Public Comprehensive Plan Meeting Is Today

Residents of Moundsville are encouraged to give their input on the future direction of the city at a Comprehensive Plan Open House Workshop from 6-8 p.m. today at the Moundsville Training Center, located in the former West Virginia Penitentiary.

Representatives from the Land Use and Sustainable Development Law Clinic at West Virginia University College of law have been working with city officials for several months as the city develops a comprehensive plan on how to improve Moundsville. Issues such as economic development, land use, housing and transportation will be discussed. Jesse Richardson, lead land use attorney at WVU College of Law, said public input is vital for the beginnings stages of drafting the plan.

“We would really like to see as many people come out as possible,” Richardson said. “Everybody is welcome. Come whenever you want; we just want to hear your thoughts and concerns.”

Richardson said there will be four stations residents can visit and give input. A prioritization station will present the goals and objectives for the city as determined by the WVU Public Administration Department, which citizens can rank as a first or second priority. Some suggestions presented will include taking advantage of the natural gas industry boom cycle, increasing regional tourism, balancing big box and small retail and revitalizing the historic district.

Two stations will be dedicated to “strengths and opportunities” as well as “weaknesses and threats,” which will be gathered on a flip chart. A mapping station will show residents the existing land uses and will gather input on future land uses in the next 10 to 15 years.

Richardson said the next step will be to begin writing chapters of the comprehensive plan to present to the public. He estimated the plan would take about a year to write.

“The community is the leader in this,” Richardson said. “We take directions from the community, so we want to find out what they want and put it into a legally feasible plan.”