Case Study: Zoning Reform

Earlier this year we published the “Inclusive Design Together: Detroit City of Design Monitoring Report,” which showcases the progress of 62 inclusive design projects across the city, reaching 70,000 people in 2018. You can read it in its entirety here. This report includes real stories that embody the hardworking culture of our community and the values of our initative — diverse experiences, accessible opportunities, and collaborative relationships. While there is still much work to do, our coalition of 52 partners are building momentum and we want to give you insight into some of these important case studies.

One such project is Mixtape. City of Design Partners Smithgroup, Laavu, and the City of Detroit Planning and Development Department partnered to reimagine arcane and cumbersome ordinances and zoning codes. The project explores ways to reduce regulatory red tape, emphasizing small-scale, mixed-use, and incremental redevelopment approaches to help enliven neighborhood commercial corridors and further revitalize a city on the verge of a new chapter of prosperity. Laavu won the Michigan Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects’ Merit Award for its role in the project. Mixtape was featured in the Detroit Design 139 exhibition.

To learn more about Mixtape, visit