With little discussion, the Jamestown Planning Board approved the 2021 Comprehensive Plan at a special called meeting Sept. 20. The Board unanimously recommended the Plan be sent to the Town Council for final approval, which is expected to be in October.

Vagn Hansen, of Benchmark Planning told the Planning Board – several of whom were on the steering committee for the plan – of the nearly two-year process to receive citizen and committee input on the plan. Benchmark assisted the Town in the update of the Plan. Listening sessions, community conversations, a community survey, downtown walking tours and growth management workshops were part of the process.

“A comprehensive plan, or land use plan, is primarily a guide for future development, capital investments and growth management decisions for the next decade,” Hansen said. “It sets forth the ‘blueprint’ for the future of Jamestown, providing a clear vision and guiding principles.”

The Plan encompasses the corporate limits as well as the extra-territorial jurisdiction (ETJ) of the town. A future land use map divides the area into 14 distinct land use categories: Town Center, Commercial Corridor, West Main Street, Business Park, Industrial, Mill District, Campus, Mixed Use, Town Residential, Suburban Residential, Deep River Residential, Estate Residential, Parks and Open Space and Mackay-Guilford, which is the former Johnson farm property.

These divisions will help make land use and development decisions. All zoning changes and zoning ordinance amendments must comply with the Comprehensive Plan.

During the development of the Plan, the steering committee crafted a new vision statement for the future of the town. Hansen said the final line sums it up: “Moving forward, we will continue to seek excellence in all that we do as we build a community that everyone is proud to call home.”

Included in the new Plan are 13 guiding principles that the Town should follow while considering future land use.

The Planning Board also unanimously approved updates to the body’s Rules of Procedure.

An anticipated discussion and vote regarding updates to the Land Development Ordinance was postponed until Nov. 8. The updates relate to nuisance abatement, the property management code, the minimum housing code and sign regulations.

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