Category: Planning-MPC

Is a 2-story 90000′² Storage Facility Headed for Madison Park?

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madison-park-site_plan_frontby John E. Settle, Jr.

The Shreveport Caddo Metropolitan Planning Commission[Staff Report – Site Plan Supplied] will review an application by Ricky Lennard to build this massive facility that will, in effect, occupy the parking lot north of Marilyn’s Restaurant to the Madison Park Exxon station on Wednesday at 3pm. This facility will have 400 to 450 storage units that will be available for customers 7 days a week, and Lennard estimates that 30 customers a day will visit the facility. If constructed as planned, access to the Campbell’s Television Shop and the old El Chico’s may be limited to Greg Street.

madison-park-site_plan_overheadlimitedLennard has a high dollar option to Read more

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MPC Fox in Henhouse – Bad Ethics!

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Ethics, Right!
Ethics, Right!

by Marion Marks

Mr. Ronnie Remedies, the Vice Chair and board member of the Shreveport Metropolitan Planning Commission (MPC), appears to have violated the Louisiana Code of Governmental Ethics, and both Mr. Remedies and Mr. Alan Young, Chair and board member of the MPC, have worked together to harm the City of Shreveport, the employees of city government and degrade the standards they were appointed to uphold and support.

Ronnie Remedies
Ronnie Remedies

The MPC Board approved a commercial site plan filed by “Raley & Associates, Owner, Mr. Remedies” for the commercial establishment at 1200 Marshall Street and specific stipulations were attached to the application in 2015. The significant issues violated at this building and improvements relate to drainage and landscaping requirements for the structure. The application packet that was submitted Read more

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Caddo Anticipates Diverse Transportation Plan

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Bicycle-Pedestrian Friendly Sidewalks
Bicycle-Pedestrian Friendly Sidewalks

by Marion Marks

The use of local funding to initiate a codified “Transportation Vision” for Caddo Parish seems to now be nearing approval. This vision required joint action by “Northwest Louisiana Council of Governments (NLCOG), the Metropolitan Planning Commission (MPC), the City of Shreveport, the Louisiana Department of Transportation & Development (LA DOTD), Caddo Parish Commission and other government entities.”

I became aware of this work when I filmed the Bicycle Forum last October [Draft plan] along with following actions of the various agencies mentioned above that was related to the ongoing plans. As I recently followed public emails that indicated this program may actually become a reality, I am finding that some of the money spent to educate public officials and staff was money well-spent!

From one email: “The reason the Caddo Parish/Shreveport Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plan was submitted to the federal government is because we recognized that what U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx outlined in his Transportation Vision was becoming and Read more

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Zika Virus Dangers in Shreveport

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This 2006 photo provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows a female Aedes aegypti mosquito in the process of acquiring a blood meal from a human host. On Friday, Jan. 15, 2016, U.S. health officials are telling pregnant women to avoid travel to Latin America and Caribbean countries with outbreaks of a tropical illness linked to birth defects. The Zika virus is spread through mosquito bites from Aedes aegypti and causes only a mild illness in most people. But there’s been mounting evidence linking the virus to a surge of a rare birth defect in Brazil. (James Gathany/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention via AP)

by William B. Wiener, Jr.

For all inhabitants of Shreveport, the City Council, and Mayor Tyler, the issues of the Zika virus will reach critical mass if we fail to understand the potential dangers and begin to address them properly. We must remember that in 1873 Shreveport was devastated by the Yellow Fever epidemic which killed one-fourth of Shreveport’s population.

Yellow fever is initially spread by mosquitoes, then human to human, and Yellow Fever is active today and potentially spreading Read more

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Shreveport Commons Funding Demands Transparency

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Decision ahead
Decisions ahead

by Marion Marks

Shreveport’s claims of concerns about our perceived character, growth, assimilation and legacy as far as working with others should be as much a concern to citizens as our concern about how we use federal, state and parish funding in development contracts. Jane Jacobs in addressing change in American cities in her 1961 The Death and Life of Great American Cities, as well as in other works, understood that urban planning guidelines gave her and all other citizens affected by changing city transportation routes and economic development a mechanism to fight improper use of government funding. Abusive tactics that bullied citizens cause Jacobs and her followers to use all available tools to demand transparency and public input before funds were spent. Jacobs understood that what was at stake was the very character of historic neighborhoods in the cities that she loved. She also understood that powerful force sought to use the system to steal the very soul of those cities as well as the public purse.[Prior Jane Jacobs article]

The Shreveport Commons plan seems too full of comparisons to the New York plan Jacobs fought that demand greater study and transparency. Just like the New York plan Jacobs opposed, “city planners” came to the table with plans and a cobbled together timetable to use public funding to create change that would seemingly fit the federal guidelines and mollify Read more

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On Losing Our Cities – A Parallel

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Jane Jacobs
Jane Jacobs, author, activist would be 100 today

by Marion Marks

Shreveport’s focus on the interstate 49 corridor to join the long-delayed north-south highway is tearing apart our city as we claim we are concerned with the character, growth, assimilation, legacy and potential for a historic section of our city. Author and activist Jane Jacobs who would have been 100 years old today expressed thoughts on the soul of American cities in her 1961 The Death and Life of Great American Cities that is a rebuttal of much urban planning that remains too prevalent even now. In today’s quest for optimizing city transportation routes that promote economic development over saving the cultural character and neighborhoods in the city, we have lost our soul.

