Monday, November 17, 2008

A Green Downtown

Here's some of the HoCo planning staff's recommendations for sustaining the environment downtown:

1. The Plan should include strategies for exceeding the County’s required standards related to green construction and operations.
2. The Plan should provide a timetable for implementing environmental restoration and storm water management projects described in the Supplemental Documents. Environmental restoration and storm water management projects should be specifically described in the phasing plan and should include formal agreements for ongoing maintenance prior to completion of the phase.
3. The Plan should provide for an acre-to-acre replacement plan of parkland for each acre of Symphony Woods where new buildings are planned; or, the plan should suggest other locations for proposed arts, cultural and community facilities if the Columbia Association does not authorize such facilities on their land.
4. The Plan should discuss distinct (mutually exclusive) definitions and separate requirements for accounting of existing designated open space, new amenity areas and new arts, cultural and community uses and facilities.
5. The Plan should indicate a minimum required amount of total new amenity areas in acres per neighborhood.
6. The Plan should coordinate proposed Design Guidelines and proposed Sustainability Framework to provide for general Green Design Guidelines for all of Downtown Columbia for adoption by the County Council. These Green Design Guidelines could then be used as the basis for devising unique Green Design Guidelines for each neighborhood that could be included in each neighborhood-specific FDP amendment.
7. As the proposed master plan is refined, alternate designs should be pursued to minimize impacts on highquality forest areas identified in Supplemental Documents.

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