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Tue, Sep 23, 2014 12:16 AM
Issue of September 17, 2014
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Laconia proposal goes to plan commission


August 06, 2014 | 09:30 AM

Members of the steering committee, as well as town residents, got a look at the final draft of the proposed comprehensive plan for Laconia.

It's a project the Laconia Town Council has been working on since December.

"Our long process is getting close to the finish, and I'm pretty excited," Tom Huckaby, president of the Laconia Town Council, said. "I'm feeling good about the way things are turning out."

Tomorrow night (Thursday), the document will be presented to the Harrison County Advisory Plan Commission during its meeting set to begin at 7:30 at the Government Center in south Corydon. Once approved by the plan commission, the document then will be presented to the Harrison County Board of Commissioners for its OK.

"You guys have been an extremely involved community," Amy Williams, with Taylor Siefker Williams design group, said at a meeting July 21 in Laconia's community center. "It says a lot about your commitment."

The design group, which has offices in Louisville and Indianapolis, has facilitated workshops leading up to the final draft of the comprehensive plan. A steering committee, comprised of a cross section of town residents and others, spearheaded the project, and the public was invited to give input on more than one occasion.

"There is a comprehensive plan for the county," Williams said. "It just doesn't zone in on Laconia very much."

Laconia's plan, which is to serve as a foundation for land-use decisions for the next 20 or so years, is being developed with a $40,000 grant from the Community Development Block Grant program (the town was required to provide $4,445 for a match).

Williams told interested persons that the plan "won't solve all those little problems" but will serve as a "good road map" for decisions.

The final draft presented last month includes five goals that address providing quality housing, preserving and enhancing the history and rural character of the town, infrastructure improvements, supporting existing businesses and community development and providing entertainment options for all ages.

The document includes strategies for meeting each goal with a suggested timeline — from immediate to short-term to mid-term to long-term — of when those strategies could be implemented.

"Some of these things you're already doing," Williams told steering committee members and other town residents last month. "That's wonderful."

She also cautioned that everyone needs to be "flexible" as the comprehensive plan is implemented.

The document also will include information about the process it took to be developed. "We want to give you a great document," Williams told the townspeople. "We want you to use this document."

Twitter: @TCD_joann

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