Glossary of Terms

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Absorption
The amount of business, industrial, or residential units that will be necessary to accommodate future growth in a region.

ADOT
Arizona Department of Transportation.

Agriculture
Use of land for the production of food and fiber, including the growing of crops and/or the grazing of animals on natural prime or improved pasture land.

Aggregate
Cinder, crushed rock or stone, decomposed granite, gravel, pumice, pumicite and sand.

Air Pollution
Concentrations of substances found in the atmosphere that exceed naturally occurring quantities and are undesirable or harmful in some way.

Annex
To incorporate a land area into an existing district or municipality, with a resulting change in the boundaries of the annexing jurisdiction.

Archaeological
Relating to the material remains of past human life, culture or activities.

Base (or Basic) Economy
Those sectors that bring money into the local region. In other words, a sector that exports out of the City. A sector that has a higher percentage of a region’s total employment than that percentage statewide.

Bikeways
A term that encompasses bicycle lanes, bicycle paths, and bicycle routes. Bikeways are divided into three basic categories based on the degree to which they separate bicycles from other travel modes: Class I bikeways (bike “paths”) – characterized by completely separate cyclists from motorists; Class II bikeways (bike “lanes”) – delineated by signs and striping along street shoulders; and Class III bikeways (bike “routes”) – indicated only by posted signs on existing streets.

Bonds
A certificate of debt issued by an entity, guaranteeing payment of the original investment, plus interest, by a specified future date.

Buildout
Development of land to its full potential or theoretical capacity as permitted under current or proposed planning or zoning designations.

Capital Improvement Program (CIP)
A program, administered by the City and reviewed by the Planning and Zoning Commission and City Council, which schedules permanent improvements, usually for a minimum of five years in the future, to fit the projected fiscal capability of the local jurisdiction. The program generally is reviewed annually, for conformance and consistency with the general plan.

Capture
Amount of retail sales and/or services a region provides to people living outside the region.

Commercial
A land use classification that permits facilities for the buying and selling of commodities and services.

Community Development Block Grant (CDBG)
Established to account for financing the rehabilitation of homes and government structures. Financing is provided by Federal Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

Compatible
Capable of existing together without conflict or ill effects.

Conservation
The management of natural resources to prevent waste, destruction or neglect.

Dedication
The turning over by an owner or developer of private land for public use, and the acceptance of land for such by the governmental agency having jurisdiction over the public function for which it will be used. Dedications for roads, parks, school sites or other public uses often are made conditions for approval of a development by a city or county.

Dedication, In-lieu of
Cash payments that may be required by an owner or developer as a substitute for a dedication of land, usually calculated in dollars per lot, and referred to as in-lieu fees or contributions.

Density, Residential
The number of permanent residential dwelling units per acre of land. Densities specified in a general plan are expressed in units per gross developable acre.

Detention/Retention Basin
Dams may be classified according to the broad function they serve, such as storage, diversion or detention. Detention dams are constructed to retard flood runoff and minimize the effect of sudden floods. Detention dams fall into two main types. In one type, the water is temporarily stored, and released through an outlet structure at a rate which will not exceed the carrying capacity of the channel downstream. Often, the basins are landscaped with turf and used for open space or recreation in periods of dry weather. The other type, most often called a Retention Basin, allows for water to be held as long as possible and may or may not allow for the controlled release of water. In some cases, the water is allowed to seep into the permeable banks or gravel strata in the foundation. This latter type is sometimes called a Water-Spreading Dam or Dike because its main purpose is to recharge the underground water supply. Detention dams are also constructed to trap sediment. These are often called Debris Dams.

Development
The physical extension and/or construction of urban land uses. Development activities include, but are limited to: subdivision of land; construction or alteration of structures, roads, utilities and other facilities; installation of water and wastewater systems; grading; deposit of refuse, debris or fill materials; and clearing of natural vegetative cover.

Expenditures
Current operating expenses which require the current or future use of net current assets, debt service, and capital outlays. The actual payment for goods and services.

Expenses
The total cost of operations during a period of time.

Family
A group of two or more related persons residing together. A person maintaining a household alone, or with unrelated persons only, is regarded as a household, but not as a family.

Fiscal Year
The City defines the fiscal year as the 12-month period from July 1 to June 30 inclusive. The annual operating budget applies to this 12-month period. At the end of the fiscal year, the City determines its financial position and the results of its operations.

