Codes & Manuals

coverThe central transect-based planning and regulatory tool supported by CATS and used by numerous urban design firms and municipal planning departments is the open source SmartCode. The SmartCode, a concise template released in 2003 and continually updated, is a model ordinance flexibly written for towns, cities, regions, and private developments. It requires calibration for local conditions. The SmartCode v9 and Manual was published to aid calibrators and planners and is available from New Urban News. SmartCode Version 10, due out in 2022, has a modular structure making it easier for a jurisdiction to assemble the precise code it needs.

The SmartCode differs from some other form-based codes in that its community-scale and block-scale articles are written explicitly for zoning. Zoning reform is essential to allow walkable mixed-use neighborhoods, thereby combatting sprawl, preserving open lands, and reducing energy use and carbon emissions.

Listed below are code files and manuals. Supplementary Modules for any transect-based planning or coding effort are available here. Titles listed without downloads are still in production.

SmartCode Files

SmartCode Version 9.2 Acrobat PDF (4.5 MB)

SmartCode Version 9.2 InDesign CS3 (20 MB)

SmartCode Version 9.2 InDesign INX (542 KB)

Support Files for InDesign (14 MB)

Cover Files Only (17 MB)

SmartCode Version 9.2 in Spanish (7 MB)

SmartCode Version 9.2 in Chinese (13 MB)

SmartCode Version 9.2 in Polish (7 MB)

The following open source files were commissioned by CATS for municipalities who do not own Adobe InDesign. Please be aware that codes created from these files will not have all the capabilities of the InDesign files, but they should make the editable SmartCode accessible to many more planning departments than previously.

Excel File of SmartCode V9.2 Tables, Roger Eastman
download files

Excel File of 2008 Module Tables, Roger Eastman
download files

Word File of SmartCode v9.2 text
an editable Word file of Articles 1-5 and Article 7.
download file

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Other Transect-based Codes

Neighborhood Conservation Code, prepared by Sandy Sorlien

The NCC is intended primarily for infill plans, i.e., the mapping and zoning of existing urbanism. It was created for communities that are not sufficiently protected by their current zoning, but that do not need the Regional or New Community portions of the SmartCode. The NCC has been streamlined from the CATS in-house Version 9.5 SmartCode, which has a more modular structure than v9.2, and includes the Existing Thoroughfares Module as a Public Standards chapter. It may be customized for any walkable neighborhoods, including downtowns, as well as for areas that have a mix of both walkable and unwalkable patterns.

PDF | InDesign

The Transect Code, Chad Emerson, SmartCode Education Partners

A template for preparing a transect-based code that includes model regulatory provisions for certain code content and a framework for developing customized regulatory content for other code content. Incorporates some aspects of SmartCode v9.2 with less technical but legally-sound language.

Download Word file

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SmartCode Formats
coming soon

SmartCode for Developers, Andrés Duany and Galina Tahchieva
Condensed Article 1, 3, and 5 for private & public/private projects

SmartCode for Infill, Andrés Duany
Condensed Article 1, 4, and 5 for municipalities

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Handbooks and Regulatory Manuals

Public Works Manual, Peter Swift, Daisy Kone, Andrés Duany, Steve Mouzon, Bruce Donnelly

Light Imprint Handbook, Tom Low
available here

How to Design Greenfields, Andrés Duany

Regional Planning Handbook, Andrés Duany

Safe Growth and CPTED, Randall I. Atlas

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