The purpose of the Downtown Palm Harbor Master Plan is to provide a framework to preserve and enhance the historic character and architectural heritage of Downtown Palm Harbor. When combined with the implementation of the proposed Downtown Palm Harbor Form Based Code, the result will promote a unique and vibrant core to the coastal Palm Harbor community while expanding live, work and play opportunities that establish a framework for the sustainable redevelopment of downtown Palm Harbor.
In October of 2020, the Board of County Commissioners approved the Downtown Palm Harbor Master Plan. The 2020 Master Plan builds on a series of improvements which began in 1999 with the establishment of The Old Palm Harbor Main Street Program (OPHMS). The OPHMS worked with the County to help create a plan for the Downtown in 2001, and the County adopted the Downtown Historic Palm Harbor Master Plan. Through 2017, the County worked with the community to identify area issues and concerns through a series of focus group meetings and open houses. This process led to several recommendations that have been followed by the completion of a parking study, a retail study, an up-to-date historic survey, an ordinance approving the community’s desire to become a golf cart community, and several other in-depth considerations for the downtown area. This research and analysis is framed in the current version of the Downtown Palm Harbor Master Plan.
The approved 2020 Master Plan describes today’s conditions, the public participation process, and the associated targeted efforts and findings.
Form Based Code
The Downtown Palm Harbor Master Plan will be accompanied by a zoning tool commonly referred to as a Form Based Code (FBC). FBC is often used in neighborhood downtown areas and is an innovative method of managing growth by using physical form (rather than separation of uses) as the organizing principle. Traditional zoning tends to separate where we live from where we work, learn, play and shop. FBC encourages a stronger mix of uses and promotes walkable communities.
An FBC Zoning District and an expanded Activity Center (Comprehensive Plan Future Land Use designation) are being proposed to enhance development in the downtown area. These changes will promote investment in Downtown Palm Harbor, while protecting the unique, historic character of the area.
To view the latest draft of the Form Based Code for downtown Palm Harbor, please contact Pinellas County Housing and Community Development by phone at (727) 464-8200 or by email to request a copy.