Local governments like to develop mixed uses for many reasons. They put less pressure on infrastructure costs than broader development, create accessible employment opportunities, reduce transportation and help boost local trade. Developers are responding to demographic and environmental changes that are fuelling this type of development, not only in the city centre, but also in riot zones, especially in places close to public transport. The differences between condominium projects and vertical airspace divisions are subtle but significant. The management of condominium projects is generally heavily regulated by state laws, while vertical subdivisions of airspace may not be established. Condominium projects are subject to thought statements on agreements, conditions and restrictions (CC-R) that form a board of directors and set out strict evaluation requirements and usage restrictions. Instead, a vertical subdivision is covered by a reciprocal facilitation agreement (REA) that may be less formal, but also involves cross-cutting facilities, management and cost-sharing for the entire project. Adopted in 1995, the Local Project Review Act (Chapter 36.70B RCW) provides for specific authority and direction for development agreements. See in particular RCW 36.70B.170 – .210 and WAC 365-196-845. Long-term development agreements sometimes require changes when market conditions or other conditions change. Similarly, a developer may be forced to terminate a contract if he or she is unable to secure financing or wants to do something completely different with the property. Each party may attempt to terminate an agreement if the terms of the agreement are not met.
Most agreements offer some flexibility for such changes if the parties agree. In most cases, building components are designed in a mixed-use project to be held separately. An apartment building may own market-priced housing, while a tax credit unit may own the affordable units. A residential block can be sold as a condominium, while retail, office, hospitality or garage components can be operated by companies specializing in these uses. In these cases, the components of the project must be legally split. This can be done either by dividing the project into condominiums or, if the state and local jurisdiction allow it, by creating a vertical subdivision of airspace. Mixed developments are generally designed to attract the public to their commercial and commercial components, but should also provide homeowners and tenants with sufficient privacy and security. Ideally, this should include intrusions and separate exits for residents.
Developers should consider whether the car parks are separate or closed and whether common spaces and amenities are available to users of different components of the project. Proper lighting is not only useful, but can also be a necessity for risk management in order to avoid future design adhesions. Whether it`s condominiums or vertical airspace parcels, the development of the mixed use of the future will offer more and more places to live, work, play and shop in or near an all-inclusive environment. Because stationary retailing suffers from the hands of e-commerce, stores can be reduced, specialized and/or closely geared towards serving residents and workers. Restaurants or hotels, instead of shops, can be anchored as a project, along with the housing units. From a claims perspective, developers still face state-imposed conditions such as affordable housing, prevailing wages, energy efficiency, traffic management and sustainability requirements, to name a few.