About 200 people visited the Washington Senior Center Wednesday night for an informal vote on draft goals to be included in Washington’s new comprehensive plan.
Darren Lamb, community and economic development director, said the number was higher than expected. A total of 100 surveys had been preprinted.
“I was kind of surprised with the turnout, but it appears, based on those who attended — a lot felt that this was an opportunity to voice their issues with annexation the city is studying.”
Dan Lang of the Lang Gang Inc., the consultant hired to develop the plan, said he was thrilled with the turnout, despite the annexation issue.
“I think certainly annexation is one component of the overall comprehensive plan. It’s one item of many that you look at in terms of the city’s growth and development,” Lang said.
“We appreciate the fact that people are involved in the process. Even people who perhaps came for a single purpose. We believe that their input is important to the process.
Lang said that even though some are outside the city limits, they are a part of the Washington community because they drive, eat, shop and receive city services in Washington.
“We want them to continue to be involved in the process,” Lang said.
Results from the survey have not yet been tabulated, Lang said, though he expects to begin counting the results this weekend.
Lamb and Lang said they hope results will be ready for the next steering committee meeting, which is set for Tuesday, June 12, at 3 p.m. at Washington City Hall.
For those who were not able to attend the public voting session, the survey is now online. It can be accessed through the City of Washington, MO Comprehensive Plan Facebook page.
Lamb said that the goal of putting the survey online is to get more responses from citizens.
Lang said his firm will compare and contrast the online results with the results from the public meeting. The survey will be available online for several weeks.
Like at the public meeting, those who take the survey online will choose 16 goals they feel are the most important. They also will get one red dot and one green dot. The red dot is to place next to a goal they feel is the least important and the green dot is to place next to the goal they feel is the most important.
The goals are grouped into six focus topics including aesthetics, civic improvement, land use, transportation/infrastructure, parks/recreation and economic development.
Lang said that he will bring the results of the meeting to the steering committee, which will then decide whether to add goals, reduce goals or change the wording of the goals.
Next, the committee will move toward making final goals.
Each final goal will have a number of objectives to meet the goal, Lang said.
Once the objectives are in draft form, it will be brought to the public for participation, though the format for public participation will be different from the first public participation.