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We seem to be on the right track compared to others
It's good to hear Nashville's town government is planning for the future.

We reported in last week's Graphic that the town's Comprehensive Plan Task Force is moving forward with plans to map out Nashville's needs for the next 20 years, obtaining assistance from skilled planning professionals as well as involving citizens of the town.

It's more than obvious that Nashville and the immediate surrounding areas are exploding with new residential growth.

Long-range planning is key to handling this growth and being prepared for what is to come.

So many other areas have ignored signs of growth and have ended up having to put a halt to development due to not being able to provide services such as fire and police, or infrastructure, to the increased population.

Just recently, I read that Johnston County is proposing a plan to manage its growth. The county has seen an 80 percent increase in its population over the past 15 years. They're proposing to restrict new development to one home every two acres rather than the current 1.5 units per acre, which means a 100-acre development drops from 150 homes to 50 homes.

Area developers and citizens are saying this proposed plan will send housing prices through the roof and put an end to the county's growth. The plan will eat up more land with less housing, therefore costs for water and sewer will increase, cutting out a lot of poorer folks from obtaining homeownership, which may be their goal.

The county is concerned that it will not be able to keep up with the rapid growth in areas such as schools and highways.

Wake Forest seems to also be in a pickle, services such as fire and police are strained due to extreme growth.

Cary, on the other hand, is seeking to intensify development, getting more people in less space, adding multiple floors, and increasing open space, such as parks.

Yes, planning is key. Sure, it's hard to make projections and budget for what is to come, especially when the tax dollars won't arrive until the growth does. But it's something we have to do.

Our growth has been steady and is projected to continue increasing in the future. Hopefully with eyes on the issues now, we can plan for what is to come and not be caught in a situation similar to that of Johnston County.

One town that's a fine example of closing its doors to economic prosperity due to residential growth is Louisburg. It seems that officials there kept their eyes closed for years, not seeing what was happening all around them, and now businesses are moving away. Even the hospital is planning to move out of town. From what I understand, the town's plan for growth added so many regulations, they've planned themselves right into a depression.

Franklin County has experienced tremendous growth over the years but instead of taking advantage of the growth and encouraging economic development, Louisburg has literally shut its doors.

Looking at these areas in comparison, sounds like we're on the right track.

Hopefully the town will continue involving citizens through its comprehensive planning process and develop plans to benefit Nashville economically while making sure Nashville remains a great place to live.

There will be some tough issues to face while making plans for 20 years of growth, but trust me, it will be easier to face those issues now than later when it's too late.

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