Draft Goals Set for Washington's New Comprehensive Plan - The Missourian: News

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Draft Goals Set for Washington's New Comprehensive Plan

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Posted: Saturday, May 19, 2012 10:30 am | Updated: 7:21 pm, Sat Jun 22, 2013.

A total of 42 goals have been drafted for the six focus topics that will be covered in Washington’s new comprehensive plan.

Dan Lang, of the Lang Gang Inc., the consultant hired to develop the plan, suggested these goals with the comprehensive plan’s steering committee making changes.

The plan, once complete, will cover six main focus topics — transportation/other infrastructure, parks/recreation/open space, economic development, land use, civic improvement, and aesthetics.

On April 24, the steering committee and Lang agreed on 21 draft goals for aesthetics, civic improvement and land use.

During the steering committee’s meeting with Lang Tuesday, May 15, another 21 goals were drafted for the remaining topics.

These goals are not final and will be voted on informally by the public Wednesday, June 6, from 6-8 p.m. at the Washington Senior Center, 1459 W. Fifth St., below the Elks Hall.

“For 10 minutes, give us your opinion,” Lang said, noting that once people vote on a private ballot listing all 42 draft goals, they can leave.

Lang explained that each voter will be given about 16 stars to place next to goals they consider to be the most important. Lang said because there are only 16 stars, but 42 goals, “they will have to make some tough decisions.”

The public also will be provided with one green sticker for the goal “they fall in love with” and one red sticker for the goal “that doesn’t affect them.” In addition, there will be space for the public to write in their own goals.

Once Lang’s group tabulates all of the responses, he will share them with the committee June 12 at 3 p.m. at city hall.

At that meeting, the committee will start reviewing the goals and decide whether to eliminate, keep or reword the goals.

Lang said just because one goal gets the most votes doesn’t necessarily mean it will be kept in the plan and vice versa.

The goals were drafted based on feedback received from a public input visioning meeting held Feb. 28.

According to Lang, there will be about three to five objectives listed in the plan to achieve each goal.

Below are the draft goals for transportation/other infrastructure, parks/recreation/open space and economic development.

Transportation/Other Infrastructure

• Investigate an expanded public transit option for the community.

• Expand the city of Washington’s pedestrian/bikeway network.

• Improve the transportation flow throughout the community.

• Continue a transportation program to keep the streets safe and well-maintained in the future.

• Ensure that the public safety (emergency response services) needs of the community are adequately met.

• Continue to upgrade, enhance and construct sufficient bridge structures in the area.

• Continue to meet the needs of other infrastructure resources such as water, wastewater and stormwater management.

• Continue to expand other transportation resources, such as the airport, rail and water infrastructure.

• Investigate the telecommunications (cable, broadband, Internet) needs of the community.

Parks/Recreation/Open Space

• Enhance the existing and explore the development of new park facilities within the city of Washington.

• Continue to create additional recreational programs and activities for the community.

• Create additional park and open space through new development activity and other opportunities.

• Address key environmental issues to enhance the outdoor experience for area residents.

• Continue to develop landscaping regulations for nonresidential development to enhance the aesthetic qualities of Washington.

• Preserve and protect special open space resources such as floodplains, wetlands and stream corridors.

• Develop the riverfront, including the downtown region.

Economic Development

• Expand our long-term strategy to promote growth for the city of Washington.

• Increase the economic vitality of Downtown Washington in both attracting and retaining businesses.

• Broaden the city’s economic base by attracting diverse businesses.

• Review the city’s policy concerning the use of economic development incentives to create economic opportunity.

• Focus on making the city of Washington a destination location in the St. Louis metropolitan region.

Street Plan

Also at the June 12 meeting, steering committee members will start the process of creating a major street plan, which will cover the city’s transportation network and look at new roads as well as reconstructing or realigning existing streets.

The city’s last comprehensive plan, Envision Washington, was adopted in 2003 and many goals in that plan have been implemented.

The final comprehensive plan is expected to be completed by the end of this year.

Public hearings regarding the plan will be held later this year at planning and zoning commission and city council meetings.

Once finalized, the zoning commission will adopt the plan followed by a resolution of support by the council.

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