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BIG Picture Exhibition Highlights Master Plan

Published on July 26, 2016

Photo of BIG Picture Traveling Exhibition

After two years of planning and extensive community engagement, The BIG Picture will launch an exhibition next week for citizens to preview Huntsville’s new Comprehensive Master Plan. The exhibition comes as a prelude to the plan’s release this fall, and it will highlight the guiding principles for Huntsville’s growth, challenges to address, and present amazing opportunities for the future.

“When you walk through this exhibition, you see and hear the voices of Huntsville’s citizens,” said Mayor Tommy Battle. “We have a community-driven plan informed by facts and best practices. This will be our compass and catalyst moving forward.”

The BIG Picture incorporates citizen ideas with a thoughtful analysis of trends and data on changing demographics, economic conditions, education, recreation, health care, and culture and leisure.

Long-Range Planner Dennis Madsen, who led The BIG Picture process, says the plan embodies six principles for growth that are specific to Huntsville. These include:

  • Build a Live/Work Thrive Community
  • Expand a Sustainable, Resilient Economy
  • Design a Mobile and Accessible Transportation Network
  • Maintain a Network of Exceptional Education
  • Support Local Arts and Culture
  • Develop Healthy and Active Neighborhoods

Madsen says these guiding principles drive a host of topics important to residents: Business Incubators, Complete Streets and Transit Options like BRT, Urban Agriculture, Strip Recovery and Placemaking, Design Guidelines, Small Area Plans, Greenways/Bike Infrastructure/Sidewalk Network, Updated Zoning, Energy Resiliency/Security/Sustainability, Recreation Destination, Business and Community Associations, Economic Development, Town and Gown, and Aging in Place.

“The final plan rolls out this fall, and we emphasize that it is living, organic plan that will adapt as our City and needs change,” said Madsen. “The planning process has already directed our thinking about projects and priorities, and we look forward to embracing the full vision with our citizens and businesses.”

The exhibition kicks off with a community event on Tuesday, July 26, 6 p.m., in the fellowship hall at First Baptist Church, 600 Governor’s Drive. Mayor Battle will join City planners at the event to review the plan’s findings, provide tours, and answer questions. The exhibition will travel around the city through September. Locations and dates will be announced next Tuesday and posted at bigpicturehuntsville.com.