Input sought on Southwick open space

SOUTHWICK – The Southwick Open Space Planning Commission (SOSPC) is seeking public input this week on a revised open space and recreation plan.
Ann Capra of the Pioneer Valley Planning Commission has been working on an updated version of the plan for several months and will ask for input tomorrow at 7 p.m. in the Land Use Hearing Room at Town Hall.
Dennis Clark of the SOSPC said the town received a grant for Capra’s work, which will in turn allow the town to receive future grants.
“There are open space grants that require an improved plan,” said Clark. “Every five years it has to be updated.”
Southwick’s plan was last updated in 2007.  However, Clark said it was a “quick update” and there was much work needed to bring it current.
“We have added the Rail Trail, which gets a lot of use,” said Clark.
At the beginning of the summer, an online survey was launched to seek input on recreational use in town. Tomorrow night, the public can once again offer their input on Southwick’s open space and recreation.
“The last time we did something like this, we had a half-dozen people come out, which wasn’t a lot, but we got some good input,” said Clark.
Clark said he hopes the new improved plan will be in place for an extended time.
“Hopefully it will be approved for seven years, instead of five,” said Clark.
Capra has met with various departments and boards throughout the summer. Clark said it was crucial to get input from officials, especially the Southwick Planning Board.
“The last time, the planning board did not endorse the plan so we wanted to make sure the planning board was involved this time,” Clark said.
Capra has said it is important to have the public’s input on the Goals and Objectives in the Open Space and Recreation Plan.

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