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Big Picture Planning Key For Baxter’s Development Demands

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Big Picture Planning Key For Baxter’s Development Demands

Water and sewer are the main concerns when it comes to Baxter’s rapid growth affecting utilities.

City Engineer Tom Bennett said that’s why he asked the Baxter Planning Commission to better define the process of approving subdivision developments. He said that first phase of the city’s Wastewater Treatment Plant project will help meet some of the development demands

“Really the next focus for the city is going to be to look at the bigger picture of their wastewater treatment system that would be beyond what is being planned,” Bennett said. “So that they can really begin to address the bigger picture longer-term capital needs that they have.”

Bennett said there is also a need to take the city’s infrastructure into consideration with these larger subdivisions. He said that the city has to try and stay ahead of the curve and look at potential projects in a way that allows them to make decisions about their future and when things need to happen to accommodate them.

“I think the importance here is to just say, that these projects, you know you have to look at these from a big picture perspective,” Bennett said. “Especially as they’re getting more significant in Baxter in size and complexity. So this is really a demonstration of the city’s desire to stay ahead of the curve and to make sure that they don’t find themselves in regulatory issues or try to minimize those issues and to really continue what they started going on five years ago, to begin to really look at this stuff and look at long-term capital planning.”

Bennett said that this allows them to prevent putting burdens on existing ratepayers. He said that while there may need to be development contributions for infrastructure that may need to come with this, it’s important to stay in front of the issue.


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