|BG master plan to be updated (2-10-14)|
|Written by HAROLD BROWN, Sentinel City Editor|
|Monday, 10 February 2014 10:47|
Efforts to update Bowling Green's 27-year-old Future Land Use section of the Master Plan will be reported to Bowling Green City Council Feb. 18.
BG Planning Director Heather Sayler Friday morning told directors of the Bowling Green Chamber of Commerce about that report. She encouraged directors and others to share their ideas with her office or by attending meetings of the 18-member steering committee. The next session is Wednesday at 3 p.m. in the City Administrative Services Building.
A full-fledged public meeting will be announced later. The proposed update will eventually go to the City Planning Commission and then to council for review, hearings and approval.
"The steering committee has had some tough discussions. Things are very much in the preliminary stages. We have held some informal conversations with small groups. We are very excited about this. It is very overdue," Sayler said.
She noted that "some very conflicting views" have been offered. For example, some people want to see a Costco and restaurants like an Olive Garden, but at the same time do not want to have the city congested with the traffic those might bring. "Others want to preserve the unique downtown. The question becomes, how do we do all of that?"
Another issue has focused on aging housing stock in the city and how to preserve that or redesign areas of the city. "Some have told us there is not enough quality housing near Bowling Green State University. Too many homes are small, or cut up into apartments. We are hearing this sends people to other communities for housing."
Sayler said in the end not everybody will agree with everything in the plan but the discussion will be wide-ranging.
Sandy Milligan, vice president of the chamber and a member of the steering committee, said the effort is similar to a business developing a strategic plan. "These are huge questions we are asking. This will not be done overnight."
Much of the rest of the monthly chamber meeting was spent with planning for the year, talking about chamber services, and hearing reports of upcoming activities.
Among the activities:
• The annual dinner and awards meeting is tonight at BGSU.
• A special event Wednesday will mark the first anniversary of the new focus for the BGSU Visitor's Center. All are welcome to attend the day-long event.
• Winterfest is Feb. 14-16 with activities all over the community. A schedule of events was published in Thursday's Sentinel-Tribune (page 10) and a story is planned Wednesday. The schedule of events will be repeated in next Thursday's paper.
• Red Cross Fire and Ice, Feb. 15 at the Cla-Zel. Tickets remain available from the Red Cross. The event raised $36,000 last year. Half of the tips from the boots of firefighters who work the event as volunteer bartenders are earmarked for Toledo Fire Station 3.
• For those looking for any sign of Spring, Downtown BG Executive Director Barb Ruland reported the first day for the Farmers Market is May 21.
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