Answers to Common Questions

1. What is One Decatur?

One Decatur is a process to involve the community in creating a new Comprehensive Plan for the City of Decatur. It will build off the city’s past plans, identify core critical needs, define a long-term vision for the community, and serve as a guide for future development.

2. What is a Comprehensive Plan?

A comprehensive plan is a strategic guide that expresses the values and aspirations of a community. It is the broadest public policy document our community can create and will set forth the long-range vision for development, housing, environment, economic development, transportation, and related topics. This document gives a universal view of the whole city, is a tool to prepare for change, and acts as both a business plan and guidebook for decision-makers. The Plan is not a legally binding document, but it serves as the foundation for the city’s budgeting process, zoning ordinances, land development regulations, etc. A separate effort to update those regulations will be undertaken to implement the Plan.

3. Why does Decatur need to update its Comprehensive Plan?

In general, planning represents good stewardship. There has never been a better time to consider our community’s values in light of local, regional and national trends, and develop well-supported policies to create the best possible future.

4. Who will lead the planning process?

A 40-member citizen steering committee has been established that will help guide the public process and the plan’s recommendations. Members were selected to reflect the city’s diverse backgrounds and interests in an open application process. Over 190 residents submitted applications! City staff is working closely with a planning consulting team to facilitate the steering committee’s work, convene public workshops, conduct technical work, and draft the plan.

5. Is there a role for residents to get involved?

YES! Anybody that cares about the future of Decatur will be able to participate and contribute their ideas and insight. There will be three rounds of engagement opportunities for face-to-face participation and online input during the 15-month process. The Listening & Learning Workshops are the first of these opportunities.

6. What will happen at the Listening and Learning Workshops?

In a two-hour workshop, you will learn about the plan and work with others who care about the community in small groups through idea generation and map-based activities. It’s a chance for you to have your say early on in the process about what is important to you.

7. Do I have to be an expert to contribute ideas?

You are an expert if you live or work in Decatur. Who knows the community better than someone who lives or works here? Everyone is encouraged to attend. Families are welcome.

8. Who is helping the City with this process?

A consultant team was hired and brings together expertise and national experience in public engagement, technical planning, sustainability and resiliency planning. The team consists of:

  • Planning NEXT: Lead Planning and Public Engagement
  • Goodwyn Mills and Cawood: Planning Support
  • Randall Gross / Development Economics
  • Kimley-Horn & Associates: Mobility Planning
  • Skipper Consulting: Traffic
  • Hoar Program Management: Implementation