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Farmington chooses to suspend comprehensive plan update amid COVID-19 restrictions

Hannah Grover
Farmington Daily Times

AZTEC — The Farmington City Council unanimously approved suspending work on the comprehensive plan update after the draft is released this December.

The City Council’s decision on Nov. 17 comes as the state is under a shelter-in-place order that restricts business operations and encourages people to remain at home as much as possible.

Ongoing restrictions limiting the number of people who can gather in one place have made it hard to gather public input while developing the plan that will serve as a roadmap for the city going forward.

This plan includes things like transportation planning and land use. It comes as the region, which has traditionally relied on fossil fuels for an economic base, faces a transition and leaders are working to diversify the economy.

All Veterans Memorial Plaza is seen, Thursday, Aug. 27, 2020, from across the river in Animas Park in Farmington.

Assistant City Manager Julie Baird said the update has been in the works for more than a year and was just gaining momentum when the COVID-19 pandemic hit the state.

Mayor Nate Duckett said it is important to complete the comprehensive plan update but he supported pausing the efforts until there can safely be more public engagement.

The last comprehensive plan was completed in 2002 as the population boomed in Farmington. The updated plan will provide a roadmap for city planning for the next two decades. 

Completion of the city's new comprehensive plan, a document intended to guide development in Farmington for the next 20 years, has been delayed because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The 2002 plan included revitalizing the downtown corridor and creating opportunities for multi-modal transportation, which can be seen in new bike lanes added to the city as well as the ongoing Complete Streets project in the downtown.

More information about the comprehensive plan can be found at fmtn.org.

Hannah Grover covers government for The Daily Times. She can be reached at 505-564-4652 or via email at hgrover@daily-times.com.

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