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Citizens want younger, diverse community

People in Langley want more diverse neighborhoods and hope to do more to attract a younger population to the city. But, they also want to maintain the city’s character.

That’s what participants of the vision town meeting said in a poll taken at the recent comprehensive plan meeting.

The meeting focused on defining the vision for Langley. More than 60 people came and voiced their opinions and ideas May 25 at the Langley Methodist Church Fellowship Hall.

The city of Langley has begun a major community-based review of its comprehensive plan by the city’s comp plan group. The comprehensive plan details how Langley will grow over the next two decades.

The process to update the Langley’s comp plan started with a series of town meetings over the past two months.

Robert Gilman, chairman of the comp plan group, said the vision meeting began with a “poster walk” where participants made comments on posters that showed vision/ideas, such as Sui Generis’ plan for an art education center. Other ideas included a map of proposed pedestrian trails, a hillside town idea for building against the downtown bluffs, and “Sustainable Langley” as a strategy for helping the community better prepare for the future.

The participants then divided into 12 small groups that tackled the same topics that will be the basis for the comp plan group’s committees; land use, housing, transportation, economic development, parks and open space, waterfront, demographics, watersheds and bluffs, energy, food and agriculture, regional relations and arts, culture and education.

With the help of a facilitator, each small group brainstormed, discussed and generated lots of ideas across the wide range of topics and then reported back to the large group, Gilman said.

The meeting concluded with a special kind of poll that used posters with a long horizontal line that had two polar solutions at each end of the line.

Participants placed a colored dot on the line at the point that best represented how strongly they preferred one option over the other.

The findings gave the group a good idea of how the community feels on certain issues, Gilman said.

There won’t be anymore town meetings until late July as the group organizes committee work, Gilman said.

“We are taking this one step at a time. It’s not the usual (city government) process,” he said.

The comp plan group will next form committees around the same topics that the small groups used.

The comp plan group already has 84 members, but more are welcome. Anyone interested in being part of this process should contact Gilman, Mayor Neil

Colburn, or comp group members Paul Samuelson and Bob

Waterman.

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