The Innovista Master Plan is a visionary plan designed to create a vibrant, mixed-use urban neighborhood in Columbia, the capital city of South Carolina. The plan will support the continued renaissance of downtown Columbia as well as the emergence of the University of South Carolina as a nationally recognized, comprehensive research university.
The Innovista area, roughly bounded by Gervais to the north, Catawba to the south, Assembly to the east, and the Congaree River to the west, encompasses about a quarter of Columbia's City Center. The existing context of the area is largely undeveloped land, parking lots, and low-density industrial and commercial uses. These guidelines are based on and support the proposed uses, densities, building envelopes, and special districts outlined in the Innovista Master Plan, endorsed by City Council on October 17, 2007. While these guidelines apply to the entire area zoned with the -ID Overlay, the Innovista Master Plan should be used for guidance, especially in cases where specific setbacks, building massing, and open-space plans are recommended.
The intent of the design guidelines is not to restrict creative architecture, but rather to guide development to ensure it contributes positively to the Innovista District and to Columbia's larger City Center. To this end, the guidelines are not exhaustive or formulaic, but are intended to help new developments meet the principals of pedestrian- friendly, quality urban development.