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CAC Meeting #4

December 15, 2016

In attendance: CAC Committee, Sharon Ebert, Laura Richter, City Staff

This additional CAC meeting was called to create a better understanding of the comprehensive planning process and purpose. TSW met with the City and the CAC committee to have a group discussion on goals, the vision statement and to view a presentation from one of the committee members.

First, the planning process diagram was presented to show the committee we are currently in the “Visioning” portion of the process which means we are formatting big ideas, as well as identifying areas for redevelopment, development and preservation. All of these ideas and areas identified are derived from community input at public workshops, CAC meetings, and the online survey results thus far. The group then transitioned to discussing the top 10 goals which were ranked at the last public workshop. During this discussion the committee categorized the goals into: land use, quality of life, and economic development. This help synthesize goals and to determine if ones should be combined. Goals #1 and #8 from the list were combined and some were viewed as objectives that may be incorporated into an updated Vision Statement.

Next, the team transitioned into discussing the Vision Statement. We reviewed the 2008 comprehensive plan Vision Statement as well as the one from the 2016 Strategic Plan. The committee liked the Strategic Plan’s statement with some tweaks. TSW will present and updated draft at that statement to the committee at our next meeting in January based on their edits and open to further tweaks. The team then discussed the three day workshop schedule and materials. It was explained to the committee that it is very important to attend as much as the workshop as possible and to attend all public meetings. The CAC reviewed our draft study area nodes and they supplied us with other locations such as Jones Bridge Road and Kimball Bridge Road, Jones Bridge Road and State Bridge Road and Parsons Road at 141. These nodes will be reviewed and added to the map for further study.

Lastly, Anand Thacker, a member of the committee gave a presentation on a “Big Idea” for the city’s future. Much discussion was about Johns Creek lacks of identity, what does it want to be? The committee commented that the City is currently known as a bedroom community. Anand’s idea is to transition Johns Creek into a health care hub while still maintaining its high quality housing stock. This presentation looked at ideas such as healthcare incubators and expanding on the existing Emory Hospital campus. Anand has a website called “IheartJC.com” which further explains his goals and ideas for the City. His presentation and video from the meeting can be viewed below. The CAC wants to meet again before the three day workshop to further discuss the Vision Statement and for the opportunity for other members to present Big Ideas for the City’s future on January 19, 2017 at 6pm.

 

iHeartJC Presentation Slides


iHeartJC Presentation Video


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Planning Workshop #2

 At this meeting  which was help November 10, 2016 at 7PM at City Hall including taking the goals formulated by the Citizen Advisory Committee and analyzed them in detail. These goals were directly created from the SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats) analysis done in Planning Workshop #1. In Planning Workshop #2 each community member was part of a group which ranked the goals (1-19) in order of importance to Johns Creek. The Project Team explained that it is important to create a priority list of milestones the community would like to reach in the next twenty years. As the comprehensive planning process can get overwhelming this helps a community focus on what is most important to their future. The results of this exercise will be posted on our Public Outreach page. A group leader from each table read their rankings out loud. The Project Team recorded them and tallied a composite list.

Our second exercise was to review the character areas from the previous plan done in 2008. Each table reviewed a packet highlighting the areas goals and qualities. Groups were split between consolidating some of the 12 character areas and preserving them. The public used trace paper to draw over the character area maps to identify consolidations and also to start thinking about nodes or village center locations. These drawings will be uploaded to the Public Outreach page with results. Please attend our community workshop in January. A schedule will be posted soon and we hope to see many members of the Johns Creek community in attendance! As always please leave any comments or email connectjohnscreek@tsw-design.com!IMG_3739.JPGIMG_3746.JPG


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CAC Meeting #3

 November 10, 2016:

In attendance: CAC Committee, Sharon Ebert, Laura Richter, Adam Williamson, Richard Fangman, Andrew Antweiler, Allison Bustin, City Staff

Our third meeting with the CAC began with a committee member proposing a structure and leadership structure for the group. This motion was tabled by the committee members and consultants proceeded as we had a full agenda for the time allotted. The project team encouraged the CAC to communicate outside of our regular meetings. We presented the results of the SWOT analysis and asked them to comment and add anything they felt was missing.

The Project Team then went around the room and had each member tell us a goal for the project informed by the SWOT results. This resulted in 19 goals which were to be revealed in the public meeting and ranked by citizens in order of importance. Many goals were similar, some combined including town center, nodal development, and transportation system goals. A ranked final list is recorded in a separate document and will be published on our website and distributed to the public.

Considering some felt there was a time crunch in this meeting, the Project Team plans to have two CAC meetings during the workshop or a longer time allotment for meetings. With each CAC meeting we try to adapt and accommodate the needs of the committee members.


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Planning Workshop #1

Our first Planning Workshop kicked off at 7PM on October 27, 2016 at City Hall. We had over 30 residents participate in our first meeting. For this meeting we sent out email blasts and advertised at local events such as the Johns Creek Arts Festiimg_0152val. We encourage all that visit this webpage to tell your neighbors or friends to join us as we move through this exciting and fun process!

