MW planning

Plan advisory committee member Cody Jordan, Planning and Zoning board member Kyle Kelley, Councilman Carlos Maldonado, economic development corp. president John Kuhn and Mayor Regan Johnson brainstorm over a map for the Mineral Wells Comprehensive Plan Wednesday.

MINERAL WELLS — Steering heavy trucks away from downtown Mineral Wells again emerged as a priority in discussions of a long-term plan for Mineral Wells on Wednesday.

So did drawing passenger cars into the city’s historic center.

“We don’t want the majority of traffic to not see downtown, but we do want a truck route,” Ward 3 Councilwoman Beth Watson said as a 90-minute brain-storming session neared an end in the Steve Perdue Fire Training Center.

Future locations of neighborhoods, activity centers and traffic patterns dominated talks among the council, members of the Planning and Zoning Commission and the Comprehensive Plan Advisory Committee during this second workshop.

Urban planner Mark Bowers, with Dallas-based consultants Kimley-Horn, also laid out a loose timeline toward a public input event in Southeast Park en route to council adoption of a plan in June.

“We’ve found, in Mineral Wells, the best way to reach people is at events that are taking place,” Bowers said during a break.

No date has been set for the community input event. But it appears it will be the final shot residents have at adding their two cents to their city’s roadmap to the future.

Kimley-Horn previously asked residents for input at last fall’s Crazy Water Festival, at the Spooky Wells Halloween event and with an online survey that closed last week.

Bowers said 379 people had participated in the online survey, slightly more than the 303 that would have achieved the standard for such online queries of a population.

“We got more responses than we were actually shooting for,” he said. “It should be available on the project website by mid-March.”

That address is .

Bowers reported a few highlights.

The city’s parks and recreation offerings were rated a strength by 230 people, while 186 said downtown is a strength and 155 cited the city’s “small-town feel.”

The city’s aging infrastructure, lack of grocery stores and entertainment options were identified as weaknesses.

Affordable housing, continued work on the infrastructure and expansion of the animal shelter were identified as opportunities for improvement, Brown said.

“The animal shelter (improvements) happened on every list,” he added.

Some had mentioned better development of the old Fort Wolters Army Air Base, which now is an industrial park. Bowers said consultants had noted that and recommended Fort Wolters eventually have its own master plan.

As for where future school campuses might be built, Bowers recommended each area on the so-called place-type map include the phrase, “also suitable for schools,” where appropriate.

The planners hope to gather more community input at the as-yet unscheduled event this spring in the newly redesigned Southeast Park. The park is at 1708 Southeast Park Road, a few blocks south of Mineral Wells Junior High.

In addition to traffic, housing and business/industrial site patterns, the final product is expected to include financial strategies for the city, stormwater management and community facilities.

The designated routes for truckers was not ironed out Wednesday.

Several pathways were suggested, including one using Garrett Morris Parkway until one person pointed out the massive Wells subdivision being built there.

“Sounds like we need to put in some more work on the truck routes,” Bowers said.

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