A VIEW FROM ABOVE
data only available for study area
It is clear from the x-ray of existing buildings where the core of Burlington is located, despite there being several blocks that lack definition, where the tight fabric of buildings has been replaced by parking, vacant lots, or suburban building typologies. Outside of the core, the city has a fine grained and relatively intact network of buildings that define neighborhood streets, which on the ground translates into a pedestrian experience that is interesting and has a feeling of enclosure. The waterfront in particular has a lack of buildings to enclose and activate the public space.
Despite having a great many buildings, Burlington, like many cities, has lost density and a significant amount of its urban fabric over the past 50 years. Though the city may appear build out because of the lack of large undeveloped parcels, there are numerous small and medium size parcels that are underutilized. This includes vacant lots, parking lots, buildings with suburban setbacks, and single story buildings. All of these conditions lead to unmet potential and an under-representation, in particular, of residential uses within the downtown. Within the Downtown, there are fewer than 2,500 residential units in existence today. There is currently the potential in the downtown for an additional 3 to 4 million square feet of mixed-use development. In addition, there is currently a 5:1 jobs to housing ratio, where a more healthy balance would be closer to 3:1.
Downtown & Waterfront Master Plan for Burlington, Vermont. Adopted June 10, 2013.