After nearly two months the Paradises Valley 2022 General Plan Community Survey closed on Monday, March 1.
A total of 386 community surveys were completed, which equates to over a 95% confidence level with a 5% margin of error. The community survey consisted of 22 questions designed to glean resident’s thoughts on life in Paradise Valley, as well as examine the existing vision, values and goals from the current 2012 General Plan.
The mapping survey, which allowed residents to provide geographic based feedback on a map of the town, had a total of 211 unique users who visited the mapping site multiple times for a total number of 497 visits that resulted in multiple comments about specific challenges and opportunities for locations throughout the town.
The survey respondents evenly represented all areas of the community, was balanced between residents who have lived in Paradise Valley more than 20 years vs less than 20 years and showed a large majority of those who participated in the survey self-identified as being 55 years and older.
When asked why they choose to live in Paradise Valley the most common responses chosen included: low density housing (1-acre lot minimums), the aesthetic beauty of the natural environment (mountain views), and safety.
Furthermore 98% of respondents rated the overall quality of life in Paradise Valley as “good” or better with 70% of those respondents rating the quality of life as “excellent.”
The majority of residents expressed the most positive recent trends experience in Paradise Valley as being: protection of the 1-acre residential development, undergrounding of overhead utilities, natural open space and resource preservation, and public safety services. Conversely, the most concerning recent trends that were top of mind included: the prevalence of short-term rentals, traffic congestion, the raising of lots and building pads, and lot splits.
The survey also sought feedback on several broad topics that must be addressed in the General Plan that included: Land Use and Community Character, Circulation and Open Space, Environmental and Water Resources, and Community and Public Services. Overall, residents expressed that it is very important to address protection of mountain views, continue the conservation of open space and mountain lands, monitor water providers, and support improvement to telecommunication and mobile networks.
The results of the entire survey can be found on the “Documents” page of the project website: pvtogether2022.com.
All this feedback will be used to inform the decision-making process as specific sections (or elements) of the General Plan are drafted over the next few months. However, the town has already been working to address some of these topics including working at the state level to address legislation relating to managing short-term rentals and drafting new Town Code language to address building pad heights.
Other issues and comments that stood out in the survey as perhaps needing deeper discussion and vetting of the issues will be the topics for our next outreach efforts — “Discussion Hubs.”
There are two Discussion Hubs planned for April and both, due to the continued COVID restrictions, will be conducted as virtual public events.
Discussion Hubs will provide residents a forum for deeper discussion on the following specific topics and issues:
April 14 Discussion Hub No. 1: Mobility & Connectivity
April 28 Discussion Hub No. 2: Quality of Life
These Discussion Hubs will be hosted by the town’s consultant so there will be no live streaming available. If you want to participate you must access the zoom meeting by the online or phone connection.
Video of these two public events will be posted afterwards on the project website.
There will be plenty more opportunities to share your thoughts in the year ahead. The project website: pvtogether2022.com is still your best source for all General Plan related information.
Editor’s Note: Loras Rauch is special projects planner for the Town of Paradise Valley.