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Planning Goals Include City's Smart Growth
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Build a Riverbank of tomorrow is the main goal of the Community Development Department, said Director J.D. Hightower in his written contribution to a recent meeting of department heads to discuss their objectives for this year.

The city should start annexation of the Bosio property at the northwest corner of Oakdale and Claribel roads, finish subdivisions and commence a plan check and inspection for a senior affordable project; develop a competent staff delivering a high quality of service but with a smaller, smarter staff; and develop "green building" standards.

Encouraging smart growth is another of the department's goals. It should provide a system to collect system development fees at the time of annexation on a per acre basis; evaluate a complete fee package for collecting development fees; resolve the North County Corridor issue in the best interest of the city; participate and represent the city's interests in the Valley Blueprint and Stanislaus Sustainable Communities Strategy as proposed by SB 375.

In pursuing a 'city beautiful' movement, Hightower said his department will continue Spring Clean type projects and programs, work with the Sheriff's Department on concentrated, coordinated enforcement programs; and cooperate with Public Works on civic enhancement projects such as a memorial wall, city entry features and Oakdale Road landscaping.

Protecting and expanding the city's accessibility is also a goal. The department will work with partners to study and develop a "green print" for the community and river corridor; begin improvements in access for the disabled during reconstruction and inspection at the former Riverbank Army Ammunition Plant; and pursue planning grant funds such as those available under Proposition 84.