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Hayward open house to share vision for city’s future

HAYWARD — People’s eyes often glaze over when hearing the words “general plan,” but if you ask them what they want their city to look like in 25 years, most have suggestions.

Over the past 18 months, Hayward has been asking its residents the vision thing, and on Saturday, March 8, the staff will host an open house from 9 a.m. to noon to share the results.

The general plan often has been called a blueprint for future growth and development, though some question how people now can anticipate what the future may bring. Still, the overall direction helps the city make day-to-day decisions.

To get to the draft 2040 General Plan (named for the year it will expire?), city staffers held public workshops and Planning Commission and City Council study sessions. The liveliest discussion has been at the online community forum, www.Hayward2040.org, though it appears city planners may have tried to make the site dull while at the same time not checking their spelling. From the site: “What are your comments related to the enviornmental analysis for the draft General Plan?”

Now, you may be asking why you should get up early on Saturday and make yourself presentable. Seriously, this is something that affects all Hayward residents. At the open house, you’ll find a series of stations for the topics covered in the plan and that oh-so-popular EIR (that’s government-speak for environmental impact report, which is a boring way of saying that if a project could harm the environment, you’d better spell out what you’re going to do to make sure that doesn’t happen).

City staff members and consultants who worked on the general plan will be at the open house to answer questions. Overview presentations are planned every 45 minutes. It’s a drop-in event, so feel free to wander over from the Saturday farmers market any time during the three-hour event.

For those who don’t know, Hayward City Hall is at 777 B St.

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