TRPA continues discussion this week on Regional Plan Update, transect zoning
June 22, 2010
STATELINE, Nev. – A local environmental oversight agency will continue this week to explore an overhaul of planning practices which will have a dramatic impact on the future of development in the Lake Tahoe Basin.
On Wednesday, June 23, the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency governing board will continue discussion of the Land Use milestone of the Regional Plan Update, a carry-over from last month when officials were unable to contain the lengthy talks into a single day of meetings.
The centerpiece of the Land Use milestone is a staff-recommended shift from Plan Area Statements to Transect Zoning, which officials say will allow for more local control of development issues and shift much of the development into condensed urban cores with a focus on pedestrian accessibility and mixed residential and commercial use.
Also on Wednesday, the board will discuss transportation issues, which dovetail with Land Use topics in that the agency will discuss policies which will lay the groundwork for more pedestrian- and bicycle-friendly town centers while promoting an increased use of public transportation.
TRPA Spokesman Dennis Oliver said curbing the use of private motor vehicles is a major strategy in combating diminishing lake clarity, as much of the fine sediment which enters the lake and compromises Tahoe results from fine sediment from roadways and paved parking lots.
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On Thursday, June 24, the governing board will devote day two to its new strategic realignment of the agency.
The TRPA recently laid off 5 employees in an effort to reconfigure staff, streamline operations, increase efficiency and effectiveness and instill more business-like practices into the agency.
“This is the first major organizational change the agency has gone through in its 40-year-old history,” Oliver said.
Joanne Marchetta, who assumed the helm at TRPA approximately a year ago, has enacted a multi-layered cultural shift within the agency – the foremost layer being a shift from categorically anti-development policies to working with the private sector to effect environmental redevelopment.
After an initial period of assessment, the agency is beginning to implement changes. On Thursday, Marchetta will discuss those changes and how the mid-June layoffs represent an organizational commitment to a new agency-wide method of operation.