A Planner’s Approach to City Redistricting
by Geoff Kelly - posted 11:25 am, May 19, 2011
Yesterday, shortly after the commission advising Buffalo’s Common Council on redistricting submitted its recommendations to the City Clerk, one of the members of that commission, Russell Weaver, and a community activist, Terrence Robinson, submitted an alternate plan that takes a novel approach to designing legislative districts.
Rather than being guided by traditional political boundaries and considerations, Weaver and Robinson’s plan uses planning districts, as already recognized and used by the city’s Office of Strategic Planning, as the building blocks for districts. Doing so, they argue, removes incumbent political interests from the redistricting process and imbues the city’s governmental organization with a logic that will facilitate planning and projects, both locally and citywide.
Anyway, here’s the entire proposal. Russell and Weaver have stuck with the current, nine-district configuration, but the districts are somewhat different than the proposal put forth by the advisory commission, which looks like this.
There is a a public hearing on redistricting in Common Council chambers, on the 13th floor of City Hall, this evening, at 5:30pm.