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City Scene: Share your views on future development

By: Evert Palmer, Folsom City Manager, Special to the Telegraph
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I often hear neighborhoods are the heart of what makes Folsom special.

As we begin to update our General Plan, the long-range planning document that provides a framework for future development, I encourage you to tell us what you value about your neighborhood and our community.

Tell us what is important to you – trails, schools, shopping, parks, cultural amenities or anything else that matters. Share your ideas about what is working well and how we can enhance it over the next 20 years. Our goal is to make Folsom even better by building on the existing community assets that make Folsom such a desirable place to live and contribute to our outstanding quality of life.

You may participate in planning for Folsom’s future from the comfort of home. Just log on to our new community engagement website — townhall.Folsom2035.com —and join a lively online discussion anytime day or night, from any computer.  This social media site provides an easy way to share your ideas, participate in surveys and polls, tune in to what your neighbors are saying and keep track of what is important to you.

During the initial phase of the project, the Town Hall Forum will ask general questions about your priorities and what you value. As the planning process evolves, we will ask more specific questions about challenges and issues to help us develop policies and actions that reflect how you and other residents see our community evolving.

We are offering this new social media tool because we understand that many people are simply too busy to attend lengthy meetings. We are hopeful that you will view the Town Hall Forum social media site as an easy tool to communicate with City planners and with other residents who care about Folsom’s future.

Another source of information about the Folsom 2035 General Plan Update is the project website – www.Folsom2035.com. I encourage you to sign up for email notices about meetings and workshops, and to view project milestones and the latest public documents.

State law requires that every city and county have a General Plan. Our last plan, which was developed in 1988, mapped out land use for the entire City and guided development over the past quarter century. Folsom was a small town in 1988, much different than the vibrant mid-sized community it is today.

We highly value our wonderful neighborhoods, schools, parks, trails, library, zoo, aquatic center, sports complex, senior center, art gallery, strong base of employers, historic district, and exciting shopping, dining and entertainment options. An update to our General Plan provides an opportunity to build on these successful elements and move forward with improvements that will promote sustainable development patterns in the coming years.

We believe it is imperative that the updated plan reflect what is important to the people who call Folsom home. Please join the discussion, stay informed and get involved. I welcome your comments at epalmer@folsom.ca.us.

Evert Palmer is the city manager of Folsom.