Blueprint II Principles

As part of the overall work program for Blueprint II, GVMC staff has been collecting various sets of regional principles, practices and indicators for inclusion into a report to be called "Standards for Regional Development". One of the primary inputs intended for that study included the original Metropolitan Development Blueprint (MDB) document.

Since the creation of the original MDB document in 1994, there has been a movement of persons, organizations and institutions, (locally and nationally), dedicating themselves to regional and community development issues. This movement has led to an apparent expansion on many of the original MDB findings and the GVMC Blueprint Committee has found the need to "re-examine" and codify the principles, goals and standards to which we are now applying ourselves.

As a starting point for this process, the Blueprint Committee has analyzed the Blueprint strategies matrix, the GVMC City-Township Cooperation Committee "Points of Agreement", and other recent compilations of worthy regional principles and goals. After months of discussion and further analysis, the Blueprint Committee has adopted the following list of Blueprint II Principles. These "principles" will be a component of the "Standards for Regional Development" document currently programmed to be completed as a part of the Blueprint II sub-regional planning process.

Land Use Patterns

  • Promote regional settlement patterns in our metropolitan area to better integrate development with existing urbanized areas and to cultivate the unique qualities of community places and neighborhoods.

  • Involve regional planning entities or cooperative coordinating municipal associations in decision-making about significant land uses affecting broad settlement patterns.

  • Promote land use patterns that most efficiently use existing public infrastructure and community resources without diminishing the social, economic and cultural values of existing residential settlements and neighborhoods.

  • Promote development patterns that help maintain the viable long-term use of working open lands such as agriculture and forestry.

Conservation

  • Identify and protect those natural areas in our metropolitan region which enhance the quality of our air, water and habitat for wildlife.

  • Establish a metro-wide system of environmental corridors, greenways, or landscapes, which establish convenient, non-destructive public use of our natural environment including bikeways, recreation areas, nature walks, and scenic preserves.

  • Promote the cleanup and reuse of vacant and under-utilized buildings and sites served with public utilities.

Citizen Involvement

  • Facilitate the focused involvement of local citizens, municipal officials, regional authorities and recognized experts to identify, design and maintain desirable, attractive and stable neighborhoods.

  • Make up-to-date information on regional development and planning widely available over a variety of media including pamphlets, books, classes, presentations, broadcast, and Internet.

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Public Utility Infrastructure

  • Plan and develop timely, orderly and efficient arrangements of public facilities and services that reinforce local land use plans developed within a regional framework or perspective.

  • Promote a single regional sewer, water and stormwater authority charged with integrating and equitably paying for the provision of these services within regionally adopted patterns of land use.

  • Utility development and management should emphasize resource conservation while assuring environmental safety from contamination.

Community Design

Promote the adoption of community design standards by local planning entities that improve the use and enjoyment of urban and community environments.
  • Through focused community involvement in the design process, plan neighborhoods, cities and community centers which exhibit:
    • A sense of place and community.
    • Safety and less crime.
    • Broad diversity of social and economic status.
    • Respect for cultural and natural heritage.
    • Educational opportunities and success.
    • Buildings and routes scaled to human needs for personal access, safety and aesthetic comfort.
    • Easy access to natural areas.
    • Protection of environmentally sensitive areas.

Cooperation & Coordination

  • Promote inter-jurisdictional, regional cooperation and collaboration among communities to work towards quality, efficient, equitable, cost effective and long- term delivery of government services to all residents throughout the region.

  • Further enhance mechanisms for encouraging inter-governmental cooperation between and among federal, state and local jurisdictions with increased emphasis on inter-local activities.

Equity & Property Rights

  • Strive to protect the interest of all landowners from poor regional development design, inefficient and costly use of land resources, unbalanced allocation of regional public resources and unnecessarily restrictive regulation.

  • The costs and benefits of regional services and development should be shared in an equitable manner and on a regional basis.

Transportation

  • Link land use decision-making and the provision of transportation facilities so as to encourage compact livable communities.

  • Develop a system of transportation which:
    • Maintains or improves the level of service for the current system of streets and thoroughfares
    • Supports local land use patterns and regional activity centers as outlined in a regional framework plan
    • Incorporates where possible mass transit, bicycling and pedestrian opportunities
    • Minimizes negative environmental impact

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