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Next Steps to Regional Growth Vision

Taking the Next Steps to Implement the Regional Growth Vision:
“How Shall We Grow?” Partners Hold Workshop  

For the 10 organizations that partnered to develop the 18-month “How Shall We Grow?” Campaign, the unveiling of the Central Florida Regional Growth Vision in August marked the beginning, rather than the end of the journey. Over the last four months, each organization has been crafting its strategy for encouraging implementation of the vision and on November 16, 2007, the partners gathered for a workshop to discuss key issues and next steps.
Workshop Attendees:
Karen Adamson, Florida Department of Transportation; Harry Barley, METROPLAN ORLANDO; Sheri Coven, Florida Department of Community Affairs; T.J. Fish, Lake-Sumter MPO; Sandy Hill, Florida Department of Transportation; Dean Hybl, myregion.org ; Phil Laurien, East Central Florida Regional Planning Council; Shelley Lauten, myregion.org ; John Moore, Florida Department of Transportation; Kathy Neill, Florida Department of Transportation; Judy Pizzo, Florida Department of Transportation; Susan Sadighi, Florida Department of Transportation; Patricia Steed, Central Florida Regional Planning Council
The workshop started with Harry Barley providing a brief overview of his recent meeting with members of the Governors Policy Department. He reported that they were very interested in what had been done in Central Florida with the How Shall We Grow? Project and were interested in how the results were being put into operation.
Partner Summaries:
Each partner provided a brief update of how their organization has been using the regional vision in their planning processes or communicating the vision to cities and counties across the region.
These reports became the basis for stimulating conversation that controlled the majority of the workshop. Below are some of the key themes that came out of the conversation:

  • Regional Visions cannot be mandated, but need to be incentive based. The “force of law” can be helpful for implementation, but not for developing visions.
  • Efforts must be grass roots.
  • Must have an education element before conducting visioning efforts. Need to build a common vocabulary.
  • It is important to build relationships and partnerships, both among elected officials and staff.
  • All partners need to have “skin in the game” to ensure that they will be involved in implementation.
  • Need some way to reward implementation of good processes.
  • Visions need to go “hand in hand” with the comprehensive plan process.

Below are some “Next Steps” that were discussed during the meeting:

  • Provide Feedback on Regional Toolbox: Cambridge Systematics has developed a “Regional Toolbox” to help cities and counties develop policies to implement the key elements of the Regional Vision. The next version of the Toolbox will be presented at the Joint Policy Committee Meeting on December 10, 2007, and partners were asked to provide feedback by November 30, 2007.
  • Involve Other State Agencies: Suggestion that other state agencies including: Department of Environmental Protection, Department of Agriculture, Department of Health, and Enterprise Florida should be involved in the regional vision process, especially at the implementation stage. Sheri Coven and Shelley Lauten agreed to coordinate a meeting other state agencies. Recommended Due Date: First Quarter of 2008.
  • Create “Talking Points” for Regional Leaders: Suggestion to develop some brief “Talking Points” about the Regional Vision for Regional Leaders to have for reference when discussing future growth issues. Phil Laurien agreed to develop the first draft of key points. Recommended Due Date: December 15, 2007 so they can be distributed by the end of the year.
  • Develop a Regional Report Card: Recommendation to develop a Regional Report Card to track progress made in the region. Among the key indicators to include were:
    • Density (including visual design)
    • Rate that land is being consumed
    • Transportation/Investment Mix

Phil Laurien will work with myregion.org to develop the first draft of a Report Card.
Recommended Due Date: First Quarter of 2008.

  • Continue Partner Meetings: Because continuing to develop relationships between local, regional and state organizations is so vital to the success of the Regional Vision, it was recommended that the Partner Group continue meeting on a quarterly basis with partners making every effort to attend in-person. It was recommended that the meetings in 2008 immediately follow the meetings of the “How Shall We Grow?” Congress of Regional Leaders. Those meetings are scheduled for:
    • Friday, February 1, 2008 – 10:00 a.m. – noon
    • Friday, May 2, 2008 – 10:00 a.m. – noon
    • Friday, August 1, 2008 – 10:00 a.m. – noon
    • Friday, November 7, 2008 – 10:00 a.m. – noon

The 2008 meetings will be held at the METROPLAN ORLANDO Offices (315 E. Robinson St., Suite 355, Orlando, FL 32801).