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City of Grand Rapids begins updating Master Plan

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Posted at 11:38 AM, Mar 03, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-03 11:38:31-05

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — City of Grand Rapids staff have begun the planning process for a new Master Plan, which guides the city on issues like land use, development, infrastructure, public safety, job training, sustainability and overall quality of life.

The current Master Plan was completed in 2002 and covers 20 to 30 years, requiring a review every five years, according to a news release Wednesday.

Phase 1 of the process gathered information from the community on the successes of the 2002 Master Plan and where improvements can be made.

Twenty Master Plan facilitators – individual community members and representatives from community organizations – coordinated meetings to review and discuss the 2002 plan.

The new Master Plan will address issues that have become higher priorities since the previous plan, such as housing availability and reducing the city’s environmental impact, along with new priorities of equity, inclusion and sustainability.

“While our current Master Plan provides an effective starting point, we know there are gaps that need to be filled to create the blueprint for our City for the next 20 years or so,” Planning Project Manager Layla Aslani said.

Grand Rapids is now entering the second phase of the process, which calls for public input and participation.

City staff will host community meetings to discuss the future of Grand Rapids and how the Master Plan can better represent and serve its residents.

This will tentatively begin in late Summer 2021.

“We want members from all areas and communities of our city to contribute so that we can better understand the wants and needs of our city as a whole,” said Kristin Turkelson, planning director for the city.