Knoxville, Iowa, was due to update their comprehensive plan. It had nearly been 20 years since it was first written, and much had changed in the city during that time. The city had developed several park and trail plans, housing studies and other strategic planning efforts, but none had presented the community with a holistic approach for long-term change. Knoxville also faced the challenge of repurposing the shuttered Veterans Administration Hospital, a 130-acre campus with over 30 buildings in need of serious repair.
Our Planning team was brought on to write the city’s comprehensive plan update. First, we identified and engaged the public as local experts for their community’s needs. Over 500 people participated in the planning process through public input meetings, focus groups, and online surveys. Then, our plan focused on how to leverage strong local employers– 3M, Weiler, and Hormel Foods – to grow their population while improving quality of life.
The resulting comprehensive plan takes an integrated, long-term approach to sustaining and improving the City of Knoxville. Through robust community engagement and the incorporation of public feedback into the plan, the city’s plan has broad community support that helps local leaders implement the critical projects identified for the town, like repurposing the VA Hospital.