Form Based-Code Project

Town of Zionsville

Zionsville, IN

For full RFP, please visit

Form Based-Code Consultant for the Town of Zionsville, Indiana

Issue Date: September 1, 2020


Owen Young
Planner II/Project Manager
Town of Zionsville
Planning & Economic Development Department
1100 W Oak Street
Zionsville, IN 46077


Wayne DeLong, AICP, CPM
Director of Planning and Economic Development
Town of Zionsville
Planning & Economic Development Department

Julie Johns-Cole
Deputy Mayor
Town of Zionsville

Proposals Due: October 1, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. EST

All proposals are due by 11:59 p.m. (local time) on October 1, 2020. Late submissions will not be considered. Only electronic submissions (submitted via parcel delivery, email, or drop off at Town Hall Utility Billing Payment Box) will be accepted.  Please submit all proposals to the following mailing address, drop off location at Town Hall (proposal installed on media device of your choice), and/or email address:

Owen Young
Planner II / Project Manager
Town of Zionsville
Planning & Economic Development Department
1100 W Oak Street
Zionsville, IN 46077

With CC to:

Questions should be sent in writing by email to: Owen Young, (cc:

An Addendum containing submitted Questions received on/by September 14, 2020 will be provided via email to parties that have submitted Questions on or prior to September 14, 2020.  The Addendum will be emailed to parties submitting Questions approximately 10 calendar days prior to the deadline date for submittal of any responses to this Request for Proposals.

Questions posed after September 14, 2020, due to workflow, may not be answered by the Town in time for use and incorporation into a Respondent’s submittal.    


The Town of Zionsville (the “Town”) is requesting proposals from interested consulting firms to update our existing land use regulations from traditional style Zoning to include a Form-Based Code. While there have been additions and modifications throughout the years, the Town’s land use regulations have not gone through a full review or an update since inception.  The Town would like an update that keeps it forward thinking.  That enhances what is working, address current and future needs, incorporate additional planning goals, and revise the ordinances to a modern planning platform. The Town feels it is time to comprehensively review and update its land use regulations so that they can be more easily understood by the community, so they are consistent with state and federal statutes, and up to date with contemporary zoning and subdivision practices.


The Town was established in 1852 and is located a mere 20 minutes north from the major metropolitan amenities of Indianapolis, Indiana. The Town covers approximately 67 square miles with an estimated population of 27,153 (July 2018).  The Town consolidated the townships of Union & Eagle (2010) and the unincorporated portion of Perry (2016) into its jurisdiction.  In so doing this, it has a unique footprint and is bifurcated by an adjoining jurisdiction.

The current Zoning Ordinance was adopted in 2010 and has been amended several times.  The Town has codified its Zoning Ordinance and the codified version can be viewed at  The Town’s Comprehensive Plan has been several times as well in the same time period.  The Town seeks professional planning & zoning assistance to create a Form-Based Zoning Ordinance that incorporates the goals and objectives identified in Town’s Comprehensive Plan.    

The Town, as a result of various amendments and addendums to the rules and regulations associated with development of land and the installation of improvements, has adopted a variety of documents, including:

Construction & Design Standards

Fire Protection Ordinance

Storm Water Ordinance

Subdivision Control Ordinance

These various documents are integral to the Town’s processes. Respondents should incorporate within the Form-Based Code a system or methodology that ensures a continued relationship between the documents and the new Code.    


The Town will review the responses and interview one or more Respondents.  The Town will have the Respondents provide a more detailed scope of work following the interview. After the proposal issue date, all communications between the Town and Respondents regarding this RFP shall be in writing. Any inquiries, requests for interpretation, technical questions, clarification, or additional information (“Questions”) shall be directed to Owen Young, Planner II/Project Manager by emailing  See top of this page for further details.

Information submitted in response to this Request for Proposals shall include the following:

  1. Contact information: Name, address, email address, and phone number of the consulting firm;
  2. Type of organization: Partnership, corporation, sole proprietorship; primary location of firm; names and experience of principles or directors;
  3. Firm Staffing: Names, titles, experience, and length of service of key personnel;
  4. Statement of qualifications: Narrative or other statement by the firm of its qualifications to assist with the process to create the Town’s new Form-Based Code.
  5. Availability: Statement of the availability of key personnel of the firm to undertake this project;
  6. Fees and Costs: Provide a listing of fees or hourly rates for members of the consulting team that will be involved in this project, including support personnel (do not include information on personnel who will not be regularly involved in the project);
  7. Project List: List of similar projects completed or currently underway by the firm and/or key personnel referenced under Availability; and 
  8. References: Names and telephone numbers of at least three references including name of project, brief description of project, and primary contact information whom the Town can call regarding past performance, preferably on similar projects.

Respondents shall submit their qualifications on or before October 1, 2020 at 11:59p EST as described on pages one and two of this document.

4. SCOPE OF SERVICES The intent of the Scope of Services described herein is to serve as a framework of major tasks as currently envisioned by the Town for the consultant’s information. This is not a comprehensive list.

