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When it comes to urban planning and development, one of the fundamental pillars that shape the landscape of a city is its development code. These codes outline the rules and regulations that govern what can be built where, guiding the growth of communities in an organized and sustainable manner.
One critical aspect of these codes is confirming allowable uses for various zones within a municipality.
Understanding Allowable Uses:
Allowable uses are essentially a list of activities or functions that are permitted in a specific zoning district. These uses are carefully considered to ensure that they align with the intended character of the area and are compatible with neighboring uses. This proactive approach not only helps maintain the harmony of the community but also contributes to the economic vitality and overall well-being of residents.
Importance of Confirming Allowable Uses: You don't want to end up signing a lease for a property that has a use restriction for your specific operations. This could be the difference of a deal or no deal. This is also important to consider during entitlements and zone changes. Choosing the appropriate zoning with the widest allowable uses is typically the best answer.
Southern California Examples:
The importance of confirming allowable uses in a municipality's development code cannot be overstated. It restricts what the city may consider "heavy uses" from certain light industrial zoning and verification of this before development or leasing is a must.
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Let's talk 135 foot truck court Class A industrial standard.
When I refer to a truck court I mean the area of an industrial building that contains the dock high doors, truck maneuvering and sometimes trailer parking.
When industrial/warehouse buildings are marketed you will see a reference to a 135' truck court (hopefully!) - that is the distance from the outer face of the building/dock to the end of the truck court or to the front of trailer parking.
So why is this the market standard? Who decided that? Turns out this 135' number hasn't always been the standard. For years it was 130'. But still, why is there a standard at all?
Well, Architects and Engineers studied the turning radius for the largest truck and trailer combos on the road. This analysis resulted in a depth of 131' being the optimal size to handle the largest legal truck/trailer. But 131 doesn't roll of the tongue, 130 looks crisp and that's what stuck. From there 135 eventually overtook 130 as the standard.
or new construction Class A industrial you will now find that almost all have truck courts at least 135'. The LA market doesn't typically have larger truck courts due to site constraints when compared to IE sites that will now often have 185' truck courts. Wait 185'?
Yep, with a 185' truck court you can now park trailers AND have the optimal maneuvering site. Why not bigger? Why is this difficult?
Industrial development and site planning work around many constraints: auto parking requirements, landscaping % coverage, FAR max, and fire truck drive aisles, just to name a few.
In CA it is typical for the architect to do the site planning and developers rely on them for efficient site design that maximizes all of the factors of a Class A facility. A 135' truck court is one of those factors.
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Welcome to the first blog post for Industrial Socal. Industrial Socal is a site focused on providing expertise on industrial real estate in Southern California and connecting people with the resources they need for their specific project.