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From: Herb Rubin
Category: General Discussion
Date: 22 Oct 2002
Time: 22:03:18 -0400
Remote Name: 184.108.40.206
I have a big question: Plan Commission members have been instructed in no uncertain terms that concerns with quality of construction are not their purview, so why should they take the trip.
Now, if you were demonstrating the overall design and layout I could understand, but the design and layout of a 100-150 unit development is totally different than that of a 900 unit development.
The trip sounds fun, but from my perspective as a plan commission member I'm not sure what would be learned. Aesthetically I like the new urbanism, technically I am not competent to judge construction standards, and seeing a 150 house complex in Normal does not answer my core concerns on what 900 homes (plus I suspect more, as rumors abound that adjacent properties are already under play for future developments)would do to DeKalb.
Learning about construction standards and even aesthetics does not answer the core questions:
> (a) Does DeKalb need 900 more homes? > (b) How could the school district that is already pressed handle the equivalent of a new grade school. How do you claim to be building a walking community when the school board has announced it will have to bus the grade school children?
> (c) What would development in that quadrant imply for the adjacent land; I've heard rumors that adjacent land is already under preliminary discussion for development. We're not just talking 900 homes but many, many more
> (d) What about the incredible transportation impact
> (e) And, finally, the preliminary plan as shown simply does not integrate itself into the rest of the city; it needs to be tightly connected to both the university and to the Pappas subdivision so it's commercial core would gain a walking market and so those living in the complex would have ease of access to the university thanks for the invite and I am curious but I'll be out of town at professional meeting.
Frankly, I think you are trying to direct the conversation in ways that it need not go; concerns are not about building standards but about financial, social, and development impact. . If the professionals at city hall tell us that the building standards are fine, I'm sure most of us will buy off on that. If they tell us they are not fine, I hope the city council will take appropriate actions. But whether or not the building standards are fine, does not speak to the questions of growth and growth impact. That's the nub of the problem.
By arranging this trip, you are spending even more effort combating union claims when you should be addressing questions on the appropriateness of the growth.