City planners too often come to the table with suitcases of study that are no more than expert witnesses who travel to pedal an economic posture to support one developer over another, greedily seeking to mine federal funds and local wallets. The soul of Shreveport, just as Moses-Highway-BLDZRthe soul of Garden City in Jacobs text, is a set of historically established neighborhoods that are defined by Read more

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DOES CADDO COMMISSION APPOINTMENT OF THERON JACKSON TO MPC REFLECT A NEED TO VET POTENTIAL APPOINTEES?

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John Settle-Opinion-May 2015Should an individual with an outstanding judgment to the State Board of Ethics for campaign fines be appointed to a local commission? Or an outstanding judgment to the credit bureau? How about a conviction for simple battery that involved an alleged sexual encounter with a young lady who he had hired? And should Commissioners advise the board if the suggested appointment is a fellow church member? How about a person before the commission, should they be asked if any embarrassing revelation will be revealed should they be chosen? The nature of these should not only be embarrassing to Caddo citizens, but it is embarrassing to have to even discuss them for a candidate to serve on a public board.

Unfortunately these issues were not addressed at the recent Caddo Commission meeting on March 17 when the Commission chose a candidate to fill an open seat on the MPC. Theron Jackson was voted over other qualified candidates to the Caddo Shreveport Metropolitan Planning Commission to fill that open position.Theron Jackson-lectures

Jackson has an outstanding civil penalty of $4,000 to the Louisiana Ethics Board for failure to file campaign finance reports; this is now a 2011 judgment filed in Caddo records that would be easy for any citizen to research. Jackson also has a 2010 judgment for $2,540 filed in Read more

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The Trump-Sanders Rage Has Roots With Caddo Commission –– Commissioner Linn Questioned

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believeby Marion Marks

You have to believe in something, everybody does, and even atheists have a belief in their unbelief. Yet rage and anger has a new voice in both national political parties against those who have abused the system and citizens. Too many incumbents and players who believe the political process is a personal playground or piggybank draw enough fire to quench the anger of voters who feel tarring and feathering would be a good start.

money-manners-morals-integrityVoters have such a frail moral vision that when an elected official follows a righteous path that benefits the public, corrects wrongs and bases decisions on a belief that justice can be accomplished, the official generally ends up being ridiculed and required to prove himself guiltless. It’s almost as if voters expect officials to sell out to porn vendors, massage parlors and gambling interests.

When a commissioner, namely the current Caddo Commission President, Matthew Linn, questions past actions that have sold out citizen interests, the first question is to demand that his Read more

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GET READY FOR PR BLITZ BY PORT FOR APRIL 9 TAX RENEWAL

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John Settle-Opinion-May 2015Yep, its that time again—for Caddo (and for a change Bossier) voters to have another special election’ for a tax renewal. Not that there are not enough special elections in what is almost a home grown Louisiana sport— tax elections on dates that do not coincide with regular elections. This time the vote is to renew a 2.5 millage for the Caddo Bossier Port on April 9th.

On April 3, 1993, the voters of Caddo and Bossier Parishes approved a special tax of 2.5 mills to be levied on the property subject to taxation in the Port Area, consisting of Caddo and bossier Parishes for a period of twenty -five (25) years, commencing with the year 1993. The purpose of the tax was for site acquisition and for constructing, acquiring, improving and equipping docks and wharves, transfer and storage facilities, commercial and industrial facilities and other port, transportation and infrastructure facilities and improvements with the Port. The revenue from this tax has increased from $2 million in 1995 to over $6 million in 2014. In 21 years over $80 million has been generated by this assessment.

port of shreveport bossier
port of shreveport bossier

The Port has approximately 700 acres of it’s 2300 hundred acres owned left for development; only 145 of these are contiguous which limits Read more

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CADDO COMMISSION PRESIDENT LINN STARTS OFF WITH POWER GRAB FOR NLCOG SEAT

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John Settle-Opinion-May 2015In less than 2 weeks as the new president of the Caddo Commission, Matthew Linn has caused quite a stir—as well as a wave of embarrassment for the Commission—by his actions, both as a Commissioner and as the president of the Commission. The first was an attempt to use his office as a Commissioner to unduly influence (and apparently successfully so) to have Caddo Sheriff Steve Prator have an investigator chase down the writer of a Facebook post that Linn did not like. Now Linn, and perhaps the Commission as well as the Sheriff, face a possible civil rights suit by a local attorney claiming that the email and subsequent actions of a Sheriff’s deputy violated her rights to free speech, unlawfully threatened her employment by a public agency and racially slandered her clientele.

Commissioner Matthew LinnLinn’s latest antic is to replace Parish Administrator Dr. Woody Wilson on the NLCOG (North Louisiana Council of Governments)—who is serving as chairman this year. Linn first sent a letter to Read more

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