Comprehensive planning touches the lives of everyone in the community whether they are aware of it or not. It affects buildings, roads, open space, community facilities, the environment, jobs, and everything in between, so it is vitally important to incorporate as many voices as possible into its creation. Imagine Lexington 2045 is building on the original Imagine Lexington 2018 Comprehensive Plan that included an unprecedented public outreach strategy, with even more intentional public engagements.
On the Table 2017 was an incredible success for the 2018 plan, moving participation in the planning process from hundreds to thousands. This time On the Table has been incorporated yet again, but this time with a new collaborative partner in CivicLex and a more specific focus on the Comprehensive Plan. The results are a wealth of information that will live on well beyond the life of this planning process and will provide civic groups and interested organizations with a vast amount of data that is sortable and customizable to answer a wide variety of questions about Lexington’s future.
In addition to On the Table, outreach through Commerce Lexington solicited the opinions of the business community in Lexington through an intentional focus group process. This process provided staff the ability to hear directly from business leaders in the community. Staff not only heard from businesses, but through an outreach to civic organizations, heard from ten different groups that focus on the environment, neighborhoods, renters, smart growth, and other topics. Additionally, input was received from internal Divisions within the LFUCG as well, as they were asked to lend their expertise to our future growth strategy.
Each of these important inputs have been summarized here in this document, to show what was said by the participants. What results is an immense amount of data that has been organized and summarized, but not yet analyzed. That is the next step in the planning process as staff, the Planning Commission, and the Council deliberate on forming the Goals & Objectives which will be the basis for Imagine Lexington 2045.
Plans are only as good as the foundation upon which they are built, and a good foundation for any comprehensive plan involves deliberate and earnest public engagement as a starting point for understanding the desires of the community - to truly make it a community vision.