Setting the Stage

Published in Envision Utah's Process

1. Stakeholder Involvement

Prior to the official start of the process, staff inform jurisdictions of the anticipated process and seek feedback from local officials.  Staff also seek commitments to participate in good faith in the effort.  A steering committee will be created representing public officials from local jurisdictions, development professionals, conservationists, media, and community leaders, among others.  The steering committee will be witnesses to the process – ensuring that all steps are done in a transparent manner based on sound public input.  They will also help ensure that the process represents local values, tests ideas that have some pragmatic grounding, and is communicated in a way that makes sense to residents.

2. Scoping

Based on the interviews and briefings from task 1, a review of past planning efforts, and input from the steering committee, additional detail will be added to the scope of work.  This task includes selecting consultants, if necessary, and defining roles and responsibilities.

3. Values Analysis

This task involves an in-depth analysis of what residents value about living in the area.  Care is taken to ensure equal demographic representation.  This task is important because it helps elected officials and planners understand how growth, transportation and environmental issues can be solved to respond to residents most fundamental values about quality of life.  This analysis also helps local leaders communicate the benefits of growth planning more effectively with residents.

4. Coordinate with Jurisdictions

The most effective way to ensure a substantial turnout in a process is to have local jurisdictions personally invite residents, such as through an invitation signed by the mayor.  This task coordinates each of the jurisdictions’ efforts to invite residents.

5. Establish “Baseline” Scenario

This baseline analysis provides a picture of the area’s projected fate if current development trends continue.  This acts as the control – helping us to understand the relative advantages and disadvantages of each alternative scenario.  The baseline analysis may include: projection of land development, anticipated housing characteristics, air quality, traffic congestion and water consumption.  The baseline analysis may also include an estimate of the market demand for various housing types into the future.  

6. Public Relations Campaign for Launch     

This task entails development of a campaign to inform resident of the consequences of the baseline scenario and a call to get involved in the process.  Letters, newspaper and radio advertisements, media coverage, public events, etc., are used to educate the public about pertinent issues and possible consequences.  Educating residents is critical for informed public participation in the process.

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