Mayor's Message By Ken Carlson
Mar 03, 2019 05:05PM
● By Ken Carlson
Mayor Ken Carlson
This will be a busy year. As the excitement builds for the construction of the new library, questions about the future of Pleasant Hill are being asked. The library project is nearing the end of the design phase and will be moving onto the construction bidding process and groundbreaking. But what of the rest of Pleasant Hill? How will we as a community come together and plan for our future?
This year we will begin our General Plan Update, and the council has already appointed a subcommittee to begin the work. The General Plan is the “blueprint” for our community and is required to address several key points for land use, housing, transportation, and much more. We can determine the look, feel, and economic vitality of our community.
City staff and the subcommittee began with searching for the right consulting group to lead the process. Councilmember Noack and I serve on the subcommittee and knew the consultant group had to understand Pleasant Hill and our community. With our experience in the planning process for the new library, we know we need a team of dedicated individuals who will engage our citizens and hear their ideas and concerns, as well as inform and educate everyone. We think we have found the right match for Pleasant Hill and will be bringing a recommendation to the full council very soon.
Community engagement in the General Plan process is vital. Our consulting team will be hosting workshops, pop-ups, study sessions, and surveys throughout the process. There will be a dedicated website for information, tracking the plan, and participation. I encourage everyone to participate.
I just wanted to take a few moments and try and spark everyone’s interest in playing a part in planning the future of Pleasant Hill. So many pieces of the plan overlap and face challenges based on the region we live in and, more specifically, from Sacramento. Here are just a few of the questions/concerns that we face as we prepare the General Plan. I hope they will give you motivation to be a part of this process and share all your ideas as we go forward.
How can we manage the growth of Pleasant Hill while enhancing our “small-town” feel and character? We must remain relevant and sustainable as we go forward but continue to maintain the character of our city. Can that character help us strengthen and grow our retail and commercial community?
The city faces the challenge of demands and obligations for housing, new state laws, and mandates that will impact us. How can we meet those demands and face the challenges they may bring when it comes to maintaining our character yet meet the mandates? There are also efforts in the region and Sacramento which could lessen our local control of many aspects of development.
The General Plan truly is the blueprint for our city for the next decade or so. I would encourage all our community members, from residents to our businesses, to be involved in our future. This is an opportunity to share ideas about the look and feel of Pleasant Hill, from housing and traffic concerns to environmental issues. I look forward to working with all of you on the future of Pleasant Hill.