Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Public Input Wanted for Local Planning Initiatives

Local planners are continuing to seek community input to be used in planning what the City of Easton and the Lehigh Valley should look like in the future, and to that effect, two upcoming public meetings are scheduled to gather residents' ideas.
The City of Easton will hold a public meeting to gather input to be used in its  comprehensive plan rewrite on Monday, May 13, beginning at 6 6:30 p.m. at the Salvation Army, located at 1110 Northampton St.

The Comprehensive Plan rewrite process will be coordinated by the Easton planning staff, with oversight and input from Mayor Sal Panto, the Easton Planning Commission, and city council members. Refreshments will be provided to participants by the West Ward Neighborhood Partnership.
This meeting is the latest in a series of such events held in various locations around the city. A similar meeting to gather input in the West Ward was held late last year at the Easton Area Community Center, and the meeting on May 13 specifically hopes to gather more input from West Ward residents.
More meetings are planned be held in other neighborhoods in the city in the near future to gather information from those residents, Easton Planning Director Becky Bradley said.
The Comprehensive Plan rewrite process will continue over the next two years, with a projected 2015 adoption of a new plan, she added.
Public participation, along with data review, will guide the rewrite process, officials have said.
"To date we have spoken to over 400 people and expect that we will have active participation of over a thousand by the end of June," Bradley said.  "All meeting notes will be aggregated and then presented in a large public forum this summer, moving us into the establishment of goals and objectives for the City Comprehensive Plan."
At 8 p.m. on the same evening, Monday, May 13, Envision Lehigh Valley will be holding a virtual town hall meeting for those that missed their meetings last fall but would still like to share their ideas for the region's future.
Using the uStream, participants can watch and talk with planners from Allentown, Bethlehem, Easton, and the Lehigh Valley Planning Commission.
Envision Lehigh Valley says the format will allow members of the public and officials to share information about economic development, answer questions from the virtual audience, and have a two-way conversation online from wherever they are.
Those wishing to be part of the regional process can also submit ideas and concerns by:
  • Tweeting short messages to @EnvisionTheLV
  • Writing questions on the "EnvisionLehighValley" Facebook wall
  • Sending emails to smartgrowth@renewlv.org
For more information about the Envision Lehigh Valley virtual town hall meeting and other upcoming planning events being held by the group, click here.
Lehigh Valley residents are also invited to complete two online surveys to help guide the regional planning process. Click here to view them or take part.

Updated on Monday, May 13 at 3:45 p.m. to correct the time at which the Easton meeting will take place.

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