New Hanover County citizens have identified their most pressing issues with local transportation, health, safety and environment—and brainstormed a range of solutions. It’s all part of the Comprehensive Plan to address the future of local land use, resources, infrastructure, and development. The plan—which depends on six themed citizen committees--launched in February. And this week, the committees will begin ranking these recommendations in order of feasibility and priority.
County planners describe the most recent round of committee meetings as a hyper-local TED Conference, with citizens presenting plans that have benefited other counties and cities. Specific ideas some have voluntarily posted on the county website range from charging more for regular waste collection to allow for free recycling, to building a public/private sports facility, and to instituting safeguards against retail price markups. Despite all this diversity, Comprehensive Plan manager Jennifer Rigby notes that several consistent messages have emerged.
"Individuals do want for our community to be more pedestrian- and bicycle-friendly. Individuals want us to look at our community and our built environment as it relates to health—and as it relates to equity. As far as our economy, everyone kind of rallies around the idea that, you know, we want more jobs, and want to build on the great work that the Garner Study has put forth."
Rigby says the county planners are busy ranking all recommendations in terms of short- and long-term importance.
*** Click here to access some of these recommendations.
****The next and third round of Plan NHC theme committee meetings take place between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. on the following dates:
June 4th Harmony with Nature
June 5th Responsible Regionalism
June 9th Interwoven Equity
June 10th Healthy Community
June 12th Resilient Economy
June 23rd Livable Built Environment