Lakewood to update Commercial & Residential Design Guidelines | The City of Lakewood, Ohio

Lakewood to update Commercial & Residential Design Guidelines

January 22, 2020

Last night, Mayor Meghan George and Planning Director Bryce Sylvester proposed the updating of the City of Lakewood’s Design Guidelines to Lakewood City Council to better inform renovation and new construction projects throughout Lakewood.

“The goal of this effort is to provide clearer guidance and expectations as it relates to architecture and design in Lakewood,” said Mayor George. “The guidelines will embody community values and offer direction to new development, rehabilitation, redevelopment and other improvements in Lakewood’s Commercial and Residential districts.”

Lakewood’s Commercial Design Guidelines were last updated in 2010, which was the first time they had been updated since the 1979 Lakewood Architectural Standards Workbook was adopted. The Commercial Design Guidelines remain relevant and represent years of hard work, but simply need more graphics and illustrations to help inform City audiences. The target audience is developers, designers, property owners, business owners, visitors and residents.

“Much of our time at the beginning of the process will be spent on the residential design guidelines” said Planning Director Sylvester. “A few pragmatic examples of topics we’ll discuss include porch and front entry design, garage design and orientation, addressing the process for demolition and subsequent design approval new construction, as just a few examples. We will work toward utilizing graphics and illustrations, built examples, as well as concise text to inform users of the guidelines in the clearest way possible.”

This effort will require robust engagement with boards and commissions and the community, primarily the resident-led Architectural Board of Review (ABR). ABR will weigh in on draft guidelines over the coming months and will offer the ultimate approval later this year.

“As the owner of a 98-year-old house, I know how challenging it can be to want to update your property with 21st-century technologies and aesthetics, while also letting the charm and historic nature of Lakewood’s building fabric shine through, “ said Amy Haney, Chair of ABR. “Through my 4 years of service on the Architectural Board of Review, it has been an honor to collaborate with designers, developers, residents, and property owners to create innovative and beautiful designs that will thoughtfully contribute to our urban fabric for future generations. Lakewood’s ABR members are committed to offering any guidance we can to ensure that this public process results in a clearer, more approachable, and sustainable set of Design Guidelines that will set examples for high-quality, community-centered buildings and neighborhoods.”

Planning Commission will also be involved in reviewing and adopting the proposed guidelines, and City Council will have the final vote to update Lakewood’s Design Guidelines.

For more information on this process visit or call 216-529-6630.