A community workshop last Thursday at the West Baton Rouge Parish Museum brought about 75 people together to discuss three projects for the implementation of the City of Port Allen’s Smart Growth Master Plan.
The three projects were: the Hwy. 1 Overlay District, the Court St. Overlay District and City Park. Those projects and more can be viewed at www.portallen.org or at the West Baton Rouge Parish Library.
Nathan Gaspard of Environmental Resources Management (ERM), the company that prepared the Master Plan, said the community workshop was really about figuring out “what things we need to do first.”
The majority of the workshop consisted of table discussions.
“If anything, it’s a wonderful healing exercise,” said Scott Gaudin, Chairman of the Master Plan Steering Committee.
Gaudin alluded to the turmoil of last year, where Port Allen city council meetings were divided by racial lines on either side of the room.
Gaudin said it was nice to see people working together at the workshop and everyone discussing the projects.
All five Port Allen city council members attended the workshop. In addition, Mayor Richard Lee, Chief Administrative Officer Adrian Genre, Police Chief Esdron Brown and City Inspector Mylan Lathers attended the workshop.
In all, about 75 people signed in.
Gaudin said the members of the Master Plan Steering Committee are: Christopher Grant, Lynn Robertson, Ray Helen Lawrence, Brandon Brown, Renee Lacour, Chris Ventre, Reynard Douglass, Liz Holmes and himself.
Gaudin said they meet about twice a quarter but that he hopes to meet more frequently.
At the end of workshop, after each table shared what they discussed for each project, Gaspard said, “This isn’t the end, this is the beginning. There’s still a lot of work ahead of us.”