Since the adoption of the 1997 Community Plan, Dublin has targeted the U.S. 33 / SR 161 interchange area for office, research and development and clean industrial uses. The 2007 Community Plan update studied employment potential along U.S. 33 and identified the West Innovation District as an area served by the City that would focus on commercial growth. The adopted Community Plan accurately identified major policy direction that reflects a commitment to establish a premier research and employment center within Dublin.
Facilitate the Creation of a Cohesive, Integrated Employment Center
The key to long-term viability of Dublin is maintaining the City as an important employment center. The creation of a well-planned mix of office, research and support uses as a high-quality gateway to the city is very desirable and consistent with the community’s established image. The West Innovation District should include strong entry points into Dublin and should include complementary hotels, retail and a broad range of uses that will support prospective companies. Businesses must also have available development options ranging from campus settings to more urban walkable locations that will make the right fit. The area should include a distinctive identity through the use of landscaping, architecture, signs and other design elements.
Maximize Highly Visible Areas and Land Uses Appropriately
Key frontage sites with significant visibility along U.S. 33 should include prominent uses and architecture that capture the image of the West Innovation District. In general, uses along U.S. 33 should develop with higher densities to provide a critical mass with a prominent sense of identity. In addition, uses with greater visual impact should be integrated throughout the West Innovation District in less prominent locations to ensure an overall mix of employment opportunities and desired visual character.
Provide Convenient Housing Choices and Access to Daily Services
As a major employment center based on research and technology, development must integrate a range of unique housing options close to businesses. Places to live and access daily services should be strategically located within and adjacent to the West Innovation District to provide convenience. Great accessibility to regional greenway networks should be provided to offer a full assortment of amenities within the area for prospective businesses, employees and residents.
Incorporate Attractive Streetscapes and Pedestrian Environments
The West Innovation District is a large employment center and must include an integrated system of pedestrian connections and spaces with unique character. Architecture should be appropriately placed close to the street edge and configured to provide courtyards and spaces, and screen parking. Other amenities such as water features, formal open spaces, landscape focal points, sculpture, courtyards, green malls or broad boulevards should also be encouraged where buildings do not relate to the public street. Future options for transit (bus and/or rail) should be implemented to provide long-term convenience and flexibility. Pedestrian connections should be included between employment, transit locations, service uses, open space systems and housing throughout the West Innovation District.
Preserve and Enhance Natural Features and the Environment
The West Innovation District includes important natural features such as woodlands, tree rows and stream corridors that should be preserved and integrated as valuable amenities. Environmental quality should be emphasized, and a key element of future development should include the integration of regional greenway connectivity and a framework of open space upon which all development is linked. Focus should be placed on the natural context of the area through creative layout, quality landscape design and the maintenance of unobstructed views to natural amenities. The integration of LEED-certified buildings or environmentally friendly design techniques should be highly encouraged as part of a cutting-edge technology center.
Implement High Quality, Flexible Design Standards
Development of the area as a major employment center will depend on the ability to establish standards that achieve architectural and design quality in a manner that is flexible and responsive to the private market. Emphasis should be placed on regulations that allow technology companies to quickly follow business opportunities while instilling a unique visual character.