Place types represent prototypical places and include both “net” parcel area and “gross” area occupied by the right-of-way. They are created by combining a weighted mix of building and/or block types — just like building and block types are weighted mixes of components, plus right-of-way (ROW) characteristics (roadway and sidewalks). 

Within UF, they are created the same way that building types are created. In addition to blending one or more building/block types to define the net characteristics of a place type, you must also define the ROW characteristics. Place types are typically painted at an aggregate scale (e.g., Census blocks). They represent “gross” densities by default (measured over the total area, including ROW).

Creating new components and types. When creating new components and/or types, you have two options: create one from scratch or make a copy of an existing one (SAVE AS). Creating a copy can be useful for quickly creating a new type because it gives you a baseline.

Editing existing components and types. You can only edit types that have not been used to paint. Components and types that have been used to create types that have been painted with cannot be edited. You also cannot paint with types that exist in your project’s base canvas (depiction of existing land use). Once either a component or type is in use, you must SAVE AS (create a copy) to “edit” it. Editing a component that has been used to create a building or block type will have ripple effects, changing the attributes of any associated types. There are three ways to edit a type: modify the proportions (weights) of its constituent parts (components or types), edit the attributes of its constituent parts directly, or a combination of these methods. Pay special attention when editing a component or type that has been used to build multiple types — this will affect the attributes of all its associated types.

Figure 1. Toolbar in upper right corner of component and types editor with SAVE, SAVE AS, RESET, and DELETE options

Add a new place type

To add a new place type, Select the Place Types tab. Then Select the button "Add New".

Place type editor

You will now see the place type editor. All text boxes will be blank and value boxes will be zero. Unlike components, for which you must fill out information for every card, types are focused on blending, which automatically calculates derivative values for the land use type attribute cards. This walkthrough will go through each card in the place type editor to help familiarize you with the process. We'll be using the existing Village Mixed Use Place type as our example.

Place type name and key details

  1. Place type name. First, give your place type a name.
  2. Land Use Category. Assign the place type to one of UF’s ten major Land Use Categories. For example, a neighborhood of single-family homes would be Residential, a shopping center would be Commercial, and apartments above ground floor retail would be Mixed Use.
  3. Land Development Category. These represent distinct forms of land use and development pattern, ranging from dense, walkable mixed use urban areas that are well served by transit to lower-intensity, less walkable places where land uses are segregated and most trips are made in an automobile. Selecting a Land Development Category also selects a street intersection density per square mile, which is a proxy indicator of walkability. Categories are:
  • Urban - the most intense and mixed category, with a dense, walkable development pattern. Typically found within and adjacent to moderate and high density city centers. Nearly all development that would take place here would be considered infill or redevelopment. Greater than 150 street intersections per square mile.
  • Compact - less intense than urban, but characterized by a walkable built environment and a mix of retail, commercial, residential, and civic uses. Residential types are mixed, including multifamily apartments, townhomes, and small and medium lot single-family homes. Streets are well connected and walkable; destinations such as schools, shopping, and entertainment can typically be reached via a walk, bike, transit, or short auto trip. Greater than 150 street intersections per square mile.
  • Suburban - lower density than compact and characterized by segregated land uses and auto-oriented development. Development pattern does not facilitate walking, biking, or transit service. Most trips are made by car. Although suburban areas may have multifamily and attached single-family units, it is dominated by detached medium and large lot single-family homes. Less than 150 street intersections per square mile.
  • Rural - low density, sparsely developed.Travel requires a vehicle and there is little to no transit service.
  • Undeveloped - no human settlements and minimal to no road or other infrastructure.

5. Description (optional). Provide a brief description.

Place type summary

Nothing is editable in the summary — it is the product of the information you will fill out in the other cards. As you enter values, the summary numbers will be calculated to give you a high-level overview.

  • Average floor area ratio (FAR). The average ratio of total building floor area to total site area for all structures in the place type.
  • Residential density. Number of dwelling units per acre for both net and gross area.
  • Population density. Number of residents per acre for both net and gross area.
  • Employment density. Number of employees per acre for both net and gross area.
  • Parking ratio (per 1000 ft2). Number of parking spaces per 1000 square feet.

Building types by land area

Place types are made here. Unlike components, you do not have to fill out the rest of the cards in the place types editor. The values on these cards are calculated based on the area-weighted blend of building and/or block types that you specify in the Building types by land area card. Let’s step through how this works.

  1. To start blending, click the  ADD BUILDING button. This opens a list of building and block types in your project library that you can either scroll through or filter with the search box. 
  2. Select the building or block types you want.
  3. This will add the building/block type to the card as a row. The first type is automatically set to 100% of land area for the new place type.
  4. Repeat steps one and two for each building/block type you want to include in the blend.
  5. Set the proportion each building/block type should make up of the place type, making sure that the sum of of the values is 100% (if they do not sum to exactly 100%, the type will not be usable).
  6. As you modify the weights, note how the values in the other cards change in response. Tweak the weights until the attributes displayed in the cards and the summary are what you want.
  7. Click SAVE.

You now have a place type to use for painting your scenarios.

If you wish to remove a constituent building/block type, Select the delete icon

Area Coverage

A summary of hardscape vs. non-hardscape land coverage for the given place type.

  • Hardscape (building, parking, and other). The proportion and area (sqft) that hardscape comprises.
  • Non-hardscape, unirrigated. The proportion and area (sqft) that unirrigated non-hardscape comprises.
  • Non-hardscape, irrigated. The proportion and area (sqft) that irrigated non-hardscape comprises.

Built Form

Summary statistics for key built form elements of constituent building types within the place type.

  • Average number of floors of constituent building and block types.
  • Building area per acre. Area (sqft) for all floors of buildings present in the place type as a per acre density.
  • Residential area. Percent of building area that is residential use.
  • Non-residential area. Percent of building area that is non-residential use.
  • Building coverage. Percent of entire land area that is covered by structures.

Residential floor area and dwelling units

 On this card, you can view the breakdown of the net residential floor area by type in terms of the unit density (number of dwelling units per acre) and the average square feet per dwelling unit.

Non-residential floor area

On this card, you can view the breakdown the of net commercial floor area by sector and subsector in terms of employment density (number of employees per acre) and as a percentage of the total net non-residential floor area. 

Using an place type to create a new one

Using an existing place type to create a new place type is like starting from scratch, with two important differences: 

  1. You start with at least one already specified constituent building/block type. To create a new one, all you have to do is edit the weights and add and/or remove building/block types; and
  2. instead of using the SAVE button, you will use SAVE AS!

Therefore, you can use the guide to “Creating a place type from scratch” to create a place type from an existing one (see section above).

Editing an existing place type

Place types that have been used to paint cannot be edited. Once a type is in use, you must SAVE AS (create a copy) to “edit” it.

Did this answer your question?