Glossary of Terms

The terms below relate to sustainable practices and were used in documents and presentations throughout the Parkview Gardens planning process.


Achieve Market Potential

Sizing the market for a product or service is a necessary task for business and marketing planning. Achieving market potential refers to the highest degree of success in satisfying estimated market demand.

Affordable Housing

In the United States, a commonly accepted guideline for housing affordability is a housing cost that does not exceed 30% of a household’s gross income. When the monthly carrying costs of a home exceed 30-35% of household income, the housing is considered unaffordable for that household.

American Community Survey (ACS)

The American Community Survey (ACS) is an ongoing Census survey that provides data every year – giving communities the current information they need to plan investments and services. Information from the survey generates data that helps determine how more than $450 billion in Federal and state funds are distributed each year.

Building Permit

A building permit is a permit required in U-City and most jurisdictions for new construction, or adding onto pre-existing structures, and in some cases for major renovations. New construction must be inspected during construction and after completion to ensure code compliance and failure to obtain a permit can result in significant fines and penalties.

Business Improvement District (BID)

A Business Improvement District (BID) is a defined area within which businesses pay an additional tax in order to fund projects within the district’s boundaries. BIDs provide services such as cleaning streets, providing additional security, making capital improvements, construction of pedestrian and streetscape enhancements, and marketing the area.

Car-Optional Neighborhood

A car-optional neighborhood is comprised of compact housing units in a walkable, mixed-use, transit-supporting community which is close to employment centers. Market studies have shown that an increasing number of Americans wish to live in such neighborhoods.

Central Business District (CBD)

A Central Business District (CBD) is the commercial and often geographic heart of a city, usually typified by a concentration of retail, office and civic buildings. In the United States, this part of the city is commonly referred to as downtown or city center.

Compatible Design

Compatible design standards function to protect the character of older neighborhoods by ensuring that new construction, remodels, and additions are compatible in scale and bulk with existing development.

Comprehensive Plan

A comprehensive plan dictates public policy in terms of housing, land use, transportation, utilities, recreation, etc.. Such plans encompass the entire municipality, a broad range of topics, and cover a long-term time horizon. The authority and power to plan is granted through the Missouri Constitution and specific enabling legislation related to the municipality’s classification. The City of University City is a Third Class Charter City under the Missouri Revised Statues, Chapter 77, Section 77.030.

Code Enforcement

Code enforcement is the act of enforcing a set of rules, principles, or laws and insuring the observance of a system of norms and customs. Examples include a zoning enforcement officer, building inspector, fire marshal, health inspector, animal control officer, police officer, etc..

Diverse Housing Types

Diverse housing types refers to a range of alternative dwellings such as single family detached, apartments, row-houses, high-rise apartments, etc. Planner generally believe that since housing needs normally change over a lifetime, a range of housing types in a municipality contributes to stability and stronger social ties.

Form-Based Code (FBC)

A Form-Based Code (FBC) is a means of regulating development to achieve a specific urban form. Form-based codes create a predictable public realm by controlling physical form primarily, with lesser focus on land use, through municipal regulations.

Generations (Boomers, Millennials, etc.)

People within a delineated population who have experienced the same significant events within a given period of time. Generation in this sense of birth cohort have different values and lifestyles and have been the basis of much social analysis, e.g., Baby Boomers (1946-1964, Generation X (1965-1979) and Millennials (1980-2000). These data may be useful to the business community for marketing as well as product selection and service design

Housing Market Study

A housing market study takes into consideration changes in the economic, demographic, and housing inventory character of a specific housing market thru a set period of time. This study may be useful for builders, mortgagees, and others concerned with local housing conditions and trends.

Mixed-Use Development

A mixed-use development blends a combination of residential, commercial, cultural, institutional, or industrial uses, where those functions are physically and functionally integrated, and that provides pedestrian connections. The term is also used to refer to a specific mixed-use real estate development project.

Occupancy Permit

Based on a U-City ordinance, upon title transfer, the City requires the new owner to obtain an occupancy permit and reserves the right to inspect the premises to insure housing code compliance. This program maintains the health, safety and welfare of citizens, business owners and visitors. It also maintains property values and enhances the quality of life in University City.

