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Comprehensive Plan

City of Amsterdam Official SealThe City of Amsterdam is at a crossroads as it begins the 21st Century. The City, like many former mill towns in Upstate New York and elsewhere, finds its economic base, neighborhoods and commercial areas in transition. The City's population has been in decline since the 1930's, new commercial and residential development has occurred mostly outside of the city limits in recent years. The City leadership has chosen to undertake a comprehensive planning process to respond to the on-going economic, social, and cultural changes that are shaping the community. It has been about 40 years since the City last completed a Citywide Master Plan.

The City of Amsterdam established the Comprehensive Plan Committee in the summer of 2001. The committee included a cross-section of residents who have been involved in local government and community activities, plus City staff. The committee met approximately monthly at City Hall. All of the committee meetings were open to the public, and a portion of the agenda at each was devoted to public comment.

In addition, a series of Neighborhood Meetings were held around the City in October 2001, and Focus Group Workshops were organized around Economic Development, Senior Issues, and Youth Issues later in the fall and early winter. A Community Survey was conducted in March 2002. The comprehensive planning process in Amsterdam has been exemplary in its efforts to involve a broad range of participants, and to incorporate their concerns. The ideas contained in this document reflect the community's input.

Overall, the City of Amsterdam seeks to strengthen its role as a livable city; a great place to live, work and visit in the Capital Region. To achieve this vision, the Comprehensive Plan recommends a series of actions organized around the following seven goals:

  • Improve Amsterdam's Image and Identity in the Region
  • Rebuild Amsterdam's Economic Foundation
  • Re-establish Downtown as the Community Center
  • Stabilize and Strengthen Neighborhoods
  • Re-develop Old Mill Sites and Improve Connections to Neighborhoods
  • Enhance Important Gateways to the Community
  • Create a City Greenway System

These goals are all expanded upon within the actual Comprehensive Plan for the City of Amsterdam.  To view the entire Plan, please contact the Amsterdam City Clerk's office.

Comprehensive Vision

There is no simple solution to the range of issues that the City of Amsterdam currently faces. For Amsterdam to succeed in implementing the new vision for its future outlined in the comprehensive plan, all parties must agree to work in a long-term, sustained effort toward this vision. Each person and organization brings its own interests and strengths to the table. But the comprehensive plan should, and does; channel the energy of the community's many actors and stakeholders toward a common set of goals. Building on the dedication of community leaders and volunteers, recent accomplishments along the waterfront and downtown, successful economic development initiatives, and existing strengths such as the city's wonderful neighborhoods, Amsterdam's future should be viewed with a great deal of optimism.

The City of Amsterdam established the Comprehensive Plan Committee to devise a plan of action for the city. This committee included a cross-section of residents who have been involved in local government and community activities, plus City staff. The committee met monthly at City Hall in meetings that were open to the public. A portion of the agenda at each of these meetings was devoted to public comment. In addition, a series of Neighborhood Meetings were held around the City and Focus Group Workshops were organized around Economic Development, Senior Issues, and Youth Issues. The comprehensive planning process in Amsterdam has been exemplary in its efforts to involve a broad range of participants, and to incorporate their concerns. The ideas contained in the Comprehensive Plan reflect the community's input.

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