The City of Burlington will host a series of open house meetings on Feb. 11, 18 and 25 at Veterans Terrace to discuss its Vision 2040 plan for growth. (City of Burlington graphic)

City’s planning process includes open houses on future growth

By Jason Arndt

Staff Writer

The City of Burlington is hosting a series of in-person, socially distant, open houses to discuss the Burlington Vision 2040 plan with a session scheduled from 1 until 4 p.m. on Thursday at Veterans Terrace, 589 Milwaukee Avenue.

For people unable to attend the first session, the open house will also be held from 1 until 4 p.m. Feb. 11 and Feb. 18, and from 4 to 7 p.m. on Feb. 25, according to city officials.

“During the open houses, we will share results from previous engagement efforts that have led to a preferred scenario and proposed vision for your city’s future,” the city states in an email to community stakeholders.

Residents and other stakeholders can register by visiting

Vision 2040, facilitated by Chicago-based The Lakota Group, said in an overview the city is undertaking a collaborative planning process with community residents and stakeholders to create a comprehensive plan.

“City of Burlington Vision Plan 2040 will outline important policies and strategies related to land use and development, downtown housing and neighborhoods, open spaces and natural resources, transportation, historic preservation, quality of life, infrastructure and capital improvements, and community sustainability and resiliency,” Lakota wrote in its overview.

The long-term planning process looks to use community assets such as the city’s traditional downtown area and neighborhoods, locations near the Fox River and nearby lakes, quality of life amenities and rich history.

The Comprehensive Plan, according to Lakota, will consider city efforts such as the downtown master plan, Racine County Multi-Jurisdictional Comprehensive Plan 2035, among a series of other plans already put in place.

The comprehensive plan, which consists of three phases, began last July when Lakota Group analyzed existing conditions to better the community.

From July through November, according to the plan’s first phase, Lakota Group officials conducted focus group discussions with local leaders, city officials, and business owners.

Since last November Lakota reviewed ideas, strategies, and concepts for long-term improvements and identified key opportunities within the municipality.

The next step will present these findings through open houses this month.

“As part of Phase 2, our team will conduct an open house, which will allow for a wide range of community input,” the Lakota Group states. “The range of ideas developed by the team, with feedback from the community, will evolve into defined plans and policies as we move into the Final Vision Plan 2040 Phase.”


Preferred scenario

Through group discussions, and input from participants, the Burlington Vision 2040 Plan selected progressive growth as a subregional center among four preferred scenarios presented.

Other scenarios considered included maintaining growth, managed growth for a bedroom community, and exponential growth with hopes of creating a regional center.

According to Lakota documents, the preferred scenario for progressive growth “envisions 2040 Burlington as a city that has experienced increased a progressive population and employment growth over the last 20 years.”

    A more comprehensive version of this story is available in the Feb. 4 edition of the Burlington Standard Press.