By Jason Bacaj MANAGING EDITOR
Bozeman Health has started drafting plans on how to develop “vibrant and sustainable neighborhoods” on undeveloped agricultural land it owns across Highland Boulevard from the Bozeman Health Deaconess Regional Medical Center, according to an announcement released Wednesday morning.
The drafting follows six months of public comment on the planning process, which was led by Sanderson Stewart, a local community design and planning company. A press release stated that the health system has no current plans to develop the land, but is updating plans for the area at the request of the city of Bozeman.
The plan framework aims to preserve Highland Glen as publicly accessible open space surrounded by “linear parks” that would function as a buffer area between the glen and residential and commercial mixed use zones.
Included in the framework is a network of non-motorized shared use paths throughout the residential and commercial mixed-use zones instead of paved streets.
Also included are three “community activity nodes.” The southern end of Highland Glen would feature a new trailhead replete with a paved parking lot, restrooms and a winter warming hut. West of that spot would be a “neighborhood commercial node.” The glen’s northern end would have a restored homestead that could serve as a community event space or public garden, documents show.
Public outreach over the last six months included five constituent meetings, three neighborhood meetings, four public open house events and more than 170 completed surveys, according to the release.
The draft is expected to be released for a 30-day comment period this spring before it is finalized and submitted to the city in the summer. After that, the plan will wind its way through the city government, with stops at the Community Development Board and the Bozeman City Commission.