because as I’m exploring and becoming familiar with cities I’ve been noticing a lot of similar businesses located within a few feet of each other. When an area becomes popular, more people want to live in that area and more homes are sold. Businesses also want to take advantage of the opportunity to provide their product or service to the people living in these communities. When vacant storefronts become occupied restaurants, bakeries, shops and service providers, this is called the “revitalization” of a community.
I love seeing small communities revitalized! I’ve seen cities that were once solid middle-class cities lose their thriving communities to economic downturn only to be revitalized by a new job or educational opportunities. The only problem that I’m seeing is the lack of city planning. For an example, I’ve seen towns where their downtown area is about 8 blocks long and 2 blocks deep with more than 5 pizza restaurants! Can you imagine walking around a city’s downtown area and there were 12 divorce attorney offices all lined up, door to door on two blocks? Or better yet, how about a downtown where every other storefront was a real estate office, next to a title company, next to a lawyer’s office, and next to a sports bar? It might sound harsh but I’ve seen it!
I understand that it’s beneficial for a city to have businesses utilize their storefronts so that they’re not vacant but I think thereshould be some kind of regulation to minimize flooding your downtown area with the same kind of business or service. Not only will this help provide a diverse business atmosphere that people can enjoy but it will also help the business be successful. At the end of the day community matters to homebuyers.
Written By: Shena Omotola, Dream Home Specialist & Broker Owner of Skyward Realty – Skyward Realty services Chicago, Suburbs, and Northwest Indiana
P.S. Feel free to email me any questions. I’m always here to help. Shena@SkywardRealty.com