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Public help needed on future planning

City of Bainbridge officials hope the public will become more involved with development of an update to the city’s long-term planning documents.

Although no citizens showed up to a public input session concerning the city’s Comprehensive Plan Update, there’s still more chances for citizens to have their say on the future of Bainbridge.

So far, those working on the update have a draft plan update developed by Robert and Company, the consulting firm hired to prepare it. The plan will serve as a long-range guide for the city’s growth and development through the year 2030. The state government requires local governments to update their comprehensive plans on a regular basis.

One of the most important parts of the plan is the city’s Future Land Use Map, which shows what parts of the city will be used for residential, commercial and other uses in the future. The Future Land Use Map is similar to a zoning map and is commonly referred to by the city’s zoning officials when they are considering rezoning requests.

The next public meeting on the plan update will be held at the Potter Street Community Center on Thursday, March 18.

Copies of the existing Future Land Use Map—which last saw a major revision in 2005—will be spread out on tables and citizens will be able to use markers to express their opinion on the maps.

City Planner Dustin Dowdy said he encourages people to come and look at the maps so they can see what their neighborhood may look like in the future as the city grows.

Another component of the plan will be a list of goals leaders hope to achieve for the city—for example, reducing poverty and creating more jobs. The list will be accompanied by a more specific document detailing how those goals might be achieved.

To access documents related to the plan update and take a survey about Bainbridge, people may visit www.bainbridgecity.com or http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Bainbridge2030/