Monday, March 25, 2013

Lee County's online Horizon 2035 "Town Hall" adds land use element for public comment

Walking, Riding & Rolling: Transportation Element

This week the land use element was added to the online "Town Hall" interactive website for public comment.  It's up to YOU to become part of this exciting interactive community conversation!

New Horizon 2035
A new vision of Lee County in 2035 - an economically and environmentally desirable place to live, work and visit - was crafted through an extensive community planning effort that included over 40 public workshops. Now, it’s time to revise Lee County’s growth management plans to bring that vision of a Livable Lee to reality. The most important changes to the Lee Plan are highlighted here. Will they get us to our vision? Here’s your chance for a final “thumbs up” – or a last-minute tweak of the elements as we present them over the next few months.
 Designing the Future: Land Use
The Future Land Use Element is the foundation for the entire comprehensive plan. Future development, community character, economic development, environmental protection, housing, and transportation all come together in the Future Land Use Element. In it, you will find the big picture – with color maps included – showing us where Lee County is headed and how we will get there. 

Whether you live in an urban, suburban or rural area in Lee County, you should care about this element. How Lee County continues to grow and develop will affect us now and will have an impact on our children and future generations. Will we have a strong economy? Will we have strong neighborhoods? Will we have transportation choices, clean water and other services for the future? This element answers these questions and ties together strategies for future growth for coping with the challenges we will face today, tomorrow and into the 2035 horizon. 

There is a lot that is new. The Future Land Use Element has been restructured to better coordinate what we are trying to accomplish in the new vision – including livability, strong connections, community character, and sustainability. Policies are strengthened to better promote more mixed-use, more efficient development, and more transportation options. There are policies to promote the right development in the right place, at the right time. We are trying to reinforce what it means to be an urban, suburban and a rural place – all while protecting our natural environment. Policies for specific communities – such as Lehigh Acres and Estero – have been relocated to the “Communities Element.” Lastly, this element has been revamped based on changes to other elements including transportation, community facilities, housing, conservation, and the county’s new vision.

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