This meeting introduced the general public to the comprehensive planning process and highlighted aspects of their 2008 Comprehensive Plan. We informed the public of our website and online survey. You can find and read a copy of your 2008 plan here!

A detailed presentation on demographics was given to the community to give them conditions from 2008 and today. This presentation is posted on our Public Outreach page and here. We expanded on this demographic presentation through feedback from our Community Advisory Committee meeting on October 8th, 2016.

The 2008 Comp Plan was reviewed including the previous Vision Statement and character area maps. In this plan there are 12 character areas which will be discussed at our next public meeting. Should they be condensed or kept the same based on a 20 year vision? These are important questions to think about. Feel free to comment below if you have some ideas or email connectjohnscreek@tsw-design.com.

The Project Team then went over an existing conditions analysis which shows a current snapshot of land use, zoning, transportation conditions and civic amenities. We also presented vacant land and shopping centers with low vacancy rates.

The Project Team then conducted a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats) analysis. The public was divided up into 8 tables where they discussed strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats to land use, economic development, and transportation. This type of initial analysis is great at generating ideas and starting the discussion of a twenty year vision. The consultants circulated and answered questions during this time. The results will be posted on our Public Outreach page.  Each table read aloud their responses. We heard responses about traffic congestion, preserving the single family homes, expanding the bike/pedestrian network and the desire for more arts and cultural activities.

 

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CAC Meeting #2

October 27, 2016 

In attendance: CAC Committee, Sharon Ebert, Laura Richter, Adam Williamson, Richard Fangman, Allison Bustin, City Staff

Our second meeting with the CAC began with takeaways from the tour. We discussed each neighborhood and everyone agreed they enjoyed touring Woodstock and Glenwood Park the most. The Project Team compiled some stats from the different communities to show them what densities that had toured and to define the mix of uses each place has to offer.

We followed up this discussion with a presentation on demographics in the community as requested. In this meeting we also discussed the 2008 Comp Plan including the previous Vision Statement and whether or not it was appropriate still for the community as well as reviewing the current 12 Character Areas. The project team also shared expanded demographic information from 2008 and present day. This was requested by the CAC during the October 8th tour. The consultants then led a discussion about transportation goals and big ideas for the project. I have included a photo of our list generated with the committee. This was a good warm up activity as the CAC joined us in the public meeting for a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats) analysis. We encourage the CAC members to be stewards of their community and guide the process with the public. We gave the CAC homework including a ULI presentation and to review the previous Comp Plan for comment.

photo-of-big-ideas-discussion-notes-at-cac2


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CAC Meeting #1 Tour of Communities

October 8, 2016:

The Community Adivsory Committee (CAC) is a group of citizens chosen by the City to represent the population of Johns Creek throughout the comprehensive planning process.

In attendance: CAC Committee, Sharon Ebert, Laura Richter, Adam Williamson, Richard Fangman, City Staff

The day kicked off with a presentation on existing conditions and demographics throughout the community. Each CAC member was given a packet that included development information for each community and maps.

Our first stop at Glenwood Park  included an introduction to the project at the Town Square. The group viewed the mixed use buildings and also walked through the townhome and single family home portion of the project. The group walked through the oval park and discussed its role in storm water management for the community. This development exhibited how low density mixed use and walkable communities can be implemented and family oriented. It is also an example of alley loaded residential products. Next, the group visited Inman Park to see a larger town center/village development integrated with a trail system. Our group walked through Inman Green mixed-use project and along the Atlanta BeltLine to show how the development fronts the trail and enriches this multi-use amenity. Last the group traveled to downtown Woodstock to see a small town infill and renovation. The group walked through both the historic and newly developed portions since 2004. Members finished the tour in the single family and townhome portion and explored its varied green spaces including pocket parks and courtyards.


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Community Education Session #1 – Land Use + Transportation

 This meeting brought two industry experts together to discuss land use and transportation strategies for suburban communities.

First, Joe Kohl of Dover Kohl & Partners presented on walkable communities. Mr. Kohl described changing trends in generations including the decrease in car ownership and less value placed on driving. Examples on how to retrofit suburban places into more walkable, mixed- use environments were presented. Several case studies were presented include Winter Park, Florida and Glenwood Park, Atlanta.

The response to Mr. Kohl’s presentation was mixed. Several communtiy members had questions on the topics presented. The desire to maintain the single family bedroom community structure was expressed by some, while others advocated for more walkable, mixed-use areas.

 

Paul Moore of Nelson Nygaard presented on suburban transportation strategies. This was generally well received by the public in attendance and the discussion was productive. One of the ideas that was favored by the community was the creation of access roads or new roads through existing or demising commercial developments to divert traffic off main arterials. Paul also explained how when you widen a road it come with more curb cuts and commercial development risks. Mr. Moore also shaped his transportation discussion around wellness and how multi-modal transportation accessibility supports healthy lifestyle habits and increases physical activity. He concluded with stating that you must plan for the roads you want to manage, not the other way around.

 

Key Takeaways

-No high rise development (2-3 stories) for any type of walkable, town center
-Creative traffic solutions for the suburbs imperative – they want more

-Diverting traffic into retrofitted commercial centers is an option

-Bike infrastructure is desired

-Preserve bedroom community