Monday, September 2, 2013 , Updated 9:00 a.m., September 3, 2013
Allen officials ask residents to comment online about city plan
Residents will have about a month to post on the site, as it will shut down September 29.
The city of Allen is using an online forum to gather input from citizens on updating its comprehensive plan.
The site – allenideas.com – will launch Tuesday on MindMixer, a networking platform clients use to solicit ideas from the public through questions, polls and an open exchange that allows users to post their own ideas.
The site currently only has a welcome message displayed. An example of how it will function upon launch can be found at engagedenton.com, a site the city of Denton established through the service.
When updating their comprehensive plans, cities typically hold town hall meetings at a city building to gather public input. Allen plans to use allenideas.com as a digital replacement it hopes will be more convenient for citizens and does not have a meeting scheduled.
“It provides a way for us to reach a larger segment of the population than we might otherwise be able to do through having a town hall meeting on a Thursday night,” said Lee Battle, assistant director of community development.
City staff members from different departments will monitor the site to respond to comments and to ensure accurate information is being presented, Battle said. Residents will have about a month to post on the site, as it will shut down September 29.
The city's comprehensive plan, which serves as a guide for community development, was created in 2003. The update will cover topics such as transportation, housing and economic development, according to a city release. It will take about three months to complete and will conclude with final approval from the Allen City Council.
“One of the important components in [updating the plan] is getting input from the public about the community and what people like and what they think the community needs to be focused on in the future,” Battle said.
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