Tricounty News

Comprehensive plan ready for public review

After a process that began a year ago, the City of Kimball is ready to unveil its draft Comprehensive Plan. This is the first-ever Comprehensive Plan done by the city under the guidance of Biko Associates, Inc., a planning consultant firm based in Minneapolis. The Biko team brought considerable experience to the process, as they have done similar work for other cities. Just over a year ago, the Kimball city council appointed a steering committee of fifteen people with Erin Gutwasser and Keith Markwardt as chairs. Other members of the steering committee include Tammy Konz, Mary Johnson, Steve Maus, Cindy Stelten, Jim Unterberger, Kris O'Brien, Leo Wirth, Dianne Robinson, Vern Harris, Sandy Steinmetz, and Jean Matua. A public hearing will be held from 7-8:30 p.m. Monday, Nov. 10 at Kimball City Hall. People will have a chance to voice their opinions and concerns about the plan at this hearing. A copy of the draft Comprehensive Plan is available for advance review at the Kimball Public Library, at Kimball City Hall, and on-line at Part 1 of the draft addresses land use and zoning as well as the principles, goals and policies to guide growth and development in the City of Kimball. Part 2 presents an urban design plan to guide land use organization, appearance, and growth and development phasing. After public comment and testimony on Nov. 10, the steering committee will meet to review testimony and comments by the public. Once the steering committee approves the Comprehensive Plan, they will present it to the Kimball city council for adoption, at which point it becomes law. The Comprehensive Plan as adopted will guide the city to address critical issues such as stormwater runoff reduction and treatment, sewer capacity, industrial development, commercial/retail business development, future housing development, and future recreational trail development. In years to come, it can be reviewed and amended as needed. Developing a Comprehensive Plan to begin with is an important step for Kimball and surrounding residents. Not only will it help shape our future, but it may also be helpful in identifying specific improvement projects and obtaining grant funding for them. Review the Comprehensive Plan for yourself. Contact a member of the steering committee if you have questions. And plan to attend the Nov. 10 public hearing to share with the steering committee and council any concerns you may have. This is the ultimate example of participatory government.