DPD rep to preview neighborhood plan update proposals at August 20 meeting

Frederica Merrell of the North Beacon Hill Planning Advisory Committee, a group formed to address issues connected with the city’s intended revamp of the North Beacon Hill neighborhood plan, sends this status report regarding the committee:

Last call for innovative proposals for our neighborhood plan update! The City is still proceeding at a rapid pace to complete our update this fall. Our last community meeting with the City is coming up in September (date unannounced yet). If people want to get a general or specific recommendation on any topic in the plan, it needs to get to the City pronto.

A small group of folks from the diligent North Beacon Hill Planning Advisory committee met with Councilmembers Sally Clark and Tim Burgess and Lyle Bicknell (our man in the planning department) to talk about the process and next steps. There was a lot of baffling lack of clarity about dates and next steps. No notes from the last big meeting held in May have been provided to the community. It seems clear that DPD is making it up as they go along and is probably having a really hard time keeping up with their own timeline.

Anyway, one thing that did come out is if people have anything more they want to say, like putting up kiosks, or under-grounding ugly power lines, or doing a business district plan, now is the time. Why would it be good to have the idea documented in our plan update? Items in neighborhood plans have priority for funding when money pots (kinda like honey pots) become available.

I would be happy to pass your ideas on to Lyle verbatim. Or you can send them to him via e-mail. Or you can come visit with him in person at our next important meeting of the North Beacon Hill Planning Advisory Committee on August 20th at El Centro, room 307, 7-9 PM. The meeting is open to all and we have a bigger room than usual courtesy of El Centro.

Lyle has agreed to come to the planning meeting and give us a preview of the ideas that DPD is proposing for our plan update, based on the May meeting. In other words, the general process this time around for getting ideas in our plan is: get your idea to Lyle, he waves a magic City wand over it and transforms in to something (we don’t know what yet) and then it gets presented in September to the community to comment on.

So while the heat is clearing and your brain signal is increasing in strength, put your idea on a piece of paper or e-mail. I will print all blog posts with ideas for Lyle and give them to him on the 20th. Come in person if you make it!

Frederica Merrell
Organizing volunteer
North Beacon Hill Planning Advisory Committee

4 thoughts on “DPD rep to preview neighborhood plan update proposals at August 20 meeting”

  1. What does the neighborhood plan have in it already? Is there a copy of it online somewhere?

  2. Folks, This is a very important time for the Hill…and the tail is wagging the dog here so to speak…

    At the last North Beacon Hill Council meeting city planner Lyle Bicknell had some interesting but contradictory things to share with us…

    1) The plan update is a “roadmap” for Parks and DOT…BUT he also assured us that the update is merely an “addendum to the plan”…

    How can the update be both significant enough to be a roadmap AND “just” an addendum?

    2) He also mentioned that the city hasn’t contacted the primary commercial landowners in two years (!)…

    Really? How do they propose then in a few months to deliver a (realistic) plan that takes in both private and public interests?

    3) He also mentioned that the process this time around (as opposed to the 1999 plan) is more about “stewardship and collaboration” than it was in the past…

    This was taken to mean that it is different now because the old plan was generated at a time when a few interested citizens spent lots and lots and lots of time drafting plans and attending meetings…as well as delivering a vision of a better place i.e. scoping the urban village concept…

    From experiencing first-hand the meetings linked above, this time around it is going to be a more “democratic” process (note quotes) with just a series of town meetings resulting in all constituents asked if they like ice cream…and then getting a choice, chocolate or vanilla…

    This Neighborhood Plan update process is obviously being rushed through…Why, we don’t know.

    Also, this update is significant update because much of the 1999 plan has been done(!)…

    Wow, you visualize a future and ten years later it gets done. Pretty exciting stuff! Where do we go from here???

    Basically this go-round the city is happy to have the new plan be about focus-group consensus, rather all that that messy vision and leadership stuff.

    Real democracy and vision is so old school anyway .

    Anyhow, thank you, thank you Freddy Merrell for taking the time to get Lyle to this meeting previewing real update options from the city early-and-often so we have time to think and react.


    ~Adam Ganz
    2914 19th Ave South
    est. 1994

Comments are closed.