Commission Elects Chairman, Plans for Community Changes
by Reporter | February 5, 2018 1:52 pm
Last Updated: February 6, 2018 at 2:12 am
By: Emily Wachter
On Jan. 25, the Town of Summerton Planning Commission members met in Summerton Town Hall to discuss several expected changes in the community.
During the planning commission’s bi-monthly meetings, the members of the commission typically discuss current and up-and-coming projects that will affect the Summerton community. Currently, these meetings are planned in accordance with the commission members’ schedules. However, the members are working on setting a permanent, consistent date for these meetings. According to the chairpersons of the commission, members of the community are welcome and encouraged to attend these meetings and ask questions or provide opinions on the projects being discussed.
The meeting began with a brief greeting and introduction from Chairman Bryan Hacker, and after calling the meeting to order, he opened conversation about the election of a new head chairman for the Planning Commission. Hacker reminded attendees that these nominations can only be made by members of the Planning Commission and then asked for official nominations. Several chairpersons present at the meeting nominated Richard Felder, who accepted the nomination indefinitely until the completion of two major plans: The Land Use Plan and the Comprehensive Plan.
As the new Chairman for 2018, Felder took over the meeting and said that he wanted to update commission members and the public on the status of the Land Use Plan and the Comprehensive Plan, which have both been ongoing, long-term projects for the community.
The Land Use Plan, according to Felder, will focus on allocating sizes of different lots and land areas for several community-based projects. With this plan, Felder said that the commission hopes to attract new businesses in the Summerton area. In order to for the integration of new businesses to be successful, the planning commission is responsible for studying the different zones of the town and then choosing lots and areas that would be appropriate for different types of businesses, depending on the community’s needs. The commission members several different options but ultimately decided that more research had to be done before they could make any decisions.
Next, the commission members discussed the Comprehensive Plan. Felder said that the Comprehensive Plan has been on the commission’s agenda for almost two years and is a long-term, projection-based project that requires the commission to make plans and form decisions that will affect the landscape of Summerton in the next 10 years. According to Felder, they have an old model of the Comprehensive Plan, and they intend to update the previous plan and apply it to the current and future needs of the community.
“What we want to do with the Comprehensive Plan is basically look toward the future,” Felder said. “We want to project and decide what we think Summerton will look like in 10 years’ time and then make decisions based on that projection.”
Felder ended the event by saying that this meeting was meant to update other members of the commission and the community of how the plans are coming along. He hopes that the next meeting held in February will offer more information for the public.