City staff and several consulting firms will use the next 18 months to draft a new vision for Alhambra. The General Plan, a policy document addressing land use, public safety, transportation, and more will be updated at the end of this process.
Joe Power of Rincon Consultants, the lead advisers for the project, explained at Monday's City Council meeting that a General Plan is "the city’s constitution or the blueprint for future development decisions involving a whole range of topics—everything that the city wants to do or wants to be over the next 20-30 years.” Power said they will be addressing Alhambrans’ values and economic goals in the updated plan. By State law, a General Plan must address housing, land use, transportation, conservation of natural resources, exposure to noise, public parks and recreational goals, and all potential safety issues.
Much of the next 18 months will deal with research and community outreach, said Power. Rincon Consultants will be conducting workshops with Alhambra government and residents, hosting interviews with community members, surveying 400 Alhambrans over the phone, and attending public events like the Eco Fair and 710 Day to receive input. Rincon has also enlisted the help of other firms that specialize in economics, transportation, and multilingual outreach. A draft of the plan will go through a public comment period before it is sent to the City Council, where it will be voted on for approval.
Director of Development Tara Schultz says a new General Plan is needed. “Over time, things have changed. Technology has changed, needs of the city has changed, the community’s desires have changed on what we need to do, and we need to make to sure our General Plan reflects that,” Schultz said during the meeting. Power added that the plan will be adaptable to changes in the City.
Residents' first opportunity for input will be at the City’s Eco Fair, Saturday May 2 12-4:00pm at 500 N. Palm Ave., Alhambra Park. The first community meeting on the plan will be hosted on May 20, 7pm at Alhambra Civic Center Library.
City Council usually meets every second and fourth Monday of the month on the second floor of City Hall: 111 S. First St., Alhambra, Calif., 91801. The next meeting will be on May 11 at 5:30 p.m.