Video: Urban Design Discussion with Planning Board, Zoning Revisions Committee, Northampton Design Forum and West Street Design Committee, 11/12/09

Here is a video of a portion of the 11/12/09 meeting of Northampton’s Planning Board. This segment includes a “discussion about design issues with: West Street Design Committee, Northampton Design Forum, Zoning Revisions Committee.” This video was recorded by Adam Cohen and is 1 hour 33 minutes long.

See also:

Paradise City Forum: Smith College Expansion

Northampton Office of Planning and Development: West Street Planning

Northampton Redoubt: “Green Street by Ken Mitchell”

Northampton Design Forum

Download Envisioning Sustainable Northampton – Final Notre Dame Studio Presentation Book

Envisioning Sustainable Northampton: Notre Dame Urban Design Presentation – Video and Handout

Video Highlights from the 10/19/09 Mayoral Debate: Wetlands, King Street, Infill and the BID

Question: Talk about a mistake you have made and what you learned from it

…Higgins: Would like to separate the zoning of northern King Street from southern King Street; regrets how last year’s school strategic planning devolved into a struggle over whether to close an elementary school


Question: “Every town and city in the United States wishes they had more open space in their downtowns, believing that even little parks or open areas make a city more livable. They also attract people who want to live or frequent that city. Seemingly, Northampton does not have the same outlook as other communities. How did the infill theory for growth of the business district morph into an infill theory for all of the residential areas that surround the business district? Besides local developers and real estate agents, how does this infill benefit the current citizens and taxpayers of Northampton who live in these areas?”

Higgins: “I agree with Councilor Bardsley that we need to think about design standards. I think we need to think about density…and I think we need to think about things like greenspace and trees.” 

Bardsley: “I think we need design standards… Infill isn’t simply cramming in buildings.”


Gazette: “Displaced Ward 3 councilor reflects on outcome” (11/5/09)
…Also working against Reckman, [Valley Street resident James] Nash believes, was a controversial development off North Street that has been vigorously opposed by neighborhood residents. Nash cited the Planning Board’s approval of that project after months of wrangling as the source of voter dissatisfaction with Reckman.

“Bob saw this as a private-property issue and he steadfastly refused to get into the political shouting match that’s gone on around it,” he said. “I have no doubt that his refusal to get involved with that affected his chances of getting re-elected.”