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City Puts Out a Call for Public Comments on Its Proposed Land-Use Plan

Luis Alberto Villarreal

Mapa del Plan

By Jesús Aguado

The city has finished its environmental and territorial planning document—the Programa Municipal de Desarrollo Urbano y Ordenamiento Ecológico y Territorial (PMDUOET)—and now it’s calling upon citizens to weigh in.

Citizens can respond to the document, a copy of which can be downloaded at implansma.gob.mx, until September 11. A printout is also available at Plaza Principal 4.

The PMDUOET is a municipal instrument for a Mexican city’s sustainable development. It designates what areas in town are to be under environmental protection and creates a planning document that balances the need for development, the need to protect the environment, and the needs of the citizens living in the city.

The plan is updated every few years.

The PMDUOET divides the city into Unidades de Gestion Ambientes (Entities of Environmental Management), known as UGAs. UGAs can help people understand the history of each area in town as well as the economic or environmental use that it can have. When the document is finalized, residents can urge authorities to respect the intended land-use designation of an area.

The last PMDUOET was approved by the San Miguel de Allende City Council in 2012. In 2017, the administration worked on a new version, but it was never completed. This year, to meet the state requirements from the Planning and Territorial Institute, the administration worked on a new version, which is what was finally presented before the city council.

The document was approved in a city council meeting. Before that, the Instituto Municipal de Planeación worked on it, along with citizens and officials from San Miguel municipal departments.

With its publication, nonprofit organizations, citizens, and members from the private sector are allowed to submit ideas, proposals, and opinions regarding it. Submissions of comments will be received at the IMPLAN office at Plaza Principal 4 and at the Secretariat of Government office in the yellow building on the road to Querétaro. After that, the document will be sent by the local government to the state authorities to rule on its legality and possibly give recommendations for revision. If it is approved, the state publishes it in its official journal, a last step which legalizes the text.

“Currently 79 UGA are proposed, 30 percent more than in the last program, and that means that 30 percent more of the territory will be environmentally protected “in order to have an ordered and sustainable city,” Villarreal said

In the document open to review, San Miguel’s defunct airfield at San Julián is listed as a UGA. Several local organizations are against its being developed. It is currently being proposed for use again as a small-plane landing strip. However, Villarreal remarked that the space already has a designated use, and those who have political or economic interests have to register a complaint with the federal government, which is in charge of issuing the permits for the airfield to open or not.

“This is not the window,” he said.

 

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