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Miami County residents still have a few days left to fill out the county’s comprehensive plan survey.

The county is gathering public input as it looks to update its comprehensive plan.

The county has not completed a formal update of the plan since 2004.

The survey is available via the project website at www.miamicountyksplan.com through Sunday, Jan. 17.

County commissioners voted in March 2020 to contract with Olsson, Inc. dba Ochsner Hare & Hare, the Olsson Studio to provide Miami County with a comprehensive plan for $125,000.

Olsson ranked highest during a request for qualifications (RFQ) process among firms being considered for the project.

Olsson Vice President Ken Boone met with county commissioners during study sessions in early 2020 to talk about the project.

Boone has worked on numerous comprehensive plans, including one most recently for Leavenworth County.

County Administrator Shane Krull said it is customary for counties to develop a new comprehensive plan every seven to 15 years.

“Especially in communities that have grown, which Miami County fits with its proximity to Kansas City,” Krull said previously.

The county’s Planning and Zoning Department encourages the public to take the survey and continue visiting the project website to learn about additional opportunities to offer input on the plan, according to a press release.

Paper copies of the survey are available upon request.

County officials said the new comprehensive plan will be tailored to address growth and development in the county since the last update 17 years ago.

Krull said in an earlier interview the county has a lot of different pressures in terms of land use.

Most of the population centers in Miami County are growing, according to U.S. Census Bureau estimates.

The project was scheduled for completion in February 2021 but the timeline has been pushed back because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Miami County retained Janet Ady, president and CEO of Ady Advantage, in May 2020 to provide economic development consulting services. Her Madison, Wis.-based firm was tasked with completing an economic development competitiveness assessment of the county, summarizing its findings and making recommendations for next steps.

The economic development strategic plan provided by Ady Advantage will be the primary source of economic/market data and findings for the comprehensive plan project, according to Olsson.

Olsson also will review the county’s 2004 comprehensive plan, economic development strategic plan, comprehensive transportation plan (1995), zoning regulations and subdivision regulations.

“The new comprehensive plan will build upon previous plans, balancing urban development with rural lifestyles to ensure that the county may continue to sustainably grow and develop to accommodate the needs of its residents,” according a press release issued by the county’s Planning and Zoning Department.

The plan will also assess the current state of the county, identify the county’s biggest assets and future challenges, and set policies for future land use, transportation, recreation, quality of life, and natural resource management, according to the release.

Direct inquiries to Teresa Reeves, Planning and Zoning director, at (913) 294-9553, or planning@miamicountyks.org.

News Editor Doug Carder can be reached at (913) 294-2311 or doug.carder@miconews.com.

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