Suburban Retrofits and Form-based Codes as Tactics for Strategic Densification: Evaluating Viability and Potential in the GTA Fringe
Suburban retrofits and form-based codes are innovative planning and regulatory tools that may provide a desirable alternative to conventional suburban development practices which often produce sprawling, low-density landscapes. This research paper evaluates the viability of retrofitting tactics and form-based codes in select sites within three Greater Toronto Area municipalities and explores present barriers to implementing these tools through a collective case study. Through evaluation, it was found that retrofits and form-based codes may prove suitable for application within the selected sites, though a lack of experience with these tools by municipal staff and general resistance to intensification by residents are two major barriers preventing their implementation. Based on the barriers identified, recommendations relevant to all municipalities are outlined for incorporating retrofits and form-based codes.