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10-day Taft Corners design workshop launches Saturday

Taft Corners form based code project

The Town of Williston welcomes all community members to participate in a 10-day workshop to create a vision for the future of Taft Corners. 

The “My Taft Corners” series begins Saturday and goes through May 3. Saturday’s half-day design workshop will be conducted online via Zoom starting at 9 a.m. Visit www.mytaftcorners.com for information about how to participate. 

The My Taft Corners project (#mytaftcorners) is focused on developing a form-based code to replace the existing development regulations in Taft Corners. Form-based codes emphasize regulating building and street design, versus the current traditional development regulations that focus on regulating the uses inside buildings. 

Saturday’s design workshop will be led by the town’s consultant, Geoffrey Ferrell Associates. Attendees will work in small groups led by consultant team members to digitally collaborate, plan, sketch and share ideas about how to make Taft Corners a place of community, vitality and pride. All community members and ideas are welcome. 

Geoffrey Ferrell Associates will be working continuously through the 10-day period to develop the framework of a form-based code for Taft Corners. This work will be premised on ideas shared at Saturday’s workshop and several community surveys conducted in March and April. The consultant team will offer near-daily updates on project progress via Zoom during the last week of April. For a full schedule of events during the 10-day workshop, visit www.mytaftcorners.com. 

A Zoom meeting at 7 p.m. Monday, May 3 will culminate the series and summarize the consultant team’s work. It will also provide an additional opportunity to review the ideas and concept the consultant team will use to develop a form-based code for Williston. The May 3 meeting may include a review of a draft illustrative plan, regulating plan and standards for a new form-based code. 

The Williston Town Plan has long called for Taft Corners to be “a design-conscious, bike/pedestrian-friendly, mixed-use town center that provides convenience, leisure and social uses for employees and residents in the context of a thriving center.” However, the current development regulations for Taft Corners have not guided development in a manner that fulfills this vision and changes are needed, Williston Town Planner Matt Boulanger said. 

“I’m really excited to be a part of this critical project for Williston’s future,” said Boulanger. “I’ve had a front-row seat to observe changes to Taft Corners over the last dozen years. I’m confident that with the community conversation we’re about to embark upon, and the expertise of our consultant team, we’ll develop regulations that can truly shape Taft Corners into the vibrant, walkable place the town wants it to become.” 

Geoffrey Ferrell Associates will present a draft form-based code to the town for public review in late summer. Additional opportunities for public feedback will be provided at that time.