Weatherford Democrat

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January 23, 2014

South Main, downtown signage considered

Council to consider directional signs as part of Downtown Action Plan steps

By BRIAN SMITH

An update on what has been accomplished with the city Downtown Action Plan was given to Planning & Zoning Commission members Wednesday afternoon.

Due to a lack of quorum, the meeting was never opened and no action was taken. Three of the seven members, Gale Bradford, Janis Saunders and Charles Brown, attended.

Director of Planning and Development Craig Farmer said two meetings were held last year to find out what people wanted in a downtown over the next 20 years. The first, in February, was held to gather ideas. City staff then spent the next several months developing those ideas to see what was feasible and could be done.

The second, in October, was to check public support for the ideas. City staff developed a 20-point action plan and the public rated items from urgent to unnecessary.

Four out of five people attending the October meeting rated updating building codes as urgent. Farmer said the city council approved updating the codes at a meeting earlier this month.

Having updated codes could help development downtown and throughout the city as well as lower insurance rates for property and homeowners in the city itself, Farmer said.

Five other areas of the plan are being worked on right now, including way-finding signs which Farmer said are scheduled to go before the council during its regular meeting Tuesday night. Two different sets of signs are being looked at; one set to go along South Main and another, more rustic, to be placed downtown.

Director of Capital Transportation Projects Terry Hughes had been working on getting signs along and near South Main for some time, Farmer said. Hughes is also working on the Downtown Inner Loop project, considered essential for the downtown area to become more pedestrian-friendly.

Council members are expected to look at the Downtown Action Plan as part of Tuesday’s meeting, which begins at 6:30 p.m.

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