NORTH YARMOUTH — The public’s input is sought on the town’s direction as a committee prepares to revise the 2004 Comprehensive Plan.
The 2016 Residential Survey is available at northyarmouth.org, and print copies can be obtained at Town Hall, 10 Village Square Road. Copies will also be available at the polls on Election Day, Nov. 8; surveys are due back to the town Nov. 15.
“It’s a really important survey, because we probably won’t do it again for another 10 years,” Town Manager Rosemary Roy said in an interview Oct. 5.
Input is crucial, because the plan serves as a “direction for North Yarmouth and its future,” she noted.
Roy said she would particularly like to know residents’ thoughts on the kind of growth they desire for the Village Center, as well as the services and quality of communication they receive from the town.
The 15-question survey asks residents how they describe the community today, and how they would like to describe it in the future. “That’s very key; it could be the same answer,” Roy said.
It also asks residents to rate public services, and seeks the top three advantages to living in town, as well as what kind of facilities or services people would like developed, expanded or improved upon in the next decade.
The poll delves into approaches to accommodate increased growth in town and changing the Village Center; North Yarmouth’s policy toward various forms of housing and commercial development; the protection of open space and natural resources; and the best forms of outreach concerning town meetings and community events and issues.
“It’s just a point in time for North Yarmouth to stop and say, ‘OK, here we are, this is where we’ve been, where are we going in the future,'” Roy said.
The Comprehensive Plan revision comes at a crucial time for North Yarmouth. The town is weighing redevelopment of the former North Yarmouth Memorial School, reconstruction of Wescustogo Hall, and introducing tax increment financing districts.
North Yarmouth is also looking for a strategic planning and economic development consultant, for which requests for proposals were due by Tuesday.
Roy said she has told the town’s Comprehensive Plan Committee, formed earlier this year, that she hopes to hear from at least 1,000 residents. As of last week about 100 had responded since the Sept. 17 Fun Day kickoff.
“The more we have, it’s just such a clearer picture,” Roy said.
The new plan must be adopted by residents, which could happen at town meeting in the spring. The town will attempt to obtain state certification for the plan, according to Roy.