Saturday, July 2, 2022

City of Southlake’s Health and Wellness Plan-The Process and Benefits

The City of Southlake’s Planning and Development Services Department provided City Council an update on the development of the Health and Wellness Master Plan at their May 7 meeting.

The Health and Wellness Master Plan, which is an element of the 2035 Comprehensive Plan, is designed to address key components of wellness in the community. It consolidates, organizes and in some cases, updates existing city policies, programs and recommendations specifically related to health and wellness. It also includes 36 recommendations in four topic areas: Built and Natural Environment, Mental and Physical Health, Age-Friendly Communities and Community Resiliency.

“Currently, the City offers and supports many programs related to serving the community in terms of health and wellness,” said Director of Planning and Development Services Ken Baker. “The Health & Wellness Master Plan will help establish clear goals and priorities for the next several years related to encouraging overall community wellness.”

In order to develop the plan, a Health and Wellness Committee was formed to provide feedback and act as an advisory board to City Council. So far, the Health and Wellness Committee has conducted six meetings to formulate the plan. During these meetings, the committee and City staff developed recommendations for the plan.

Also, as part of plan development, the committee received input from the Southlake Kids Interested in Leadership (SKIL), the Southlake Youth Action Commission (SYAC), the Southlake Senior Advisory Committee and CISD School Health Advisory Committee.

“The City recognizes that our resident population is diverse, and this plan aims to be representative of all groups (including youth, middle-aged and senior citizens) regarding health and wellness topics,” said Baker.

The adoption process consists of multiple public meetings: SPIN, Planning and Zoning Commission and two readings at City Council. These public meetings provide an opportunity for the community to give feedback on the plan. The process also allows boards, committees and City Council the opportunity to guide and direct policy for Southlake.

Below are the next steps for the Health & Wellness Master Plan, all located at Southlake Town Hall:

  • H&W Open House – May 14, 2019 (5–6 p.m.)
  • SPIN Town Hall Forum – May 14, 2019 (6 p.m.)
  • P&Z Commission meeting – May 23, 2019 (6:30 p.m.)
  • City Council 1st Reading – June 4, 2019 (5:30 p.m.)
  • City Council 2nd Reading & Public Hearing – June 18, 2019 (7 p.m.)

A draft version of the Health and Wellness Master Plan is available on the City’s website.

Interested in Health, Wellness and Your Community? Join the new Health and Wellness Committee.

Would you like to help shape the future in Southlake? Are you someone who is interested in health or wellness? Is your community important to you?

If you answered yes to these questions, apply now to the new Health & Wellness Master Plan Committee.

Need to know more?  Southlake is full of health and wellness experts, enthusiasts and advocates who we’d like to help us put together the new Health and Wellness Master Plan. Here are a few examples of ideas the committee could explore.

Built & Natural Environment – How can parks be more senior-friendly? This topic may include looking at how landscape and lighting requirements can increase public safety, and developing criteria to evaluate the overall safety of development proposals;

Transportation – This could include highlighting existing Community Service Agreements, such as Call a Ride Southlake (CARS). The committee may also explore sidewalk connections and how incorporating Intelligent Traffic Systems (ITS) into roadways might encourage safety and increase mobility;

Aging Population – Another important focus area includes examining opportunities to increase the quality of life for seniors in the community and those that wish to “age in place” through policies and programs. This may consist of reviewing ordinances in terms of existing requirements for family or “mother-in-law” quarters as families may serve as caregivers for aging relatives;

Mental Health & Wellness – Topics within this category may include working with healthcare professionals on community needs related to anxiety and depression and other mental illnesses;

Partnerships – This ultimately speaks to how the City of Southlake will pursue partnerships with groups such as health care providers, the Carroll Independent School District, and possibly other community service organizations that focus on health and wellness initiatives.

Southlake City Council recognizes the importance of health and wellness issues and has included this new component in the Southlake 2035 Comprehensive Plan. While this plan element is new, it will build on recommendations from other plans. For example, the LiveFit Program has been successfully implemented as a health and wellness program in the City. “The success of LiveFit demonstrates that health and wellness is something we can all relate to. I’m looking forward to the invaluable insight committee members will provide us as we move forward with this new component of the 2035 Master Plan,” says Senior Director of Planning & Development Services Ken Baker.

City Council is seeking applicants of all ages and backgrounds, encouraging those with professional experience or interest in health or wellness topics to apply. Committee members will be asked to meet about once a month over the course of several months, to work alongside City staff to develop this master plan element. They will be reviewing existing city policies; evaluating the current health and wellness landscape in Southlake; analyzing current and future wellness needs and topics; and formulating recommendations to City Council related to health and wellness.

Interested in applying? Visit the Health and Wellness Plan page on the City website to learn more about the application process. Applications are due by February 16, 2018.