  1. A complete Scope of Services and an estimated fixed fee will be developed in consultation with the selected firm based on the Town’s needs and the firm’s experience and capabilities. The Town has envisioned the following so far: A. Conduct a comprehensive review and analysis of the land use regulations and develop a Formed-Based Code, including assessing the strengths and weaknesses of the existing regulations in terms of structure, organization, clarity, ease of use, existing zoning districts and district standards, regulations of general applicability, definitions, and all procedures.
  2. Identify and recommend for inclusion, text and procedures that have not been identified by Town staff in the professional opinion of the selected firm and should be addressed to insure a complete and effective ordinance that meets local needs.
  3. Identify and correct any internal inconsistencies, omissions or errors, including grammatical and other issues in the plans.
  4. Ensure that the Form-Based Code conforms to generally accepted land use law and principles as well as state and federal statutes and case law.
  5. Create, to the fullest extent possible, a user friendly, simplified, clear and easily understood Form-Based Code, including:
    1. Revise vague, unclear or confusing language and ensure that language, terms and intent are consistent from one section to another.
    2. Ensure the essential words used in the text of the document are defined in the Definitions section and revise incorrect or inadequate definitions.
    3. Revise sections of the ordinances that are in conflict with other sections, have unintended impacts on other sections or are overly complex.
    4. Recommend improvements to the layout of the ordinance.
  6. Create the Table of Permitted Uses and Development Standards which result in a more modern and comprehensive list of permitted uses tailored to the Town’s zoning districts and development climate.
  7. The firm will be required to attend and facilitate public meetings & hearings with the Town Council, Planning Commission, residents, and other stakeholders and prepare multiple drafts of the proposed code and ordinance for review and comment. Town Staff will be available to assist the firm to facilitate the process. Town Staff will assist in meeting arrangements, advertising public meetings, workshops and hearings and other logistics. Staff will also work closely with the firm by reviewing any work product before it is submitted to any reviewing body or presented to the public.
  8. The firm will be required to maintain a project website related to the Form-Based Code effort.  The website will at a minimum provide project specific information as well an interface for the public to solicit and gain knowledge regarding the public process associated with the creation of the Form-Based Code. 


Town Staff will review the submitted qualifications using the following criteria:

  1. Firm experience/reputation/workload: Experience of the firm in similar work and record of successful results of that work. Also considered will be the firm’s ability to take on additional work, demonstrated understanding of the Town’s goals and purposes of the project, specific management approach, how well the firm’s organization structure shows sufficient depth of its present workload, and the firm’s ability to offer the breadth and quality of services required for this project. Additionally, the firm’s successful experience performing other services for the Town on past and current projects may be considered.
  2. Qualifications of the personnel assigned to this project team: The Town will give considerable weight to the individual qualifications of the project team members who will do most of the work on the project. Consideration will include qualifications of key personnel, project team member’s individual experience and other qualifications, project manager’s experience, sub-consultant’s (if applicable) individual experience and qualifications.
  3. Schedule: Consideration will be given to the firm’s availability to complete the plan updates within a reasonable timeframe.
  4. Work Performed Locally: The firm’s ability to perform the work locally will be considered.


Town Staff will determine if interviews are needed in order to finalize selection among top candidates. Upon selection, the Consultant will be contacted to finalize the contract, fee structure and project timeframe. Final approval will be given by the Mayor.


Town Obligation: There is no expressed or implied obligation for the Town to reimburse firms for any expenses incurred in preparing proposals in response to this request.

Late Submissions: Any proposals received after the deadline will not be accepted or considered.

Withdrawal of Proposal: Respondents may withdraw all or any portion of a proposal at any time during and after the review and award process, up to the ratification of an agreement between the Town and the designated firm.

Withdrawal of Request for Proposal: The Town retains at all times the right to cancel or withdraw this RFP, to refuse to accept a proposal from any Respondent and to modify or amend any portion of this RFP. Notification will be provided to all consultants involved in RFP process.

Applicable laws shall apply: The contract awarded shall be governed in all respects by the laws of Indiana, and the consultant awarded the contract shall comply with applicable Federal, State, and local laws and regulations.

Equal Opportunity: The Town seeks to ensure that all segments of the business community have access to supply the services needed. The Town provides equal opportunity for all businesses and does not discriminate against any provider regardless of race, color, religion, age sex national origin or disability. The Town encourages minority and women owned business participation in the contracting process.

Confidentiality: RFP responses will become public record and, therefore, are subject to public disclosure once a contract is awarded.

Contract: The Contract will be awarded to a single Firm. The Contract for services is anticipated to begin December 1, 2020. The contract will be reviewed by the Town Attorney.  The Town’s standard form of contract (CONTRACT FOR GOODS AND SERVICES) is incorporated as a part of this release.


Visit  for more information on Town of Zionsville’s previous/current plans & ordinances. 

Request Type
Thursday, October 1, 2020

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