Archive for Wednesday, March 5, 2008

With eye to future, council discusses policies

March 5, 2008

The Basehor City Council spent much of Monday night discussing policy plans, which will help determine the future look and feel of the city.

City Administrator Carl Slaugh discussed the progress of the city's five-year capital improvement plan, which lists and prioritizes projected improvements involving community facilities, transportation, public utilities and recreation and leisure. Projected cost and year for each project were also displayed.

The transportation category was by far the largest, with about 12 projects listed. The 150th Street improvement from Craig Street to Parallel Road, which is in the planning stage, is listed as the top priority on the list. Slaugh said the street projects probably would be the category to experience the most changes throughout the years.

"As we get more information on street projects, we'll add those," Slaugh said. "At least it gives us a little better idea of what we have over the years to work with on street projects."

The other categories are pretty much set, Slaugh said. The wastewater treatment plant expansion assumes priority in the public utilities category, while the two trail projects, Tomahawk Valley and Basehor Elementary School to Basehor City Park were at the top of the recreation and leisure list. Those two trail projects have been submitted as grant proposals to the Kansas Department of Transportation.

"In community facilities this year, we will plan to make a proposal to improve the parking lot in back of this building," Slaugh said, referring to Basehor City Hall.

The parking lot is connected the Basehor Police Department, and improvements will include paving and building a retaining wall. The next project on the list is to extend the sidewalk around the building.

The capital improvement plan will be updated with detailed descriptions of each project and brought back to the council for approval at a later date. Once complete, Slaugh said, it will be like the city's Comprehensive Plan subject to change and revisited annually.

Other documents discussed included the Annexation Plan and the Comprehensive Plan.

A subcommittee of the Planning Commission along with Planning Director Dustin Smith, put together the Annexation Plan, which includes property the city expects to annex in the next five years.

The city must evaluate each property and decide if it meets at least one of the five objectives outlined in the plan before annexation. The objectives cover factors such as direction of growth and providing more "straight and harmonious" city boundaries.

The council approved the Annexation Plan, 5-0.

The council also approved, 5-0, an ordinance that amends the Comprehensive Plan to include a more detailed description of street and transportation plans.

Smith provided a map of what was discussed during the last Planning Commission meeting to council members.

"The supporting policy language is that this street plan would encourage no less than eight streets per mile to connect to the major arterial streets," Smith said.

This guideline, he said, would increase and improve traffic circulation in the city. Many of the new streets shown on the plan already have received preliminary approval, such as those associated with the Basehor City Center project, he said.

Smith reminded council members that the Comprehensive Plan, along with the addition to the transportation element within the plan, is a guide for developers. Streets may not lay out exactly as shown on the map, but developers will have a better understanding of what the city is looking for when creating their plans, and the city will have a guideline to follow when evaluating developer's plans, he said.

In other action Monday night, the council:

¢ Approved, 5-0, the renewal of the property and liability insurance policy for the city of Basehor.

¢ Denied, 5-0, a request from a resident for a refund on their sewer bill.

¢ Approved, 5-0, an expenditure up to $4,500 for tree trimming along streets in the established subdivisions in Basehor.

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