Steamboat Springs Residents have four days to return comment forms that will help direct key decisions on how the community plans to grow.
For about a month, residents have had the chance to pick up and fill out questionnaires as part of the Steamboat Springs Area Community Plan update process. Friday is the deadline for returning the questionnaires.
The questionnaires are included in the Key Choices and Direction Packet, a packet of information about the area and the community plan update.
The questionnaire touches on a variety of topics such as growth rates, traffic congestion and big box retailers.
City Planner Tom Leeson said about 40 questionnaires have been returned out of 350 packets the city has handed out. He said packets have been coming in every day and he expects a rush as the deadline approaches. The packets can still be picked up at the city and county planning departments.
"The more we get back, the better feedback we will have, bottom line," Leeson said.
Leeson said the comment forms are not intended to be a scientific survey where if choice "A" received two more votes than choice "B," the plan will definitely go with choice "A." He said the questionnaire is simply a tool that is helpful in gathering community feedback and combining that feedback with the work done by the 10 community working groups, city staff, county staff and hired consultants Clarion Associates.
The Key Choices and Direction packet represents almost a year's worth of discussion by the community working groups. The packets focus on land use, growth management; community design; transportation; natural, scenic and environmentally sensitive areas; open space, recreation and trails; economic development and sustainability; historic preservation; housing; and capital facilities.
"It is really important that we do get the (questionnaires) back so we can understand what the community's sentiment is," Leeson said.
Those working on the update have made several presentations in the community to organizations like the chamber, school district and the arts council. A public meeting was held a week ago, and presentations were made to the Routt County commissioners, the county Planning Commission, the City Council and the city's Planning Commission.
"The presentations, I think, were an effective medium to get the document out to the community," Leeson said.
Leeson said he has not looked at the packets to gauge what directions the community is leaning toward and did not get a sense during the community meetings.
The next step is for the city staff and consultants to look at the questionnaires and then to begin working on a draft of the update.
The update, which is expected to be finish in late May or early June, will include the choices from those packets and decisions made by the working groups and polices to implement those directions.
"This is a very comprehensive document," Leeson said. "This is really where the rubber hits the road. It is actual policy and steps."