consultants are sandburs

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Flaherty and Collins in the news, in a town that appears to be Springfield, IL, from context, and high-density planning is the news context. Residents in Ramsey should care, given the Faherty history, and the town being in the midst of yet another round of Comp Planning.

The Flaherty item is online here; and deals with Flaherty density lust and grandiose will and conviction; something Ramsey's seen per the massive building full of costly small sized apartment units hung off the Town Center's parking garage.

Comp Planning Questions in Ramsey will include:

1- Whether with the new Armstrong interchange, will that make Armstrong the growth corridor northward, or will plans still focus on a growth corridor along Nowthen Blvd, as per the most recently done Comp Plan to meet Met. Council Comp Plan requirements?

2- Will citizens throughout the town be taxed for another parking ramp and for a community center at Town Center, or will that experiment be written off as "let the developers have their way, density be as the developers choose, but minimize the further dumping of public money into Town Center?"

There may be more, such as does the available aquifer capacity and sustainability support levels of growth Met Council would impose with its made-up projections of regional growth distributions; and where, surprisingly, the last and currently governing Ramsey Comp Plan allotted greater numbers of possible growth absorption in town than Met Council had mandated. Or will we run out of water before we run out of Met Council lust for growth?

Overestimation of growth leads to town comp plans that allow developers to cherry pick among the places where higher density within the town has been designated.

Apparently the wise leaders of Ramsey have a citizen's part of an advisory panel already set, and are adding at least one person from each board and commission, and the EDA presumably, in order to have a large enough committee to make it less efficient and more pliant than a lesser sized body.

In any event, being on the Charter Commission, it appears we will have our annual meeting during the course of which a delegate to the advisory committee shall be named. So far I have come to believe Jim Bendtsen, a Charter Commissioner, might be interested in being that body's rep to the Comp Plan Advisory Committee, and he appears to be an ideal person to add in to leaven the outlooks that might be represented in advising city staff and the council. Another sound choice would be Charter Commission Chair Joe Field, if he has the time and is interested in taking part in the committee effort. Either Jim or Joe would be a good choice. I am unaware of any other person(s) on the commission who would seek the committee spot. There will be a Charter Commission meeting soon, yet at present the date is being finalized by city staff.

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[Note: this is a quickly written post, likely of narrow interest, and proof reading during morning coffee is never fault free. Any reader finding error in the post is invited to submit a corrective comment. Also, I've meant to look again, but readers might help; is Ben Dover sitll perched on his pedestal across the street from City Hall, or has Ben been shuffled into obscurity? It seems one time driving Sunwood I did not see Ben.]

____________UPDATE_____________
Some readers may find interest in nerdwallet.com, here, listing Ramsey in a "top ten," and while it might be a defect in my browser configuration and not their web design, there is the thought that any website that posts multiples of every comment from readers is suspect. In another sense, perhaps the site does comment multiplication because of the value it assigns to each thought which site readers care to add. Value added, as a complement to the theme of the posted commentary?

________FURTHER UPDATE__________
Reader comment is invited: Does the lack of challenge to incumbency evidenced on this city web page mean a general satisfaction with a status quo, or an indifference bred from the horse having already been stolen, so let someone else tend to the tedium of watching that the barn door gets/stays duly locked?

It makes it hard to post much about the city council contests going on this election cycle. Very hard. The upside is having an entire part of the November ballot you can completely ignore.

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