As many community members know, the town of Mountain View has been updating their Comprehensive Plan, which was 20 years old. BerryDunn, the well-respected professional consulting firm, was selected by the Council to guide the town through the updating process which involved evaluating existing condition, soliciting community input, and recommending implementation steps.
Project Manager Khara Dodd has been working with Mayor Emilie Mitcham, Council, residents and staff over the last six months. She recently shared the completed Inventory and Analysis Report detailing existing conditions in the town, and the Community Vision Statement and Engagement Summary reporting on the engagement efforts to date. Complete copies of both reports can be obtained at Town Hall, 4176 Benton Street, during regular office hours, Monday through Thursday 9am to 5pm, or by emailing the Mayor at firstname.lastname@example.org or the Town Clerk at email@example.com.
The Inventory and Analysis report includes sections detailing challenges and opportunities for the town.
For example, Mountain View’s small size and land use pattern are two of the defining characteristics that make the community unique. One of the 2000 Comprehensive Plan goals is to retain the Town of Mountain View’s “small town feel” and to “support development and redevelopment that is similar in scale and design to existing and surrounding development.”
Mountain View has done a demonstrably good job of meeting those expectation of the 20-year-old plan. The final updated plan will need to consider how to accommodate new development and redevelopment opportunities while maintaining the attributes that are consistent with its community scale and form.
Parks, Recreation, and Open Space are also critical elements to consider. The Town’s park equipment needs upgrades and replacements, and the town recently completed a survey of residents’ opinions regarding remodeling options. Berry Dunn’s Inventory and Analysis report states, “The Town’s population is becoming younger, and includes a larger percentage of children under the age of 15 than the County and the State. When planning park improvements, the Town should consider this important demographic factor. “
The Town is working on a municipal building expansion project and has completed an assessment to determine space needs. To meet future needs, the Town will need to continue to evaluate office space to ensure that staff have the adequate space and tools to do their jobs. The Administrative and Police Departments are under consideration for expansion. A chamber space for the Court and the Administration are part of the planned upgrades. Improvements for the Police Department would include the development of its own institutional entrance, a holding cell, and restrooms and showers for officers. As the Town continues to plan for facility expansion, it should also consider programming space that can help cultivate community. A community gathering place in Town Hall can help to build capacity for meeting and event space to meet the growing needs of the Town.
No planning conversation is complete without considering fiscal realities. BerryDunn’s Inventory and Analysis speaks directly to this issue:
Mountain View’s fiscal outlook remains positive. General Fund revenues are projected to remain on a growth trajectory, forecasted to increase to $3 million annually by fiscal year 2025, an increase of 17% over fiscal year 2020. This is driven in large part by significant year-over-year increases in sales tax revenue generated from recreational marijuana retail sales coupled with responsible spending annually. As a result, the Town maintains an unassigned operational fund balance estimated to be over 94% of total projected expenditures by fiscal year 2025. The Town continues to be prudent in spending but will look to the recommendations of the Comprehensive Plan and previously identified capital projects designed to properly maintain the Town’s infrastructure while providing opportunities for strategic investments in the Town’s future over the next several years.