The Washington Times-Herald

Local News

January 16, 2013

City developing land-use plan for I-69 interchange

WASHINGTON — The City of Washington has begun work on a land-use plan for the I-69/U.S. 50 interchange.

Washington Mayor Joe Wellman introduced Jan Schuler-Hicks, who has volunteered her time to help the city develop its land-use plan for the area near the interchange. Schuler-Hicks explained she had worked with an engineering firm that did similar work in the Chicago area.

She said there was never a coordinated plan among local entities with a stake in the development at the interchange. Wellman and Schuler-Hicks interviewed firms and selected American Structurepoint Inc., which has done considerable land-use and city planning throughout the state, and “brought them to the table” with affected landowners. The discussion included what businesses everyone would like to see come to the city, what ones would make a good first impression on visitors, and how to get people off the interstate and into the city.

Wellman asked the board to approve contracts with American Structurepoint to help put together a plan and to assist with the latest Stellar Communities application.

“Nothing has ever been put together to take to prospective businesses,” the mayor said.

His request was approved.

Fleck new president

The city council elected Joe Fleck as their president for 2013. Councilman Eric Bassler made the nomination, thanking 2012 President Allen Brown for his service and for running the council in a bipartisan manner.

Fleck said this is the first time he can recall a Democrat president and a Republican administration or vice versa.

“I consider it an honor and a privilege,” he said, accepting the council’s vote of confidence. “You guys are open-minded.”

Actions were then taken by the council to transfer funds related to the wastewater utility.

“As you know, back in November I became a little concerned about the cash balances of the wastewater utility,” the mayor said.

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