TO: Local Planning Agency
FROM: Bill Spikowski and Carol Cunningham
DATE: December 24, 1996
SUBJECT: Initial Draft of Goals for the Comprehensive Plan
Over the next eight months we will be preparing drafts of each of the "elements" of your comprehensive plan. The portion of each element that will be formally adopted by the Town must include three distinct types of text: goals, objectives, and policies (GOPs, in planners' shorthand).
The specific wording of all text will be customized to meet your needs, and we are allowed considerable latitude in format. But each goal, objective, and policy must meet the specific definitions found in Rule 9J-5, as follows:
The largest portion of your plan will be made up of "policies," since they describe the details of how you intend to reach your goals. The refinement of appropriate policies will be a major portion of your workload over the coming year.
"Objectives" are designed for future use in assessing your progress in achieving your goals. Objectives must be specific and measurable; but since there often is little data available for measuring actual progress, this task can be fairly difficult. Objectives are often drafted last, and we need not address them further at this time.
"Goals" are usually prepared early in the planning process because of their general nature. They arise from a combination of the community's vision for itself and also the goals contained in the state and regional comprehensive plans. Each element must contain at least one goal, although several may be used. (Each goal must be followed by one or more objectives that will measure progress on specific subjects that are listed in Rule 9J-5.)
During our work for you this summer and fall, we have analyzed your previous plans and formulated the narrative portion of the "vision statement" that you reviewed during your December meetings. We are now presenting an initial draft of goals for all eleven elements. Our approach to drafting these goals was to incorporate as much content as possible in each while remaining reasonably succinct. Goals in many comprehensive plans are too wordy and at the same time too general to be meaningful; we have tried to avoid both tendencies. We will reexamine each of these goals when preparing the specifics of each element, but are presenting this draft now to illustrate how the "vision statement" begins to be translated into specific plan elements. We are also soliciting any initial comments you may have on this language.
FUTURE LAND USE
To achieve an urban form that appropriately manages growth and redevelopment; preserves the variety of neighborhood types; reduces congestion; enhances community assets; and promotes economic vitality. These efforts are always tempered by our hurricane vulnerability, which we intend to mitigate by avoiding overbuilding, encouraging pre-storm strengthening of buildings, improving evacuation opportunities, and planning ahead for healthy reconstruction after a major disaster.
COMMUNITY DESIGN AND LIVABILITY
To preserve the small-town livability of Fort Myers Beach while retaining its viability as a resort town, through community design measures that enhance the appearance and functioning of its various neighborhoods, commercial areas, natural amenities, transportation corridors, and recreational areas. These measures will emphasize human-scale physical design, promote community interaction, reinforce the quality and safety of residential areas, and diversify and strengthen the mix of businesses and attractions that serve residents and visitors.
To keep a wide variety of housing types available to people at all stages of their lives.
To provide a circulation system for improved mobility throughout our community using measures such as:
To improve the existing systems that provide safe drinking water, irrigation water, and sewer service in order to reduce environmental impacts on land and water while keeping costs as economical as possible.
To provide optimal flood protection and improved stormwater quality within the constraints imposed by existing land-use patterns.
CONSERVATION AND COASTAL MANAGEMENT
To protect the natural resources in and around the Town from further damage and ensure their future health through regulations, timely management, and public improvements.
To inform the public about the potential effects of hurricanes and tropical storms, minimize the loss of life and property from major storms, and plan a more sustainable redevelopment pattern.
RECREATION, OPEN SPACE, AND CULTURAL
To provide residents and visitors of all ages an accessible system of parks, open spaces, beach accesses, natural preserves, and cultural activities that promote an understanding of our community's environmental and cultural heritage.
To identify the historic resources of Fort Myers Beach and maintain the "best of the old" when redeveloping our community.
To efficiently coordinate public services among the many public and private agencies that play important roles in our community.
To plan and finance needed major public improvements to meet the levels of service adopted in this plan, in a manner that maintains existing infrastructure and minimizes public costs.