Parking Inventory & Study

A study to document, understand and analyze the use and dynamics of parking facilities in a given area in order to support informed decision-making regarding modification and future development.

Parkview Gardens Plan

The Parkview Gardens Neighborhood Sustainable Development Plan builds upon the assets the existing neighborhood to establish Parkview Gardens as the region’s first fully walkable, transit served, and truly car-optional community. The Plan capitalizes on existing and proposed public transit; local, state and federal partnerships and investments; and a broad base of community support to address each facet of sustainability – economic empowerment, environmental stewardship, and the development of social equity.

Plan Commission

The Plan Commission of University City is responsible for preparing the City’s master plan, recommending changes and acting as Zoning Commission. The Commission is comprised of seven members who must have been City residents for at least two years and are qualified by knowledge and experience to act on questions pertaining to the City’s development and the administration of zoning laws.

Plan Stakeholders

Individuals, groups and organizations who share responsibility and accountability for the geographic area or entity which is the subject of the plan.

Planned Unit Development

A Planned Unit Development (PUD) is a type of building development and also a regulatory process. As a building development, it is a designed grouping of both varied and compatible land uses, such as housing, recreation, commercial centers, and industrial parks, all within one contained development or subdivision. A detailed plan for a proposed PUD must be submitted to the Planning Commission for approval.

Public Engagement

Public engagement is a term that has been recently used to describe the involvement of specialists listening to, developing their understanding of, and interacting with, non-specialists. The objective is to gain a broader understanding of community preferences and needs.

Socio-Economic Data

A broad range of information typically collected by the U S Census regarding humans and their lifestyles and used by planners, economists and other professional to understand problems and identify solutions to community problems. The current principal source for such data is the American Community Survey (ACS). The business community uses these data for marketing and product selection.

Subdivision Ordinance

A subdivision ordinance is a law regulating the creation of new development. Typically it will involve a subdivision plat showing the location and configuration of structures, metes and bounds of each parcel, topography, easements, streets, drainage, etc. It must be submitted and approved prior to the issuance of building permits.


The process of expansion and growth of human settlements. In the United States, during the past century there has been a massive expansion outward from central cities involving the creation of numerous smaller municipalities and the construction of highways, mass transit and urban infrastructure. This left many central cities partially abandoned. Commercial development tended to move outward in response to market demand.

Tax Abatement

A reduction in or waiver of a tax or other debt. Tax, interest, and penalty abatements are typically granted through special tax relief programs such as Missouri Law 353 or as the result of valid protest actions by a taxpayer. Tax abatement is often used to help fund new development such as shopping centers and other business developments.

Transit-Oriented Development (TOD)

A Transit-Oriented Development (TOD) is a mixed-use residential and commercial area designed to maximize access to public transport, and often incorporates features to encourage transit ridership. A TOD neighborhood typically has a center with a transit station or stop surrounded by relatively high-density development with progressively lower-density development spreading outward from the center.


In traditional business accounting, the “bottom line” refers to the sum of revenue minus expenses. The context of the Parkview Gardens Plan the concept of Triple-Bottom-Line refers to the “3 E’s”: Environment, Equity, and Economics (alternately, the “3 P’s” {People, Place, and Prosperity). This approach acknowledges that the three pillars of sustainability – environmental stewardship, improved social equity, and increased economic development – are equal in their impact on allowing current generations to meet their needs while protecting the ability of future generations to do the same.  

Urban Services

Urban services refer to the range of services expected by citizens in contemporary developed areas. These include utilities like water, sewers and gas, public safety services like police and fire protection, animal control, cultural amenities, like libraries, art museums and music and drama venues.

Zoning Ordinance

A zoning ordinance divides U-City into separate districts, e.g., residential, commercial, industrial, etc., thereby preserving the desirable characteristics of each district. Zoning helps to bring about orderly growth and change. It controls population density and helps create attractive, healthy areas and helps to assure property owners and residents that the characteristics of nearby areas will remain stable.