Five Years of Successful Projects and Partnership with the City of Memphis, Tennessee

The success of the partnership between Opticos and the City of Memphis demonstrates what is possible when City and community priorities align around a visionary comprehensive plan. For five years, they have worked together on building local capacity and rehabilitating relationships between the City and the community early in the planning process. This laid a strong foundation for later implementation efforts of planning, coding, and design projects, which are quickly showing what it means for Memphis to “build up, not out” in its third century.

How a Form-Based Code Generated over $500 Million in Downtown Infill Projects and Transformed a Sleepy Downtown

In 2014, Opticos Design worked with the City of Mesa, Arizona to create a Master Plan and Form-Based Code (FBC) that would provide incentives for redevelopment in their downtown core and along a five-mile stretch of Main Street. The Plan and Code focused development around three new transit stations to allow for a network of new walkable, public spaces. Prior to the adoption of the plan and FBC, there had been no private-sector investment in downtown Mesa in over three decades.

A Fresh Start for Founding Culdesac Residents and Businesses

Vertical construction on Culdesac Tempe is now well underway, with several buildings in the main entry plaza almost fully completed and future residents ready to make it their new home in 2022. The country’s first car-free community built from scratch promises a vibrant, walkable community that includes a restaurant, grocery store and coffee shop, amongst other amenities. While it is hard to find these types of retail tenants, especially early on in a mixed use project like this, Culdesac not only made it a priority, but also made a special effort to find small, locally owned businesses to support the local economy and reinforce a unique experience within the Culdesac community for residents and visitors.

Memphis 3.0 Community Anchors: Reinvesting in Local Neighborhoods to Positively Impact Memphians

The Daniel Burnham Award-winning Memphis 3.0 Comprehensive Plan charted a bold new vision for how the City of Memphis, Tennessee would “grow up, not out” as it embarks on its third century. Opticos Design was thrilled to assist the City of Memphis as they lead the innovative 3.0 Comprehensive Plan on behalf of a multidisciplinary team of national and local consultants. It was a pleasure to be invited back to help the city implement the plan through a series of small area planning projects.