BBC began the process of creating a new master plan for the Central and Kinsman neighborhoods in 2014. We hired a team of highly competent planning and community engagement experts to help us initiate a comprehensive multi-faceted community outreach strategy aimed at engaging as many residents and stakeholders and collecting as much feedback as possible. Doing so would assist us in developing a new master plan that best represents the interests of stakeholders, incorporates their wishes and desires, and creates the vision for their neighborhood that they would like to be brought into fruition. We ultimately sought to build upon the major achievements that originated from the previous master plan and continue cultivating the positive neighborhood identity of Kinsman and Central.
The planning process occurred in several phases. BBC began by hosting community meetings in late March and early April 2014 for both neighborhoods to solicit information on community needs related to housing, transportation, recreation, health, and safety. We also contacted over thirty key neighborhood stakeholders to conduct interviews regarding these needs.
In the second phase of the neighborhood planning process, BBC placed several large feedback boards throughout the Central and Kinsman neighborhoods in grocery stores, libraries, and eateries to collect ideas and suggestions from residents. Each board was completely covered with feedback from the community. We also surveyed nearly 200 residents who attended the annual Ward 5 Family Festival at Friendly Inn in June 2014. We used all the information gathered in this process and presented a preliminary draft of the plans to each neighborhood at meetings in late July 2014. Residents gave input on what they liked about the plans and suggestions on what should be changed.
During the third and final phase, BBC conducted a series of community meetings where over 100 residents and stakeholders gathered per meeting to review the latest draft of the plan which incorporated feedback gathered throughout the year. Residents in attendance were able to share what they agreed with in the plan and what if anything they thought was missing.
Presentations from all stages in the planning process were made available for download on BBC’s website. We made mention of the available plans on our social media and on our blog. Additionally, BBC kept paper copies of the presentations in the lobby for public viewing during regular business hours. Development staff members were available to explain the plan and answer questions. Residents and other members of the public were encouraged to submit comments and feedback on the plan.