2012 Gig Harbor Visioning

Back in 2012, the Community demonstrated an overwhelming desire to protect downtown Gig Harbor from the relentless pressure to over-develop. The data gathered below shows the list of "preferred amenities" expressed by citizens during these well-attended Open House events.  A multi-plex of "35 high-income townhouses" and "3 high-income residential homes" were not on that list. 

Excerpts from Gig Harbor Comprehensive Plan:

Chapter 4 Community Design

Gig Harbor conducted a visioning forum to ask citizens what characteristics of their community they like best and what changes they would like to see take place. While a limited number of design concepts were presented, the forum was not structured to provide solutions as much as to receive public input on existing characteristics of the community. It was evident from the forum survey that citizens liked Gig Harbor's small town scale, and that they most favored development which reflected the town's historic form of architecture and which preserved the harbor's natural beauty.  The City has therefore adopted goals and policies to assure that future development respects and enhances Gig Harbor's built and natural environment.... (read more)

The City's 2012 graph below represents input from Open House attendees who expressed satisfaction with the scale and character of downtown but submitted a wish-list of additional services and amenities for the community.  (Each amenity on the list includes the number of people that voted.)  Nearly 300 citizens participated in the Visioning Process.

Attendees were also asked to provide words that best describe what would become the "Harbor Vision" adopted in December of 2012. As shown in descending order in the City's graph below, the top five qualities identified by the community were: Walkable, Views, Historic, Vibrant, and Character. 

Excerpts from Gig Harbor Comprehensive Plan:

Chapter 3  The Harbor

Gig Harbor's downtown is widely recognized as quaint, charming, and historic. And although the City's remaining historic structures are modest in size, materials, and form, they represent an important cultural identity that continues to draw visitors, shopper, and residents to the area. That draw created economic pressures on the City and ultimately required the City to grow in the North and Westside of town to accommodate the needs of the new citizens without impacting downtown character and form... (read more)

As a result of broad public input, the Harbor Vision was unanimously approved by City Council. (currently posted on the City's website)

Excerpt  from Council Bill - Dec 10, 2012 :

As part of this effort, over 80 individuals were interviewed, two town hall meetings were held to solicit public input (June 27th and October 18th), and members met with community groups such as the Chamber and Gig Harbor Waterfront Association (GHHWA).  The combined attendance for the town hall meetings was over 180 people.