Archive for Wednesday, April 9, 2003

Community Assessment team needs more data

April 9, 2003

Approximately 70 local residents, government leaders and business owners are taking part in the Basehor Community Assessment program.

The Community Assessment teams, split between three separate groups, analyze existing city strengths and determine areas for future improvement.

But although team members have a vast array of experience and opinions, the team needs to hear more from local residWilderson said. "We hope to present our assessment to the Basehor City Council in May, make some revisions and have a final product by June.

"We certainly want to work with the city to accomplish long and short term goals," he added.

The Community Assessment team began the process in February. Since then, the team has splintered into three cells.

They are:

  • Business and economic opportunities: A team assessing the current elements of commercial, retail and industrial businesses in Basehor. The team will also identify potential businesses that could benefit the city.
  • Social environment team: Assess items such as education, health care and recreational programs available in Basehor.
  • Physical environment team: Analyzing the city infrastructure -- streets, utilities and parks -- to see where improvements can be made.

There have yet to be any specific areas targeted for improvement and Wilderson said the team "is still early in the game" as far as definitive plans are concerned.

One avenue the assessment team won't pursue is a community-wide survey, Wilderson said.

After broaching the subject early in the process, team members concluded the survey would be too costly and time consuming.

Which makes resident input all the more valuable, Wilderson said.

"We welcome input from anybody in the community," he said. "We need to assess what is available and what the real needs here, are."ents.

The assessment team met last week and is scheduled for another meeting at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 10, at Basehor City Hall.

"We do certainly welcome anyone from the community that wants to attend Thursday or any additional meetings," team member Chuck Wilderson said.

The Community Assessment program is designed to identify strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and priorities for Kansas communities.

The program is a requirement of PRIDE communities, similar to a city's comprehensive plan, and is updated every five years.

"We're still evaluating those needs and discussing areas we feel like improvements are needed," Wilderson said.

The program is coordinated locally by the Basehor PRIDE and Gold PRIDE organizations. The groups receive help at the state level though the Kansas Department of Commerce and Housing.

Later this summer, the Community Assessment team will compile a report and submit it to the Department of Commerce and Housing.

"Our tentative goal is to kind of wrap everything up by mid-May with a preliminary report,"

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