City forges ahead with comprehensive plan

POULSBO— Project Poulsbo emerged from the shadows Wednesday night as the Poulsbo City Council got a glimpse of the potential vision statement that will form the framework for the city’s future.

Consultants from Seattle-based Berk and Associates announced the results of the two community conversations held earlier this year along with input received through the city’s Web site.

The draft vision statement presented by the firm is: “Poulsbo is a vibrant community distinguished by its unique location on Liberty Bay, access to natural beauty and urban amenities, and historic, small-town character. Environmentally and economically healthy, Poulsbo is an all-seasons city with a functional yet picturesque downtown core that connects the City’s neighborhoods and communities. The Citizens of Poulsbo are civically engaged, local government responds to public needs, and neighbors work collaboratively to continually improve quality of life.”

“The public provided the forms and the council poured the cement,” Councilman Ed Stern said of the draft vision statement, guiding principles and key goals.

Those elements provide the broad framework for the rest of the detail work on the city’s comprehensive plan, Stern said.

“We got the public input and we refined it,” he said, adding the council’s task is to ensure the public’s input fits within the legal context set by the state’s Growth Management Act.

However, that statement will have changed based on the feedback received from council members, consultant Meghann Glavin said.

“We took all the documents and input we’ve received so far and put them into a vision statement and key goals for the comprehensive plan,” Glavin said.

Along with making the changes requested by the council, the technical components of the plan including stormwater, sewer, water and transportation comprehensive plans will be completed during the remainder of the summer before a draft comprehensive plan is presented to the public in the fall, she said.

“There will be lots of public meetings and a lot of opportunities for public input,” Glavin said. “The more the better.”

Planning Director Barry Berezowsky said the council’s input Wednesday night lays the foundation for the next phase of the city’s comprehensive plan update.

“We will mold that into a draft vision statement, seven guiding principles and key goals for the various aspects,” Berezowsky said.

Each component of the city’s comprehensive plan must be linked to the requirements of the state’s GMA, he said.

The next public meetings on the updated plan are scheduled to begin in November, when the public will be able to comment on the latest draft in its entirety, Berezowsky said.

But that doesn’t mean the public input period is over, Glavin said. Anyone wishing to provide their opinions can go to the city’s Web site, and click on the Project Poulsbo link to do so.

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