Allegheny • Clarion River Valley Region (Blueprint Initiative)

Posts in category Goal 3

Goal 3 Meeting – 9.24.15

Marilyn & William McCall, Co-Chairs

Old Business

Foxburg Update


  1. Business District Facades – Marilyn McCall, Lisa & Sadye Bartley, Nadine Drake Leads
    • Color Schemes
    • Downtown Business District Inventories
    • 2015 Action Plan – Establish Guidelines for Facade Improvement Program
    • Banners for 3 Communities
    • Inventory of Utility Poles
    • Business District Planning Study
  2. Incentive Programs for Property Owners – Marilyn McCall, Chuck & Beth Gisselbrecht
    • Local Economic Revitalization Tax Act (LERTA)
    • 2015 Action Plan – Plass LERTA ordinances; Parker Completed
    • Others Identified?
  3. BLIGHT – Bill McCall, Chuck & Beth Gisselbrecht
    • 2015 Action Plan – Establish guidelines for blighted properties
    • Blight Definition
    • Blight Inventory
    • Blight Study ($8,000-$10,000)
    • Blight Plan
  4. Homeowners Programs – Marilyn McCall, Rev. Gary Brown, Habitat for Humanity
    • Update by Gary Brown
    • 2015 Action Plan – Explore first-time homeowners program
    • Habitat for Humanity
  5. Hughes Park & Parker Recreation Center – Marilyn McCall, Nancy Marano, Amy Whitehill, Rev. Gary Brown
    • Hughes Park
      2015 Action Plan – Secure Funding to Develop Improvements to the Emlenton Hughes Park Site Plan
    • Parker Recreation Center
      2015 Action Plan – Explore Developing a Recreation Center

      1. Catholic Church Property sold
      2. Level Works Property sold
  6. Land & Building Acquisition – Marilyn McCall, Nadine Drake
  7. Workforce Development – Marilyn McCall, Lisa Bartley
    • 2015 Action Plan – Hold workforce development meetings with A-C Valley School District and C4
    • 2 New Programs – On Hold at A-C Valley School Superintendent’s Request
    • School Counts Program
  8. Student Municipal Liaison – Marilyn McCall, Cindy Rapp
    • Counsel Appointments
    • Committee Involvement
  9. Other
    • Letters of Support – Marilyn McCall – NEED FOR REGIONAL PROJECTS
    • Parker Comprehensive Plan Update – Marilyn McCall
    • Cell Phone Service on the Trail

New Business

Next Meeting is Thursday, October 22nd at 6:00 p.m. in Allegheny Grille unless otherwise noted.

Blueprint Core Team Meeting – October 29th at 2:00 p.m. in the Crawford Center

Goal 3 Meeting – 8.27.15

The Blueprint Community Initiative’s Goal #3 Team (Develop the Regions as a Well – Know Destination for Raising a Family ) has received cost estimates from two firms that toured Parker and Emlenton.

The first estimate, from EG&G/CT Consultants, was priced at $100,000 for Parker and $98,000 for Emlenton. This would provide an elaborate plan and is considered way out of the ballpark on price — or in other words, it is unaffordable.

The 2nd estimate from Mullin & Lonergan offers us 3 options, which are described below:

Alternative 1 – Expand upon the existing Blueprint Community Plan and identifynew “impact” projects for each community that aligns with the objectives of the Strategic Plan. This alternative would be an exercise in”project planning” rather than a comprehensive assessment of each community’s needs. The firm would take stock of existing conditions and meet with downtown and municipal officials to identify one block or a series of buildings that constitute an “impact” project for each community. An impact project is a multi-component, comprehensive project that addresses commercial, residential, and public infrastructure needs. For example, there may be one or more buildings in the downtown that would be suitable for substantial rehabilitation. The project may involve ground floor commercial rehab with rehabilitation of upper floor space for residential apartments. Another component of the project may involve streetscape improvements and/or green way/tourism/recreational enhancements. Yet another component may involve reinvestment in each downtown (Main Street Program) or residential neighborhood immediately contiguous to a downtown (Elm Street project). The goal would be to assemble State, County, and local financing to carry out a concentrated project in each of the downtowns. A realistic budget for this type of assignment would be in the $25,000 – $30,000 range. This type of study could be completed in about 6 months.

Alternative #2: Implementable Comprehensive Plan. This would involve a complete update to each municipality’s Comprehensive Plan to meet the PA Municipalities Planning Code. However, the plan would be prepared with a clear emphasis on the state’s new implementable planning approach. This approach would identify key projects, based on community input within each municipality, and provide a detailed road map towards implementation to ensure that each project is completed. Typically, each municipality would identify two or three high priority projects that would be targeted for implementation.

The approach would involve:

  • Phase I: Pre-Planning would consist of a process to learn about current community assets and challenges facing the municipalities. In this first step,the firm’s team members would conduct a drive-through of each of the communities noting their impressions (as outsiders) of what appears to work well and what doesn’t. Their findings would be hand-illustrated on a series of large scale maps used as the basis for the first Community Meeting in each community. During this engagement, they would present their findings to the attendees and listen to their feedback, and ask if they missed any important issues.
  • Phase II: Planning would involve an in-depth analysis of data resulting in the core of the comprehensive plan. Three Community Meetings would be scheduled during this phase and all work would be vetted to gain initial feedback and refine presentations. The end product of this phase would be a draft implementable, comprehensive plan.
  • Phase III: Design would include the creative community design work. Once the Phase II work is well underway, the firm’s design team members would initiate urban and community design examples illustrating how specific components of the land use patterns could be enhanced in each community.Schematic drawings would be used to convey best practices in urban design, with thought given to how design concepts could influence future zoning ordinance updates. The work generated in this phase would be folded into the Comprehensive Plan (Phase II).
  • Phase IV: Adoption of Plan would include the Municipal Planning Code required steps to adopt the Comprehensive Plan by each municipality.

A realistic budget for this type of assignment would be in the $70,000 -$80,000 range. A project of this magnitude would require about a year to complete.

Alternative #3: State Main Street/Elm Street Plan. This alternative would be designed specifically to achieve PA DCED’s Main Street and/or Elm Street designation for each business district and/or surrounding residential neighborhood. The firm would assist in preparing an application for Main Street and/or Elm Street Planning funds.

The components of this plan would include:

  • Development of an organizational vision/mission statement
  • Preparation of a base map of the study area
  • Surveys and/or interviews of property owners, business owners, stakeholders, residents, community based organizations and City/Borough officials
  • Assessment of the local market trade area
  • A design element that includes guidelines and procedures for a local façade incentive program
  • Development of a 5-year strategy that includes implementation timelines, budget estimates, and revenue projections
  • Development of a long-term fundraising plan
  • Recommendations for zoning and comprehensive plan revisions
  • A clean,green, and safe element to address security, litter, graffiti removal,maintenance, and upkeep of existing structures

State Main Street/Elm Street planning grants are funded at $25,000. Once funded, A State Main Street Plan could be completed in 8 months.

It is possible to blend features from each of the above alternatives to create a scope of service that addresses each municipality’s needs and is within the community’s budget.
The company suggests a follow-up telephone call or meeting to discuss this letter. They may also want to have a discussion with PA DCED representatives,such as Denny Puko, to assist in guiding and applying for state planning grant funds. Once the scope of service is finalized, the firm would be happy to submit a formal proposal or price quotation.

If you have questions or comments or concerns regarding the outcome of this meeting, please email Bill or Marilyn McCall at

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