Monthly Report - Office of the Town Planner
Submitted by: Albert V. Ranaldi Jr. - Town Planner
Below are brief descriptions of current projects and activities that the Planning Department was involved in during the months of September and October, 2017. If you would like a more detailed explanation of a particular project, please feel free to contact me.
Community Planning Projects
· Comprehensive Plan Update
The Town’s comprehensive plan was last updated in 2009. In 2011, the Comprehensive Planning and Land Use Regulation Act were amended. This amendment created a more efficient and effective process for Cities and Towns to update their Comprehensive Plans to be consistent with the State’s Land Use 2025: Rhode Island’s State Land Use Policies and Plan. The highlights of the amendment include setting a standard 20-year planning timeframe for the comprehensive plan and requiring a plan to be replaced or re-adopted every 10 years. All cities and town’s comprehensive plans must be consistent with the State’s plan by June 1, 2016. The Planning Department initiated an update to the current plan. The update will be conducted by the Planning Board through the Planning Department with advice from the Town Solicitor’s office. The comprehensive plan update was introduces to the Planning Board during their May meeting. I began to update the Land Use and Natural Resources elements of the Comprehensive Plan. During the month of May, I developed and issued a request for qualifications for a consultant to assist the planning department in updating the Comprehensive Plan. Four submissions were received. They will be evaluated in June. During the month of June, a consultant was selected and approved by the Town Council. The first meeting with the consultant is scheduled for the first week of July. A scope of work was refined and any new data, research, and maps were shared. Our consultant completed their scope of work. The Planning Department completed a build out analysis of land available for future development and will use this data to update sections accordingly. Finalized and took delivery of the require maps.
Monthly Progress Update: No update.
Community Development Block Grant Program
Program Update: All CDBG applications and corresponding funding was redirected to urban communities to foster the development of additional affordable housing units and economic development. The State has set-aside discretionary funds for smaller cities and town for small specific projects such as roof replacements, heating upgrades/replacement projects, etc. The cities and towns wishing to utilize these funds must follow an extensive inspection process. Due to the extensive inspection process, the Town of Lincoln has elected to refer all housing rehabilitation projects to the appropriate regional social service organizations.
The Planning Department developed and submitted an Open Space (Recreation) grant application issued by DEM. In August, the Town was awarded a conditional Recreational Grant to redevelop the existing garage at Chase Farm into a visitor comfort station. This grant will be funded if the state bond Question #6 - Green Economy Bonds passes in the general election on November 8. The new visitor comfort station will provide public handicap accessible restrooms, a concession room, a community room, and a covered pavilion. The existing garage area will remain as storage. This grant is dependent on
Monthly Progress Update: Question #6 passed in the General Election. Therefore, our grant was awarded to the Town. Project contracts were issued and sign. The Engineering Department engaged an architect to design the building. On January 24, we had a project kick off with the architect t and a subsequent meeting on January 30. During the month of February, we reviewed and approved the schematic design of the proposed comfort station. During the month of March, the proposed design was reviewed by the Rhode Island Historical Preservation and Heritage Commission. In the first week of April, we received project sign-off on the design. We authorized the architects to move forward with building design. During the month of May, the architects completed the building plans. The project went out to public bid on May 18. A pre-bid meeting was held on May 25. Project bids were due on June 9, 2017 at 2:00 PM. One of the bids came in under budget. The project was awarded to the selected contractor at a special Town Council meeting. The project began in July with the dismantling of the existing garage. Footings were dug and installed. In August, the contractor discovered ledge which had to be removed. The walls were constructed and all material was selected and ordered. During the months of September and October, the contractor made slower than expected progress on the building. All interior and exterior walls are constructed as well as the roof.
Attended the Planning Board’s September and October meetings.
MISC. ADMINISTRATIVE ACTIVITIES
· Attended staff meetings and director meetings as needed.
· Address all Town resident questions in regards to community planning and subdivision procedures.