Wednesday, 19 August 2009 00:44

Plymouth Files General Plan With No Growth Limit

slide1.pngPlymouth – Plymouth City Council last week approved a General Plan that left out any limits to growth. A city water pipeline could be in place by fall, lifting a building moratorium and paving the way for a major building boom. At least 9 development projects have sought housing and commercial projects in Plymouth. City Manager Dixon Flynn said Petaluma went through such a building boom, with 1,700 homes were built. “Problems were pointed out, but looked over because things were happening,” and his children attended split shifts at schools, where minimum class sizes were 50 students. Amador School Superintendent Dick Glock told the council that schools could handle the growth expected in Plymouth, listed in the plan at 23 to 36 homes a year. Flynn said that statement in the General Plan would equate to 2,000 to 2,500 homes by the year 2025. He said it was not a policy, but the council could return to the issue and put a growth policy in place. Flynn said another number in the plan, the “worst case scenario”, was required, and it showed how many houses could be built in the entire city “Sphere of Influence,” and the “Planning Area.” That was 10,000 units, a number Flynn said could never be reached, as it “would mean building on every square inch” in the Sphere of Influence and Planning Area, but would never happen because the city would need parks. He said the council must decide if it wants to establish growth limits. Past Councilwoman and Planning Commissioner Elida Malick said besides “character based development,” growth control is the most important aspect of planning, and not considering common concepts is a bad idea. She asked that they stick to a “4 percent growth limit on development.” City Planner Paula Daneluk said the plan in one area listed 1,024 lots, “taking into account what the city already has on the books.” It also kept 1,065 EDUs, which Amador Water Agency says the new pipeline will serve in the city, over and above the 530 existing EDUs in town. Daneluk said she was instructed by the council to leave AWA’s number in the plan. Vice Mayor Greg Baldwin said: “We want to tread lightly on trimming growth percentages out of the city. If growth comes, let it happen. No developer wants to spend money and not recoup some of it.” Flynn said they should remember Petaluma, and if they have one child per house, schools would be overwhelmed. Baldwin said the “council is not going to deal with those numbers,” but the correct number is 2.3 people per house, and “that doesn’t mean every house will have a child.” He said the city would likely attract more retirees without school-aged children. He said the economy will determine the growth rate of the city. Story by Jim Reece This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.