A Town Center Plan for the City of Deerfield Beach

Community Planning Assistance Team Report



Deerfield Beach is 15 miles north of Fort Lauderdale on the Atlantic coast of Florida. The city, with a population of approximately 78,000 (following a state-mandated land annexation increasing the population by 75 percent and land by 60 percent), is essentially built out with only three percent land vacant. With the population forecast to increase, the city sought ways to guide that growth into redevelopment opportunities that encourage walkability and connectivity and promoted its unique village character. As part of a new vision, the city also hoped to reinvigorate the "heart" of old Deerfield Beach around the intersection of Dixie Highway and Hillsboro Blvd.

CPAT assisted the city with a strategy to create a walkable, mixed use district through the creation of a local activity center land use classification. The report includes an analysis of existing conditions, market assessment, retail design guidelines, planning and design recommendations, and implementation strategy.

Meet the Team

N.J. 'Pete' Pointner, FAICP
Team Leader

"Pete" Pointner, FAICP

Pete Pointner has focused his more than 50-year career on environmentally based planning and context sensitive design assignments.  He has taught at the university level and has extensive experience as a consultant, municipal planner, and coordinating consultant for major public works projects and private developments. He has carried out assignments for more than 100 public sector clients and directed projects in 25 states and four foreign countries. His experience includes serving as as acting director of planning for five communities. He is the author of Planning Connections, Human, Natural and Man Made. Visit his website www.petepointner.com.

 Robert Gibbs, AICP
Team Member

Robert Gibbs, AICP, ASLA

Robert Gibbs is an urban planning consultant who has contributed to over 400 master plans across the U.S. He also planned Michigan's first 10 New Urban communities and Form Based Codes. He founded GPG in 1988, and has prior experience with JJR/Smith and Taubman Centers. In 2012, Gibbs was honored by the Clinton Presidential Library for his life's contributions to urban planning and development and by the City of Auckland, New Zealand, for his planning innovations. During the past 20 years, Gibbs has taught a continuing education course on urban retail planning and development at Harvard's Graduate School of Design.

Margaret Rifkin, AICP
Team Member

Margaret Rifkin, AICP, RLA

Margaret K. Rifkin is an urban designer and planner for the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission in Montgomery County, Maryland. Her work has focused on plans for transforming suburban areas into walkable, mixed-use centers and on urban infill development. She recently led an innovative outreach process for the Bethesda Downtown Plan. Rifkin is a member of APA's Urban Design and Preservation Division executive committee and leads its webinar program. She is an active member of the Congress for the New Urbanism and is a Registered Landscape Architect in the State of Maryland. Rifkin holds master's degrees in landscape architecture and city and regional planning.

Adam Rosa, AICP
Team Member

Adam Rosa, AICP

Over the past 16 years, Adam Rosa has demonstrated the ability to create implementable planning and design concepts focused on placemaking and improving existing neighborhoods. He believes that successful communities must blend transportation infrastructure and public space with appropriate land use and urban form. In his work with cities from Buffalo to Honolulu (and places in between), Rosa continuously strives to generate creative ideas and solutions that capture the culture, spirit and potential of the local community. He is a senior associate with Camiros, Ltd. and was recently chosen as one of the Next City Vanguard 40-under-40 "high-level, creative and ambitious people who seek to improve their cities."


Page Count
Date Published
June 17, 2015
Adobe PDF
American Planning Association

Table of Contents


The Purpose of the CPAT Initiative

Guiding Values

Program Background

Project Overview


Executive Summary

Study Area and Proposed Uses

Walking Distance to Civic Centers

Rights-of-Way: Street Cross Sections

The Idea of the Town Center

Markey Analysis and Demographics

Market Demand

Context: Existing Conditions

The City

Planning and Design Recommendations


Meet the Team

Picture Gallery


Appendix A: Retail Market Study

Appendix B: Community Stakeholder Workshop Notes: "SWOT Analysis"

Appendix C: Illustrative Design Concepts

Appendix D: Deerfield Beach CPAT Schedule