Sustainable Northfield Comprehensive Plan
From: Scott Schumacher (scottsholisticgeek.com)
Date: Tue, 27 Mar 2007 20:57:22 -0700 (PDT)
I'm posting this to our discussion group, so that it can be archived as well. This is the first posting by Olivia Frey.

Dear All:

The Center for Sustainable Living would like to gather together a coalition of environmental groups and other like-minded folk and put together a plan for a more sustainable Northfield to be presented to the Planning Commission and the Northfield City Council in light of the current Comprehensive Plan review process.

As the secretary to the board of the CSL I am initiating a discussion about what a more sustainable Northfield would look like in ten years. Not much of what we know today regarding the environment may be the same. Will our vegetables continue to be trucked from California and flown from Chile? Will we have reached peak oil, or will oil prices be so high that our current transportation system be dismantled? How will changes in our climate affect everything?

It seems that this round of Comprehensive Plan review cannot be business as usual.

What would a truly sustainable comp plan look like?

To start the discussion, I'm throwing out the following:

1. Northfield will be energy independent, implementing a combination of wind and solar to provide the energy needs of the area.

2. Existing Agricultural land will be preserved. Biodiverse farms will be developed, including animal and vegetable as well as fruit farms, providing food for the local families, and also providing food for markets in a broader region (restaurants, etc.).

3. Increase green spaces ala the Greenways plan already plotted out (name?) Do not see exisating agricultural land as only potentially undeveloped commercial, industrial and residential land.

4. Stop commercial/retail/ growth, sprawl, to the north and south. Concentrate retail growth within the core of Northfield.

5. Concentrate industrial park growth within existing areas. Encourage CLEAN industry--food, dairies, digital

6. Require new businesses and industry to commit to the triple bottom line--people, profit and planet

7. Encourage/provide incentives for carbon neutral building--residential, commercial, etc. At least enforce our current ordinance requiring that all homes be built facing south!

8. Develop a center for economic development in sustainable businesses etc. Incubator businesses in sustainable endeavors.

Everyone please add to this and refine it. What examples, data, details, etc do you know of? Other points that we can add? Do you know of communities who have done these things--which ones and how? How could some of this be funded?

Send responses to me and I'll send out another e-mail synthesizing what I can.

We want to post our draft of a plan on the CSL website no later than Monday morning to coincide with the public meeting re the comp plan.

Scott--Could you add this group to the e-mail list you're making up?

RA and Gene: Would you forward this to the PPG folks?

Anyone--send out broadly to others.

Thanks!

Olivia

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