This major revision of the City’s comprehensive plan was completed in parallel with the massive Destination Medical Center effort. The City made a clear commitment to engaging the community’s diverse range of stakeholders from across residents, businesses, healthcare system employees (including the thousands commuting from the Twin Cities daily), and patients and visitors.
Working with prime contractor Hoisington Koegler Group, the initial stages introduced stakeholders to comprehensive planning, its relationship with the City’s future, and the intersection with other efforts. We gathered baseline sentiment about the present and future and some initial perspectives on trend data; input on strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats; and input on two kickoff topics central to Rochester’s future. Contributions were gathered via in-person, community- and City-hosted sessions using self-administered “Toolkits” and via an online survey with identical content.
In the next stage, stakeholders saw current development trends and a scenario of what the future might look like if those trends were projected forward. Community members reviewed and provided in-depth input on those implications through large-scale workshops with volunteer table-top facilitators. Building off of learnings from the trends analysis and community discussion, alternative scenarios were developed for community members to review and offer feedback on scenarios and desired outcomes via in-person sessions and an interactive online tool.
In the final stages, community members reviewed the draft comprehensive plan prior to it moving through the formal adoption process. After every stage, we supported participation with partner-provided prepared comprehensive analyses and compilations for the website and community/city distribution lists, making clear how stakeholders were directly shaping the future of their own community.