Community Listens to Urban Designer's Plans on Downtown Panama City

PANAMA CITY, Fla. - Changes to downtown Panama City and the marina is stirring discussion once again. To kickstart planning, the community organization "Panama City Growing Strong" invited Victor Dover, an award winning town planner and urban designer with Dover-Kohl and Partners, to speak on the subject. 

"If you look at the historic buildings down on harrison- you see that the people who started this town were full of pride of place and I'm completely convinced that can be the norm again."

The event was held at the Bay County Government Center on Wednesday, 11 July.
A lot of his advice centered around ways to make the area feel social and not around driving everywhere.

Dover said, "Parts of the town are walkable and shady and other parts of the town have lost that character. And it'll be necessary to find ways to bring that back."
About the marina he said, "it's an enormous amount of real estate. Not just room for not just one project, but many things."

Dover also believed it would be helpful to have a citizen driven planning process.

Ed Lipkin, who attended the event felt removing some car space in downtown Panama City is a real possibility. "I think it is time for us to re-look at it. And I think I'm really pleased to see that both the community coming together and a lot of local officiials and people are interested. So thats I think going to make a lot of difference when it comes to making smart decisions and growing strong."

Ideas brought up during the event would take years to complete, and is suggested as a long term project. Currently the re-shaping of downtown Panama City is still being discussed and no official plans have been made.

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