That Vision Thing

An important part of a city council’s responsibility is identifying, evaluating and pursuing (when appropriate) strategic goals for its community. In the past in San Carlos these have included things like revitalizing Laurel Street and building the library. These kinds of projects are big enough that they often get completed beyond the term of the Council members who initiate them. But they’re central to defining what “The City of Good Living” will be in the future.

Today the Council met for one of its semi-annual strategic governance team meetings (governance team means the Council, the City Manager, and the City Attorney). It was the third one I’ve participated in, and I have to say it was the best one so far. In fact, it was also the first one where we defined initiatives which will address significant, long-standing issues and pursue some significant opportunities. They included (in no particular order):

  • Improving access to and from Highway 101
  • Studying the City’s housing stock to see if there are ways to expand and diversify it
  • Identify community desires for improved/increased recreational assets and find ways to provide them
  • Enhance our economic development efforts
  • Review our general plan and fine-tune our ordinances and codes to support its goals and priorities

How these will be pursued will vary. In all cases there will be plenty of opportunity for community input. Several of the items will likely involve substantial public dialog so we can be sure the community’s needs and desires are thoroughly defined.

They won’t be done in the next few months. Or even in the next year or two.

But as someone who ran for the Council in order to see us engage on just these kinds of issues (you may recognize several of these as key topics of my campaign), I am very pleased we’re beginning to move.

We’ll always have challenges to address, events that we’ll have to react to. But you build the future by having a plan. And you create a plan by discussing, defining and prioritizing your dreams.

Today the Council committed itself to doing just that.

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