City Beat March 2022

by Don Reynolds, City Manager
As published in the March issue of the Mission Village Voice

Two months into 2022, and the City's work is rolling full steam ahead. The roundabout at First and Lavagnino will be completed in March; Franklin Park will be 50% built, and the new restrooms at Verutti Park are scheduled to arrive by the end of March. The City will initiate three ambitious community-engagement planning activities in late February and March with conversations around the City's Sphere of Influence and potential growth within that sphere of influence across State Highway 156.

Woven in between these community conversations will be the development of an integrated cultural bike and walking trail to connect all of the public amenities in and around the City (otherwise known as an Active Transportation Plan). There will be many opportunities to have your voice heard especially around sensitive topics like managing the City's growth, balanced with new housing, and jobs. Join us by survey, by written feedback and in person. Join us on walking tours and working in small groups called "design charrettes." A design charrette is a fun, creative way to work with your fellow community members using pens and markers and a large aerial photo-map of the city, drawing and creating its future, the way you want to see it.

At the February 15, 2022 City Council meeting, the status of the City's Strategic Plan ("Item 7A") was shared in the staff report that is easy to find here at the City's website:

This is the third year the City Council has used this Strategic Plan to guide its budget process. In report 7A, staff reviewed the status of the three big initiatives launched this year. $100,000 was budgeted for each of these three focus areas: Sphere of Influence study and General Plan update (referenced above); Third Street Master Plan, and Public Safety. The Public Safety Ad-Hoc Committee was established last July and began meeting in August of 2021. The Third Street Master plan will evolve through the recently established Economic Development Citizen's Advisory Committee (EDCAC). It suggests ways these focus areas may need additional support and begins to explore new ideas for the next Fiscal Year that begins July 1, 2022.

The report looks at the quality of life in our city and the opportunity to expand recreation and leisure for teens and seniors. The City is making improvements to the Community Hall so it can be used for more social gatherings that my feature senior programs. The City and School District are developing a detailed plan to share the San Juan School recreational amenities when school is not in session. The staff report considers a part-time or full-time Recreation Coordinator position to tie all of this work together.

The City discussion around its new Strategic Plan will occur in "Zoom format" at 6 pm Tuesday,  March 8, 2022. The link will be posted on the City's website. This is your opportunity to participate in the City's future. Spring is on its way, and the City is poised to blossom this summer! Come join us.