4 Key Questions Will Determine Hartford's Future
What will make the town vibrant in 2038?
Hartford held the last of five forums to gather public input for the upcoming revision to the Hartford Town Plan. The forums examined specific areas in need of revision— housing, economic development, land use, energy, historic preservation and facilities.
The final forum’s format was a bit different than the earlier ones. Town Planner Lori Hirshfield asked the participants to think about issues beyond the traditional nitty-gritty of town plans—preserving open land, parking, growth concerns— and look at potential changes in Hartford that could be every bit as dramatic as the completion of I-91 and I-89 had on the town half a century ago.
“As planners and developers, we need to understand what will drive a vibrant community as people connect less and less with bricks and mortar buildings for work and commerce,” explained Hirshfield. To illustrate her point Hirshfield then asked forum attendees to consider the following four questions and think about how they will influence a town plan looking two decades into the future.
*As we become more adept at doing business, shopping and play via the internet, what is next for developing strong and viable communities?
*Should the focus be on creating places where people want to live since being close to where you work might not be the driving force when choosing a house?
*What are the implications for land use planning and development?
*Should the focus be on creating vibrant and sustainable cities, downtowns and villages based on where people want to live and the lifestyle and amenities that go along with this?
How do you think the town plan should address these questions? You'll have an opportunity to weigh in this winter. The timeline for the Town Plan revision calls for public release of the new document in late November or early December. At that time additional public meetings for citizen reaction to the draft will be scheduled.