Floor Area Ratio (FAR)
The gross floor area permitted on a site divided by the total net area of the site, expressed in decimals to one or two places. For example, on a site with 10,000 net square feet of land area, a Floor Area Ratio (FAR) of 1.0 will allow a maximum of 10,000 gross square feet of building floor area to be built. On the same site, a FAR of 1.5 would allow 15,000 square feet of floor area; a FAR of 2.0 would allow 20,000 square feet; and a FAR of 0.5 would allow only 5,000 square feet. Also commonly used in zoning, FARs typically are applied on a parcel-by-parcel basis as opposed to an average FAR for an entire land use or zoning district.

Fund
A fiscal and accounting entity with a self-balancing set of accounts, which are segregated for the purpose of carrying on specific activities or attaining certain objectives in accordance with special regulations, restrictions, or limitations.

Fund Balance
Difference between the assets (revenues and other resources) and liabilities (expenditures incurred or committed) of a particular fund.

General Fund
The fund used to account for all financial resources except those required to be accounted for in another fund. The primary source of monies comes from local property, and sales taxes that are used to pay for general City services.

General Plan
A compendium of City policies regarding its long-term development in the form of maps and text. The General Plan is a legal document required by each municipality and county local agency by the State of Arizona adopted by the City Council. In Florence, the General Plan has seven mandatory elements (Land Use, Circulation, Open Space, Environmental Planning, Cost of Development, Water Resources, and Growth Areas.)

Historic; Historical
An historic building or site is one that is noteworthy for its significance in local, state or national history or culture, its architecture or design, or its work of art, memorabilia or artifacts.

Historic Preservation
The preservation of historically significant structures and neighborhoods until such time as, and in order to facilitate, restoration and rehabilitation of the building(s) to a former condition.

Household
The person(s) living is a single housing unit. Household is generally synonymous with “occupied housing unit.”

In-Lieu Fee
(See “Dedication, In- lieu of.”)

Industrial
The manufacture, production and processing of consumer goods. Industrial is often divided into “heavy industrial” uses such as construction yards, quarrying, and factories and “light industrial” uses such as research and development and less intensive warehousing and manufacturing.

Land Use
The occupation or utilization of land area for any human activity or any purpose defined in the General Plan.

Land Use Classification
A system for classifying and designating the appropriate use of properties.

Leakage
Amount of retail sales and/or services sold to residents of a region from businesses outside the region.

Level of Service (LOS)
A standard to measure the quality of traffic flow. LOS grades range from “A” to “F” with “A” the best and “F” the worst. The level of service of a roadway segment is determined by comparing the traffic volume to the estimated capacity of the roadway. The higher the ratio of volume to capacity, the poorer the level of service.

Manufacturing
The mechanical or chemical transformation of substances or materials into new products.

Median
The midpoint in a series of numbers where half the numbers are greater and half the numbers are less.

Mixed Use
Properties on which various uses, such as office, commercial, institutional and residential, are combined in a single building or on a single site in an integrated development project with significant functional interrelationships and a coherent physical design. A “single site” may include contiguous properties.

National Register of Historic Places
The official list established by the National Historic Preservation Act, of sites, districts, buildings, structures, and objects significant in the nation’s history or whose artistic or architectural value is unique.

Non-Base (or Basic) Economy
Service and retailing aimed at meeting the needs of the local residents and businesses. Some goods and services produced by the non-base economy consumed by residents is imported from outside the region.

Peak Hour/Peak Period
For any given roadway, a daily period during which traffic volume is highest, usually occurring in the morning and evening commute periods. Where “F” Levels of Service are encountered, the “peak hour” may stretch into a “peak period” of several hours duration.

Planning Area
The planning area is the area of influence of the City and the area addressed by the General Plan.

Policy
A specific statement of principle or of guiding actions that implies clear commitment but is not mandatory. A general direction the City sets to follow in order to meet its goals and objectives before undertaking an action program.

Recreation, Active
A type of recreation or activity that requires the use of organized play areas including, but not limited to, softball, baseball, football and soccer fields, tennis and basketball courts and various forms of children’s play equipment.

Recreation, Passive
A type of recreation or activity that does not require the use of organized play areas.

Recycle
The process if extraction and reuse of materials from waste products.

Redevelop
To demolish existing buildings or to increase the overall floor area existing on a property or both, irrespective of whether a change occurs in land use.

Regional
Pertaining to activities or economics at a scale greater than that of a single jurisdiction and affecting a broad geographic area.

