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City chooses comprehensive planner
Friday, April 24, 2009 by Austin Monitor
The long-delayed Comprehensive Plan for the City of
In choosing WRT, council waived the staff recommendation, which had been for ACP Visioning and Planning. Council Member Laura Morrison introduced the motion saying WRT “brings together everything to be successful in the coming year or so.” She continued, “Their understanding of the role of staff and citizens is what we really need,” and complimented their broad approach to economic policies and the fiscal impact of growth.
The chosen consultant had the support of
Council Member Randi Shade agreed and said “If there is a silver lining in this economic situation, it’s that we can engage in planning without it being dominated by development.” Shade told In Fact Daily, “I think they were all incredibly close,” but said WRT was actually ranked the highest on the staff review before the optional interviews. “Given the complexity of the written proposals I guess I felt the interview was given undue points, it was 20 percent of the final score which just made ACP a few points ahead.”
She said in project experience and availability of staff WRT ranked higher. “I really like how WRT acknowledged what problems might exist in the citizen participation process and they’ve addressed these problems in the past and had some interesting ideas of how to deal with that going forward. Council Member Sheryl Cole also complimented the WRT team and said, “they seem to want to also freely discuss the equity issues we’d deal with in transportation.”
Such issues would presumably include the proposed East 290 toll road in
The city has had several meetings this year in an attempt to gather feedback from citizens.
Alice Glasco, a local consultant and independent city planner also encouraged council to act. “Our current comprehensive plan is 30 years old and the last update to the plan was initiated in the mid-80s. It made it all the way to the city council after several years of dialogue with
The money for the Comprehensive Plan would come from a transportation bond and be meted out over the next two years.
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