Friday, September 22, 2006

Planners Endorse East Third, Richmond Plan

The Planning Board Thursday (Sept. 21, 2006) approved a redevelopment plan for Richmond Street that could place high-rise multi-family development on blocks now mostly dominated by dilapidated commercial properties.

Officials said the City Council will meet at 9 a.m. Saturday in City Hall Library to consider the plan. On Monday, (Sept. 18, 2006) the council rejected a resolution and ordinance connected with the plan because Planning Board amendments to the “in need of redevelopment“ study were not given to all council members.

The rationale for the Planning Board vote was that language in the Aug. 23 resolution on the site authorized both the study and the plan.

In past redevelopment processes, council and Planning Board approvals followed a different plan, with weeks or months between the steps.

At the Sept. 18 City Council meeting, Public Works & Urban Development Director Jennifer Wenson Maier defended the simultaneous approvals, saying “I don’t want to hold things up. We’re not doing anything wrong.”

On Sept. 21, the Planning Board made several amendments to the redevelopment plan. The plan will be presented to the council Saturday with the changes.

It is not clear that the meeting Saturday will meet the 48-hour notice for special meetings, having been announced late Wednesday.

--Bernice Paglia


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