Indian River Design Guidelines

Heron's LandingThe Indian River Design Guidelines is a project born out of the Indian River Planning Area Study (IR Plan), adopted by City Council in December 2021. One of the implementation strategies, the Design Guidelines, was recommended and detailed through collaboration between City Staff, Boards and Commissions, consultants, stakeholders, and residents. The IR Plan evaluated the current conditions between the boundaries of the Eastern Branch of the Elizabeth River to the north, the Chesapeake/Norfolk city line to the west, the Chesapeake/ Virginia Beach city line to the east, and I-64 to the south. The key commercial corridors under consideration for the Design Guidelines are Indian River Road, Providence Road, and the eastern portion of Military Highway.   

The final document will provide staff, property owners, and other users with guidelines that will speak to the enhancement of physical character, revitalize the community-oriented main streets and detail the historical significance of the Indian River Planning Area.  Working toward the creation of a unique sense of place and a unified vision for the development of commercial corridors in Indian River.  

Indian River Design Guidelines Open House

The City of Chesapeake is hosting an open house for the Indian River planning area. We are looking to gather information from the public on how to enhance properties throughout the commercial corridors in Indian River. This discussion and input will be used to create guidelines that will help the City and developers to create well and thoughtfully designed buildings and landscapes.

  • Thursday, August 31, 5:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
  • Indian River Community Center
    • 2250 Old Greenbrier Rd.

Stop by at your convenience and share your input!

Indian River Public Meeting Flyer

The Guidelines will address the following: 

  • A clear vision and intent for the outcome of the guidelines 
  • Architecture standards 
  • Massing, scale, façade treatment and fenestration, and building materials  
  • Site standards 
  • Setbacks, heights, lot coverage, building spacing, orientation 
  • Parking 
  • Location, landscaping, required spaces  
  • Site circulation (pedestrian and vehicular) 
  • Streetscape 
  • Sidewalks and pathways, street furnishing, outdoor dining, plazas 
  • Lighting 
  • Signage 
  • Landscaping 

The Guidelines will be developed based on compatibility with surrounding neighborhoods, community, and other stakeholder feedback and recognized best practices. The Guidelines will incorporate maps, diagrams, sketches, photos, and other imagery to clearly communicate guidance, standards, and proposed elements. 

For more information about the Indian River Design Guidelines, please contact project manager Marvin Hodges by email at or call 757-382-6176.