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Woodbury Council Preview: Bielenberg Expansion, Communications Strategy, Legislative Update

The Woodbury City Council will meet for its first workshop of 2012 at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday.

The Woodbury City Council opened 2012 with a brief meeting last week, though it did include dozens of residents who turned out to .

On Wednesday, city leaders will get back to basics with a workshop meeting set for 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 18, at . The agenda includes:

Bielenberg Expansion

The city has been mulling plans for the expansion of the , and Wednesday’s discussion is expected to center on finding an architectural firm for the designs.

Plans call for permanent structure to replace the sports facility’s dome. A third sheet of outdoor ice may be considered among the plans, .

The work is expected to begin early in 2013 and be complete about a year later.

City staff has received six proposals from architects; the council will likely formalize a contract at its Jan. 28 meeting.

Communications Strategy

Council members occasionally discussed the city’s communications strategy for the past few months, most notably after Councilman Christopher Burns proposed as a way to reduce the city budget.

The agenda for Wednesday’s meeting indicates that the city will discuss three options: emphasizing print or electronic communications, or a mix of the two.

Much of the recent discussion has centered on the importance of the 10 newsletters the city produces each year at an annual cost of $67,400.

Legislative Initiatives

Representatives from the Municipal Legislative Commission, a 16-city coalition established in 1984 of which Woodbury is a part, are expected to discuss the group’s legislative priorities for 2012.

The session begins next Tuesday.

Phase 2 Development

The city has already that will open the door for the development in the area generally south and east of , known as the Phase 2 area of Woodbury.

Part of those plans is the Fields of Woodbury development, which the council is set to discuss Wednesday. The city has drawn considerable interest in the area from developers.

Phase 2 includes approximately 2,150 acres generally south of Bailey Road to the Cottage Grove border and extends from west of Radio Drive to east of Woodbury Drive. The area is planned for primarily residential development with a “community commercial service area” at Bailey Road and Radio Drive and a neighborhood commercial center at Dale Road and Woodbury Drive, according to a council memo.

The area includes enough land to accommodate approximately 600 units per year for 10 years.

Eric Berg January 17, 2012 at 10:31 PM
That's a LOT of land to be developed...over 3 square miles. Roughly 10% of the entire footprint of the city. (If you have trouble imagining the size of an acre, it's roughly the size of a football field) I can't remember how much development is supposed to come online in Cottage Grove's East Ravine project, but unless the two cities are on top of their game in terms of infrastructure, it's got the potential to be a horrible mess. The projects in CG and here in the `bury aren't contiguous, but with the lion's share of the economic activity occurring basically in strips adjacent to or near the major roadways (61/Valley Creek-494-94), you're going to have a lot of vehicle traffic not only along those high traffic corridors, but other roads within becoming even more congested (Bailey and Glen for east/west, Radio/Hinton, Woodbury Dr./Keats, and eventually Manning as north/south.) Some of these roads are more ready than others. I have more confidence in Woodbury than Cottage Grove, as Woodbury's planners are led by an actual planner while Cottage Grove's are led by an Economic Development person. I only met Howard Blin, the former community development director of Cottage Grove, a few times, but he seemed to know what it was all about.

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