Planning by popularity. MVRPC holds “community meetings.”

When there is a lack of leadership- we look to building consensus. Nothing wrong with collective hand-holding- as long as it’s in church, but when it comes to politics and policy- generally, what you get when you get a crowd together is mediocrity.

In church- you have an ultimate leader. One who clearly states what’s wrong and what’s right. In urban planning- not only do we lack a clear leader, we’ve put an impotent committee together- Miami Valley Regional Planning Commission- who then wants to hold a popularity contest- to set our course.

I’ve resisted writing about this- because, I generally like the people who work at MVRPC now. They are bright, they know what’s wrong, but, in general are powerless to really make anyone do anything.

They even reached out to bloggers like me – asking to promote their community group think.

I am contacting you to ask for your assistance in publicizing a community-based workshop for Phase II of Going Places – An Integrated Land Use Vision for the Miami Valley Region (please visit for more information). We are hoping for support and publicity from bloggers like you.

Since I’ve delayed talking about it- there are only 3 left- including one at Kettering Fairmount HS tonight (you can stay after and see Thurgood Marshall kick butt in basketball at 8pm).

a brief overview, the second phase of the Going Places Initiative will explore the future landscape options of the Region. More specifically, Phase II will build future land use scenarios and will evaluate land use scenario impacts. In order to identify and build collective regional land use scenarios, MVRPC will host 17 community-based workshops throughout the region to engage the general public in the future land use themes and scenarios development process. The workshop is designed to last approximately 90 minutes.

  • Thursday, March 18, 2010 6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. Fairmont High School, commons area 3301 Shroyer Road Kettering OH 45429
  • Wednesday, March 31, 2010 6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. Center for Regional Cooperation 1100 West 3rd Street Dayton OH 45407
  • Wednesday, April 7, 2010 6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. Friendship Village, Convocation Room 5790 Denlinger Road Trotwood OH 45426-1898

A few posts ago, we covered Martin Kim of MVRPC analysis of the land use in the region. And it’s funny- we mentioned him in the post on committee forming as well (first link in this post).

After that- I got a follow up note from someone at MVRPC “Um, Thanks, I think. :-)”

I’m going to keep the contents of most of that note private- since if they wanted it public- they could have commented on the post itself. But here is the reason I’m pumping the last three meetings:

We’re hoping to go to each of the 78 jurisdictions at the conclusion and tell them, “X number of people — voters — attended these workshops.  Maybe you should listen to what your constituents say.”  If developers show up, then our results will reflect that.  If environmentalists show up, our results will reflect that.  All we can do as an agency is to beg folks to come and voice their opinion.

Heaven help us if the “developers” show up- we’re already over developed. The key thing to note- why the hell do we have 78 jurisdictions? Can we please move into the modern day- instead of sticking with a structure devised with the Northwest Ordinance of 1784 and the Land Ordinance of 1785.

And, oh, yeah- how about a leader? One whom we can hold accountable?

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