How Your Voice Matters
Establishing Vision and Goals
The success of the SA Tomorrow Sub-Area Plans depends on broad participation from area stakeholders. To ensure this success, City staff worked with a wide range of community members throughout the planning process. These included neighborhood associations, business and property owners, residents, employers, educational and cultural institutions, public and nonprofit organizations, and other City departments to create a realistic and implementable plan for the Midtown Regional Center.
The planning process was designed to create a “feedback loop” between the City and the community as the plan was developed. This approach ensures that the Sub-Area Plan reflects community values and priorities. A variety of tools and techniques were used to ensure that those interested were well-informed about the SA Tomorrow Area Plans; encouraged to participate in a range of stimulating events and activities; and engaged in providing constructive feedback on a preferred future.
For each public input exercise, this document describes what was asked, how the input was presented back to the stakeholders, and carried forward in further engagement exercises and eventually incorporated into the plan.
Results from the exercises and surveys are available in the website Documents Library and as an appendix to the Plan. In some cases, results have been summarized. Throughout the process, complete raw results from exercises have been posted on the plan webpage.
To facilitate public information and community participation, this website was created and made available to the general public on (insert date). The website includes a section for leaving comments which are sent directly to the project manager. These comments can be viewed here.
Establishing the Plan Framework and Recommendations
The Plan Framework map includes key physical improvements and strategic concepts that will influence development in the Midtown Regional Center. These include priority focus areas and mixed-use corridors; pedestrian, bicycle, and street improvements; and parks and open space recommendations.
The Midtown Regional Center Plan Framework was developed through a combination of technical analysis and community input. The Framework illustrates and outlines the overall long-term vision for the Midtown Regional Center, including areas where new development will be focused, key mobility improvements, opportunities for more parks and open space, and other “big moves” that will shape the future of the area.
At the beginning of the planning process, the project team studied the Midtown Regional Center to understand the history and development of the area as well as existing conditions. The Planning Team shared their input regarding area assets, opportunities, and challenges to develop a more nuanced undestanding of the Regional Center and the community’s values and priorites. City staff also conducted additional stakeholder and public outreach to capture input from a broad range of Midtown area residents. Through a series of facilitated work sessions and interactive exercises, the Planning Team provided input and direction that is reflected in the Plan Framework.
Over several months, project staff and the Planning Team worked collaboratively to build upon the Framework to identify the key priorities, improvements and strategies that will shape the plan and guide growth, development and investment in the Midtown Regional Center. Following Planning Team Meeting #8, the Planning Department held a series of meetings with members of the original neighborhood plan advisory teams for neighborhood plans that overlap with the Midtown Regional Center, and current neighborhood association board members. The results of these meetings, among a variety of other community input received through stakeholder meetings, small group discussions, and intercepts throughout the planning process, informed the Plan Framework. Following is a discussion of the primary Community Meeting and Planning Team excercizes that were used to inform each element of the Plan Framework.
During Planning Team Meeting #3, initial development opportunity areas were presented, and used to inform two, small group, map-based discussions that identified preliminary elements of the Plan Framework, including: preferred focus areas; mixed-use corridors; new park or plaza locations; trail, bicycle, and transit routes; intersection improvements; and gateways.
During Planning Team Meeting #4, the Planning Team discussed the intended purpose, character, and future building heights for focus areas and selected mixed-use corridors. During Community Meeting #3, participants were invited to provide input on the same focus areas and mixed-use corridor attributes discussed above. The results of these exercises were used to directly inform the focus areas and land use elements of the plan.
The Planning Team Meeting #3 Plan Framework mapping discussion informed the Mobility Framework. Community Meeting #3 offered two exercises to inform the Mobility Framework. In the first exercise, prominent streets were identified on the mobility framework diagram. Participants then voted using stickers with bus, car, and bicycle icons to symbolize what mode of travel they thought needed to be prioritized on each street. The other activity used a profile view image of a streetscape, and invited particiapnts to allocate space to alternative modes and alements of the streetscape, such as automobile travel lanes, turn lanes, alternative sidewalk widths, alternative bicycle facilities, and transit lanes. The results of the exercise were used to inform the Mobility Framework element of the Plan.
Planning Team discussions throughout the planning process and the results of Community Meetings #1 and #2 were used to inform the Amenities and Infrastructure Recommendations. A substantial amount of input on these topics was received through planning process exercises regarding assets, opportunities, vision, focus areas and mixed-use corridors, land use, and neighborhood priorities. Planning Team Meeting #6 included dedicated discussion through a mapping exercise to inform the Amenities and Infrastructure recommendations.
The initial draft future land use map was informed by community input from Community Meetings #1 and #2, and Planning Team Meetings #1 through #5. At Planning Team Meeting #6, the Planning Department introduced the proposed land use classifications to be used throughout San Antonio, as well as the methodology used to create the draft land use maps. Then the Midtown initial draft future land use map was presented and discussed, focusing on smaller areas of Midtown. At Planning Team Meeting #7, areas of Midtown that received less attention in Planning Team Meeting #6 were discussed, including areas adjacent to Broadway Street. Discussion in these meetings also informed land use policy concepts to accompany the future land use map. Feedback from these two meetings was used to present conceptual revisions to the future land use map at Planning Team Meeting #8, where additional feedback was obtained. The results of these meetings, and other input received throughout the planning process, were used to complete the future land use map and policy.
The Housing recommendations were informed by input received in Community Meetings #1 and #2, and Planning Team Meetings #1 through #8. Housing was a recurring topic of input throughout the planning process. Planning Team Meeting #5 included a presentation on initial draft housing concepts and dedicated discussion to inform housing recommendations. Community Meeting #2 included an exercise that invited participants to identify alternative types of appropriate housing for neighborhoods and for focus areas and mixed-use corridors.
The Economic Development recommendations were informed by input received in Community Meetings #1 and #2, and Planning Team Meetings #1 through #8. Planning Team Meeting #5 included a presentation on initial draft economic development strategies and dedicated discussion to inform economic development recommendations.
Over 100 engagement activities such as interviews, intercepts, & focus groups with stakeholders from the following groups:
5 Points Neighborhood Association
Alamo Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (AAMPO)
Beacon Hill Elementary School
Bihl House Arts
Bike San Antonio
Brackenridge Park Conservancy
City Council District 1
City Council District 2
City of San Antonio Center City Development and Operations
City of San Antonio Department of Arts and Culture
City of San Antonio Development Services Department
City of San Antonio Economic Development Department
City of San Antonio Metropolitan Health District
City of San Antonio Neighborhood and Housing Services Department
City of San Antonio Office of Historic Preservation
City of San Antonio Office of Innovation
City of San Antonio Office of Sustainability
City of San Antonio Parks and Recreation
City of San Antonio Transportation and Capital Improvements Department
Friends of San Pedro Springs Park
Esperanza Peace and Justice Center
Government Hill Alliance Neighborhood Association
Jumpstart Performance Company
Mahncke Park Neighborhood Association
Mantle Art Space
McCullough Avenue Consortium
Pan American Golf Association
San Antonio Botanical Garden
San Antonio College
San Antonio River Authority (SARA)
San Antonio Water System (SAWS)
St. Ann’s Church
St. Mary’s Street Business Owners Association
Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone #33 (Midtown) Board
Tobin Hill Community Association
Tobin Hill Neighborhood Association
University of the Incarnate Word (UIW)
Uptown Neighborhood Association
VIA Metropolitan Transit
Westfort Alliance Neighborhood Association