Residential
Land designated in the general plan and zoning ordinance for buildings consisting only of dwelling units. May be improved, vacant, or unimproved.

Residential, Multiple Family
Usually three or more dwelling units on a single site that may be in the same or separate buildings.

Residential, Single-family
A single dwelling unit on a building site.

Retail Trade
All establishments primarily engaged in selling merchandise for personal or household consumption and rendering services incidental to the sale of goods.

Retention Basin
(See “Detention Basin/Detention Pond.”)

Riparian Lands
Riparian lands are comprised of the vegetative and wildlife areas adjacent to perennial and intermittent streams. Riparian areas are delineated by the existence of plant species normally found near fresh water.

Sanitary Landfill
The controlled placement of refuse within a limited area, followed by compaction and covering with a suitable thickness of earth and other containment material.

Septic System
A sewage-treatment system that includes a settling tank through which liquid sewage flows and in which solid sewage settles and is decomposed by bacteria in the absence of oxygen. Septic systems are often used for individual- home waste disposal where an urban sewer system is not available.

Service Sector
Those establishments primarily engaged in rendering a wide variety of services to individuals, business and government establishments, and other organizations.

Solid Waste
Any unwanted or discarded material that is not a liquid or gas. Includes organic wastes, paper products, metals, glass, plastics, cloth, brick, rock, soil, leather, rubber, yard wastes and wood, but does not include sewage and hazardous materials. Organic wastes and paper products comprise about 75 percent of typical urban solid waste.

Storm Water Runoff
Surplus surface water generated by rainfall that does not seep into the earth but flows overland to flowing or stagnant bodies of water.

Traffic Model
A mathematical representation of traffic movement within an area or region based on observed relationships between the kind and intensity of development in specific areas. Many traffic models operate on the theory that trips are produced by persons living in residential areas and are attracted by various nonresidential land uses (See “Trip.”)

Transit
The conveyance of persons or goods from one place to another by means of a local, public transportation system.

Trip
A one-way journey that proceeds from an origin to a destination via a single mode of transportation; the smallest unit of movement considered in transportation studies. Each trip has one “production end” (or origin –often from home, but not always) and one “attraction end” (destination).

Trip Generation
The dynamics that account for people making trips in automobiles or by means of public transportation. Trip generation is the basis for estimating the level of use for a transportation system and the impact of additional development or transportation facilities on an existing, local transportation system. Trip generation of households are correlated with destinations that attract household members for specific purposes.

Undevelopable
Specific areas where topographic, geologic, and/or soil conditions indicate a significant danger to future occupants and a liability to a City are designated as “undevelopable”. These areas generally include floodplain areas and excessive slope areas.

Use
The purpose for which a lot or structure is or may be leased, occupied maintained, arranged, designed, intended, constructed, erected, moved, altered, and/or enlarged in accordance with the City zoning ordinance and General Plan land use designations.

Vacant
Lands or buildings that are not actively used for any purpose.

Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT)
A key measure of overall street and highway use. Reducing VMT is often a major objective in efforts to reduce vehicular congestion and achieve regional air quality goals.

Volume-to-Capacity Ratio
A measure of the operating capacity of a roadway or intersection, in terms of the number of vehicles passing through, divided by the number of vehicles that theoretically could pass through when the roadway or intersection is operating at its designed capacity. Abbreviated as “v/c.” At a v/c ratio of 1.0, the roadway or intersection is operating at capacity. If the ratio is less than 1.0, the traffic facility has additional capacity. Although ratios slightly greater than 1.0 are possible, it is more likely that the peak hour will elongate into a “peak period.”

Wetlands
Transitional areas between terrestrial and aquatic systems where the water table is usually at or near the surface, or the land is covered by shallow water. Under a “unified” methodology now used by all federal agencies, wetlands are defined as “those areas meeting certain criteria for hydrology, vegetation, and soils.”

Zone (Traffic Analysis Zone or TAZ)
In a mathematical traffic model, the area to be studied is divided into zones, with each zone treated as producing and attracting trips. The production of trips by a zone is based on the number of trips to or from work or shopping, or other trips produced per dwelling unit.

Zoning
The division of the City and County by legislative regulations into areas or zones which specify allowable uses for real property and size restrictions for buildings within these areas; a program that implements policies of the general plan.

Zoning District
A designated section of the City or County for which prescribed land use requirements and building and development standards are uniform.