County Comp Plan Thread debates Rural Airport, Kenan Stadium

Since May 2008 I count six posts relating to the County Comp Plan. The event calendar thread of Nov. 17 by far has generated the most comments -- 25 and counting. However, few of these comments actually debate the proposed comp plan -- which will guide growth and development in the county's planning jurisdiction for the next 20 years. Great interest is shown regarding the possible HW replacement airport being build in the county and in the funding of Kenan Stadium. The post from May 17 generated the most debate about the plan of any of the posts -- eight total.

 I'm concerned this "evidence" accurately portrays the degree of disinterest in how County government intends to "plan" for our future.

 the link below directs you to the Orange County Comprehensive Plan Coalition website




Even for a nerd like myself who is passionate about planning and land use, it was hard to engage with the Comprehensive Plan process. It would have been helpful to have more SHORT guides and analysis of the plan. For example, there was this local coalition that seemed to be lobbying on the plan but did they put out a summary that might help other folks understand their concerns? If so, I never saw it.In my ideal world, the County would make the entire process easier to understand and engage in by having lots more ways to understand and give feedback on the plan for people who think in different ways. Some folks are  much more responsive online, some prefer small meetings, some need tohear it from a friend or neighbor, some might enjoy a short video with lots of maps, etc.

Ruby, good suggestions about making the process easier to understand and engage in. Maybe the County Commissioners, Planning Board and Planning Dept. will incorporate some of these as the Comp Plan process moves into it's implementation phase in the new year. They are more likely to do it if the Commissioners hear directly from concerned citizens about this. Also, the Orange County Comprehensive Plan Coalition earnestly tried to fill some of this void. But as I noted recently, the process itself had many shortcomings and ending up being frustrating for most Coaliton participants. And, the Coaltion did/does not lobby. We advocated for our conerns and worked to inform the public about the Comp Plan process.     

At last night's BOCC meeting, the plan was approved unaminously.  Hopefully, there will be more public engagement and input as they execute the implementation phase in the one-year period that they have allocated, but it appears that it will be difficult to get people excited about this.  Last night, the hot issues, at least judging by the number of speakers, were the CIP and getting money to complete Carrboro HS (not a Commissioner action, as they pointed out several times) and the tethering issue.


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