Friday, August 15, 2008

New Land Use & Transportation Plan Being Reviewed by P&Z Board

Updated 9/15/08:
Morrisville is updating it long term Land Use and Transportation Plans (LUTP). The Town is determining how our community should grow and where transportation improvements should occur during the next 35 years. These plans will impact how you live, work, shop, and travel.

At the August 14th Open House and Public Hearing, the LUTP was presented to the Planning & Zoning Board. A number of citizens voiced concern with the Plan’s key recommendations.

The Plan's Public Workshops and Focus Groups provided considerable opportunity for citizens to communicate. And they did -- in large numbers. However, does the LUTP truly reflect what citizens said?

The Plan's Advisory Committee was a cross-section of the community and proved to be most knowledgeable on the subject. Is the consensus of the Committee members reflected in the Plan?

Unfortunately, the answers to both these questions raise some concern. Did the Town miss a golden opportunity to develop a Land Use and Transportation Plan that is truly reflective of the citizens of Morrisville?

Here are a few examples:

Citizens had overwhelming identified NC 54 as THE major issue for the Town. Unless this issue is dealt with, the increasing of traffic congestion will limit future growth. Citizens and Committee members wanted a detailed plan for needed improvements to NC 54. In the initial drafts, the Plan only cited NC 54 as a “problem.” Following strong prodding by the Advisory Committee, a conceptualization of what NC 54 should look like appeared in the recent Plan drafts. However, the practicality of what is proposed for NC 54 was never discussed by the Committee or presented to the public for consideration. Also, NC54 improvements should have been the KEY recommendation in the written Transportation Plan.

The most recent cost estimate for the Crabtree Crossing Extension is at least 11 million dollars. 2,000 additional autos will feed into a limited travel street in a prime residential neighborhood. At considerable additional expense, there would be need to install traffic deterring measures. Citizens overwhelming voiced opposition to this road extension. It SHOULD NOT be included in the Plan.

Public consensus was for the Land Use Plan to concentrate on enhancing Morrisville as an attractive residential community. Adding higher density land use is like throwing gasoline on a fire. The Town’s citizens clearly stated: “No more large development” and “Slow down growth!”

The expanded area surrounding Park West Village consists of predominately single family homes (Preston, Weston Estates, etc). It is one of the Triangle’s prime residential areas. There was NO public support for ADDITIONAL Regional Activity Centers at this location. This proposal comes SOLELY from the Town Staff and the Consultant.

There is still time for the Planning & Zoning Board as well as the Town Council to make certain that the Land Use & Transportation Plan is what citizens asked for!

REVISED Meeting Schedule. All at Town Hall.

10/9/08 P&Z Board – 3rd Briefing & Possible Recommendation

11/12/08 Town Council – Open House & 1st Briefing

11/24/08 Town Council – Public Hearing

12/9/08 Town Council – 2nd Briefing

12/17/08 Town Council – Possible Decision

Citizens may view the proposed Land Use and Transportation Plans in three ways:

1 - DOWNLOAD in low-resolution PDF files from:
2008 Land Use & Transportation Plans

2 - PICK UP a CD-ROM with high-resolution PDF files from the Morrisville Planning Department

3 - VIEW a printed copy at Morrisville Town Hall

Let your voice be heard at the Town Council Public Hearing on Tuesday, November 24. Citizens are also encouraged to send email to the members of the two Town Boards at:

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