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Island growth report released
City's 2025 Growth Advisory Committee recommends channeling growth into Winslow while preserving open spaces
The island can absorb the growth predicted for it, but it must plan farther into the future to ensure growth doesnt overwhelm the islands valued characteristics and landscapes.
That was the conclusion of the city 2025 Growth Advisory Committees final report, released late this week.
The answer is yes, the island has the capacity to take on the nearly 7,000 new residents the city must plan for under state mandates, said committee chair Tim Bailey.
But the city must look beyond 2025 to adequately preserve and foster the islands valued attributes.
Building and infrastructure planning runs on a much longer timeline than two decades, Bailey said.
Looking (forward) 20 years is shortsighted, he said. We need to look into the 50-, 70-, 100-year horizon.
The study stresses the need for increased efforts to preserve open space, especially in the downtown area. The city should immediately undertake a year-long study to identify preservation opportunities and funding options, according to the study.
Echoing the citys Comprehensive Plan, the study strongly recommends that the island focus much of its predicted growth into Winslow and neighborhood centers.
Clustering growth, Bailey said, would allow the surrounding rural character to remain largely undeveloped.
The report is available online at www.ci.bainbridge-isl.wa.us/default.asp?ID=1283.