With 20 Crothersville area residents attending the initial workshop to formulate a comprehensive plan for the community last Monday, March 18, over 20 ideas of where to begin were proposed.
The workshop served as a first step in the fact-finding effort for the comprehensive plan, which will serve as a guide for land use, physical improvement and development while also being used as a guide for future decision making.
“With a comprehensive plan in place it can lead to additional government funding for your projects later down the road,” said Dan Gardner of Houseal Lavigne Associates, a consulting company that focus on community planning, urban design who are the facilitators for the community planning project.
Gardner told the group that the Monday meeting held at Immanuel United Church of Christ was the first of at least four community meetings that will cover a nine-month long process to give birth to Crothersville Community Plan.
Daniel Kovert, who grew up in Crothersville, and works as a civil engineer for Stephen J. Christian and Associates, Indianapolis, is helping to coordinate the local planning effort.
Local residents were first asked to come up with five priorities the community needed. When that list was finished about 20 mutual concerns were revealed including: the number of vacant properties, lack of community identity, sidewalk maintenance, appearance of the downtown area, gateway of the community from the north and south interstates, more business in town town park quality, absentee landlords, street repair, school system growth, lack of medical facilities, citizen pride , water utility improvement and storm water drainage.
Once the large list was put on paper, residents were asked to list their top three concerns from that list. From that about five top isses were distilled.
The highest concern is the appearance of downtown Crothersville along US 31, followed by water utility improvements, sewer and storm water drainage improvements, school growth and improving citizen pride.
Gardner said creating the plan will involve a number of avenues in addition to public meetings for residents to voice their opinions, including a website where they can add comments and even highlight areas on maps of the community. The website, hlplanning.com/crothersville, should be available sometime in April.