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Sun, Sept. 15

Site of future downtown in Chino up for talks

Monday, during the Chino Valley Town Council's retreat, Mayor Jim Bunker will ask the council if it will support his Economic Development Committee's wish to designate an area where it wants the town's future downtown to be.

Designating a future downtown area was one of five goals the committee approved Thursday. The other four are: Bring more jobs to town; create sewer and water improvement districts; convince a large retailer to locate in Chino Valley; and solve business/town hurdles problems.

During Thursday's meeting, committee members asked Bunker to see if the council will designate about 1,000 acres west of Old Home Manor as the site for the town's future downtown area.

Dan Main, a former mayor, said the town needs to designate at least 1,000 acres now for the town's future downtown so the area is developed as a planned development. Bunker said a physical description needs to be given to whatever area is chosen for the future downtown area.

Town Manager Jerry Stricklin said the town should have one downtown area with nodes of commercial and industrial sites throughout the town.

Stricklin said wherever the future downtown is located it should not have a major highway running through it. "We want something off the highway, like the town office area," he said.

Bunker said once the bypass is completed the town's dynamics will change completely.

Committee member Charlie Arnold said, "We know the town is going to grow east when the extension comes. Building the new downtown there would give the town the opportunity to lease part of Old Home Manor for industry as it has all the utilities there."

Stricklin said the town can have the new downtown locate there by default or can plan properly for it.

Arnold said by planning for the new downtown it would reduce hurdles for people wanting to locate there.

The committee will tackle the question of how to bring more jobs to Chino Valley at its 2 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 8 meeting in the Council Chambers.

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