One word that comes to mind about the former Fort Ord





Direct community input shaped the ideas and recommendations in the Regional Urban Design Guidelines (RUDG). Under the direction of the Fort Ord Reuse Authority (FORA) and RUDG Taskforce, Dover-Kohl held a public charrette in February 2015. Over the course of nine days, more than 1,200 residents and stakeholders participated in the planning process, including elected officials, neighbors, merchants, developers, and community leaders. Responsible growth requires teamwork; the high level of civic involvement displayed during the charrette process will ultimately guide growth and ensure quality development for future generations of residents.

During the charrette process community input was collected that helped shape the overall guidelines vision to improve the character of new development on Fort Ord.  The design team captured this input through a variety of means including:

  • Keypad Polling: summarizes answers to questions asked during presentations at the various hands-on design sessions.
  • Rating Urban Form: Love It or Hate It. As part of the keypad polling, participants were shown an image and asked if they “love it!,” “hate it!,” or were “indifferent” to the image. The images were then paired with similar type images from a different setting. Results of those questions are included throughout this section.
  • Word Clouds: Visual word compilations illustrating hands-on session participant descriptions of how they envision Fort Ord currently and how they would imagine Fort Ord in the future.
  • Synthesis Maps: Compilation of hands-on map exercises results from public design sessions.

Project Timeline

Completion of the RUDG was first called for in the 1997 BRP. The first step was completed with the 2005 Board adoption of the Highway 1 Design Corridor Guidelines. The 2012 Reassessment Report highlighted the need to complete the guidelines for Town & Village Centers, Gateways, Regional Circulation Corridors, and Trails on the former Fort Ord. Beginning in February 2014, the FORA Board directed staff to actively work on completion of the RUDG. See the full timeline with links to relevant draft documents and videos here.


Beginning in August 2014 the planning team gathered background information and studied the existing physical and economic conditions of the area. This effort included a thorough review of the 1997 Base Reuse Plan (BRP), the 2012 Base Reassessment Report and the 2005 Highway 1 Design Guidelines, among others. A series of analysis maps were created in order to better understand the existing conditions.


What is a charrette? Charrette is a French word translating to “little cart.” At the leading architecture school of the 19th century, the École des Beaux-Arts, students would be assigned a tough design problem to work out under pressure of time. They would continue sketching as fast as they could, even as little carts carried their work away to be judged and graded. Today, “charrette” has come to describe a rapid, intensive and creative work session in which a team focuses on a particular design problem and arrives at a collaborative solution. Charrettes are product-oriented. The public charrette is fast becoming a preferred way to face the planning challenges confronting American communities.