Work continues on strategic plan for city of JamestownA cross-section of the community met Monday to continue strategic planning for Jamestown. Some ideas included a third fire station, a second overpass and developing self-esteem within the community.
A cross-section of the community met Monday to continue strategic planning for Jamestown. Some ideas included a third fire station, a second overpass and developing self-esteem within the community.
This meeting, again facilitated by Mayor Katie Andersen, was to identify potential projects to address weaknesses uncovered in the first meeting in which the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats were listed. Andersen told the group Monday the strengths and weaknesses were city government’s responsibility. The threats and opportunities were outside the city’s responsibility.
Then she asked for suggestions on projects.
A third fire station in the south part of the city will be necessary particularly if the southwest area expands, Fire Chief Jim Reuther said.
“The ISO rating is right on the borderline now,” he said. “We definitely need to put it in the planning.”
The ISO rating determines the availability of fire protection for residences and businesses within a certain distance. In turn, the rating influences the cost of fire insurance.
“So the burden would still fall on the property owners — either the cost of a new fire station or higher fire insurance,” Andersen said.
Reuther said a third fire station is also necessary due to the proximity of the railroad. The main fire station is located a half block away from the railroad tracks. The fire department’s hazardous material gear is at the main station. It’s very likely the railroad is hauling hazardous material through town, he said. Should a spill occur anywhere near the main fire station the hazmat gear could be unavailable.
The railroad going through town presents another problem as well. An identified weakness is getting across town with only one viaduct. Resident Jim Boyd suggested an overpass is needed.
Aging infrastructure had a number of projects and concerns listed under the heading. They included the sanitary and storm water systems as well as water distribution and storage. Another water tower was also included. Addressing alleyway encroachment, sanitation collection, sidewalks, snow removal and street lighting were on the list too.
“We’re identifying items that can go into a comprehensive plan,” Andersen said of the list.
A new Land Use and Transportation Study is also needed to project growth areas and transportation needs.
Consistent and regulated signage was also suggested as a project. Resident Delores Rath said Jamestown needs to be more user-friendly. She added that now that the City Council is getting more progressive that concern can be addressed in different ways.
In a small group brainstorming more potential projects, Rath said “We have so much here. We need to sell Jamestown — to our own people first.”
This lack of self-esteem regarding the community is another listed weakness.
“We need to portray this as a place you want to be instead of a place where you’re stuck,” said resident Dan Tweten.
Communication was mentioned as something the city could broaden. Several people said the new website is a vast improvement in portraying a more positive attitude. There are also other ways to inform — in and outside the community. Deb Kantrud, executive director for the South Central Dakota Regional Council, said her small group suggests utilizing the available sources such as access channels and social media better.
“As well as the website, use the social media to portray the community and to communicate more effectively,” she said.
Andersen agreed communication could be a city project.
She said the various projects and ideas would be grouped and teams set up to develop them further.
“Each council member will take the projects that fit into his portfolio and head up a team to come up with an implementation plan and a timeline,” she said.
The next meeting to work on the strategic plan will be Monday, March 28, in the lower level conference room of City Hall.
Sun reporter Toni Pirkl can be reached at (701) 952-8453 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org