Decatur Next

Decatur Diary | September 29, 2010

Squaring Up Some of Our
Round Table Issues

Wondering what happens next with Decatur’s strategic planning process? It’s time to get schooled.

Introducing Community Academy, four 2-hour sessions where residents, city staff and members of our consultant team will examine some of our big round table goals with an eye towards implementation. That means stepping outside the comfort of open-ended brainstorming and into the slightly harsher glare of the real world.

Simply put, not everything is cut and dried. Some of our round table goals are in conflict with others and, while it’s natural to want it all, we know choices will have to be made. Choices balancing walkability and bikeability with traffic management, for instance. Or the desire for housing at all stages of life, even though getting there may involve downtown density or backyard accessory dwellings.

Furthermore, inherent in some of these questions are potential tax impacts which, among other things, determine whether some folks can move to or stay in Decatur. Or how well funded our school system is. Do we embrace a more dynamic downtown if commercial and/or residential development is a stepping stone to greater affordability, better services or reduced taxes? And speaking of downtown, what are the economics of Main Street retail? Are we attractive to the kinds of businesses we’d like to see established here? If not, what changes would need to be made?

Using real-world case studies and scenarios, we’ll explore the benefits and trade-offs associated with some of our ideas, then work together towards the tough choices. Please join us at one or more of the following sessions:

Going Mobile • Tuesday, October 5
Managing Transportation Choices

Decatur For Life • Monday, October 25
Aging in Place, Affordability, Diversity

The New Main Street • Thursday, November 4
Economics of the Complete Community

Getting the Love We Want • Wednesday, November 17
Understanding Development Issues

All sessions will be held at the Decatur Holiday Inn Conference Center from 7-9pm. If you’re planning on coming, please RSVP at 678.553.6584 so we can ensure sufficient staff and facilitators. For the Community Academy flyer, click here (160kb .pdf).

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