Understanding priorities of local stakeholders key to successful planning study
As part of the Grays Harbor Council of Governments’ U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Brownfield Grant, our planners and environmental team completed an area-wide plan for Downtown Elma to define the community’s vision and create strategies that support economic development, property reuse, and area revitalization.
We conducted a property inventory to identify brownfields and parcels with near-term redevelopment potential along with an existing conditions analysis, which included demographics, mobility and circulation, land use patterns, and zoning requirements. As part of our planning process, we conducted a stakeholder engagement plan that included a working group and a community survey. Using the engagement feedback, we produced conceptual site plans for underutilized parcels in the Downtown core that indicate reuse opportunities and redevelopment potential.
The study identified several strategies for Downtown Elma. These included creating a festival plaza and town square, defining future roadway projects, refining zoning/development standards, and designating over 10 sites for future mixed-use redevelopment.
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