The Prairie Village Planning Commission on Tuesday evening finalized a year-long timeline for the public to give feedback on a series of housing recommendations that have already garnered heated pushback from some residents.
Driving the news: The planning commission on Tuesday unanimously approved a general timeline that will include at least three public forums about the housing recommendations over the next year.
- Several planning commissioners on Tuesday night, including Nancy Wallerstein, voiced concerns about a timeline originally proposed by city staff that would have conducted the public feedback process over a more compressed timeframe, between October and February.
- Wallerstein called that “too aggressive” and like other commissioners called for more public forums to occur after the new year.
What was said: “We’ve had two years of no one going out, going to Christmas parties and everything like this — anything from mid-November through the first week of January, I think, is just a lost cause,” Wallerstein said.
Watch for yourself: A full video of the planning commission meeting can be found below.
- The housing recommendations presentation and subsequent discussion begins at 58:13.
Zooming out: Tuesday night’s planning commission discussion was the first action taken related to the ad hoc housing committee’s recommendations since the city council approved them in June.
- After that city council vote this summer, dozens of residents spoke out against the recommendations at the July 18 city council meeting, with many speakers claiming the recommendations, if adopted, would clear the way for more multi-family housing and apartments in the city.
- Dozens more voiced their concerns at the Sept. 6 city council meeting — and packed the council chambers and overflow room.
- City staff have since created a webpage aimed at correcting what the city says is misinformation regarding the housing recommendations and also to address residents’ concerns and keep the public apprised of next steps.
Key quote: “I think, I’m going to guess I’m speaking for multiple people, we’d like to maybe take a step back and think about the recommendations themselves and maybe further defining [sic] the problem we’re being asked to solve in our community,” Commissioner Melissa Brown said.
What happens next with Prairie Village housing recommendations
The planning commission will discuss the recommendations at a work session at the end of October. The next discussion on the city’s housing recommendations won’t occur until after the new year, in January 2023, and it will be a public forum.
- Another planning commission work session will occur after the first public forum.
- A second public forum to discuss the planning commission’s recommendations and take public feedback will be in March or April 2023.
- There will be another planning commission work session after that second public forum.
- A third public forum will then be held in June or July.
- City staff told commissioners that the public forums would include presentations, breakout sessions and group discussions.