This process, although not totally unique to Coopersville or the generic planning process, reminds me of the metaphor “connecting-the-dots.” As most of us know, connecting-the-dots is an exercise of finding or associating one idea or event with another. The usual reason this exercise is practiced is to reveal the “big-picture” of an idea or event, or to bring meaning to an unknown. But before one can connect-the-dots, as author, actress and musician Amanda Palmer stated, “We can only connect the dots that we can collect.” The more dots we can collect, the better or the higher definition of the big picture we can create and thus invite action to be taken.
All day and into Monday night city staff, residents and non-residents, business owners, and consultants were collecting dots; lots of dots. Dots about recreation…dots about downtown…dots about sidewalks…dots about neighborhoods…dots about development…dots about signage…dots about housing…dots about transportation…dots about EVERYTHING. In the next few weeks and months, all of the dots collected will be part of the connect-the-dots exercise. This will be an exciting time as each dot is metaphorically connected to another dot over and over again. In time an image will begin to reveal itself and that image will be a new Master Plan for the City of Coopersville. It will guide the city, the community, as we grow and as we manage development while at the same time enhancing the unique character of this special place. Jonathan Seyferth and I will update this process to you in the coming months as new information becomes available.
We have a lengthy agenda which includes two ordinance related items, discussion on the proposed WWTP Upgrade Phase II, and the usual action to pay invoices. Have a great weekend and take advantage of winter’s reprieve if you so desire. Be safe out there!
Yes, it’s that time of the year when the anticipation of bringing everyone together for great food, excellent conversation, and the chance to celebrate all that is positive about Coopersville gathers momentum. This year the event will be a bit earlier in the year than in the past, March 9, 2017 at 6:00 PM. We’ve already had over 60 RSVPs to date and we would be most pleased to receive yours as well. Tickets and table sponsorships are available at http://tinyurl.com/CelebrateCoops2017. As always, the silent auction is looking for donations to raise money for NEO Forum. More information will be forthcoming as we inch closer to the 9th. Please mark this date on your calendars, it’s always a special event!
March 18, 2017 is the scheduled date for the yearly Community Expo sponsored/organized by the Coopersville Area Chamber of Commerce. Most years, the city rents a booth with our elected officials attending along with available staff to answer questions and provide information concerning projects, recreation opportunities and other related topics. As the date approaches more details will be provided by Anisa or myself.
Water Project Phase I – REPEAT
Just before the holidays, the City of Coopersville, Allendale Township, Polkton Township, and Ottawa County met to essentially re-establish where the city stands on this project. Allendale Township has a new supervisor so part of the meeting was also to make sure everyone was up to speed and to compare notes on any pending revisions to the original project. FYI, the meeting was positive and all parties appear to be in unison again.
We are to meet again soon once the city determines exactly the direction they want to pursue on the Water Project – Phase I. What I mean by this is that we have to determine what level of “risk” long-term we want to assume financially. The city needs a $12 million upgrade to its water system to prepare for the future and to increase reliability and redundancy to the current system. A $12 million upgrade also requires firm commitments from its largest water customers.
A lessor option at $5-6 million can provide basic improvements and less risk financially but does not provide the strong reliability and redundancy assets that the $12 million option provides. And that is the core discussion that is taking place. At this time, my goal and commitment is to have a firm decision made before the third quarter of our fiscal year is reached (March 31, 2017) which also means the UAC will be busy and eventually the council will be requested to make a few substantive and heavy decisions.