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July 2014

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Task force begins Main Street discussions in Sussex

SUSSEX — While still in the tentative stages, a task force is about to begin diving into an extensive project that will likely overhaul how Sussex residents access local civic organizations.

The Civic Campus Advisory Committee, an 11-person appointed body comprised of elected officials and residents, held its first meeting Tuesday, June 24. The group discussed its responsibilities and the overall vision behind the civic campus.

The advisory committee's analysis comes on the heels of a 2011 work group's recommendation that called for greater integration of community organizations into the revamped design and tie the work into the imminent reconstruction of Main Street.

Village Administrator Jeremy Smith outlined with the committee some of the overarching themes with the civic campus, which is to be placed on the same parcel as the existing municipal building, N64W23760 Main St.

"You have a voice, as the community, to really shape this project," Smith said. "Pieces of this will come and go and change as we move along."

The advisory committee will hold a series of meetings to hash over details for the new civic campus throughout the remainder of 2014. The next meeting has been scheduled for 6 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 14.

A timeline presented Tuesday calls for the group to provide recommendations to the Village Board by Dec. 2. The Village Board is to discuss and possibly act on the committee's recommendation Dec. 9.

The advisory committee is designed to represent a cross-section of different residents, including business owners and organization heads.

"Your ideas and suggestions are very important to us," Village President Greg Goetz said. "This isn't just a symbolic committee that doesn't mean anything."

In addition to the village hall — which will likely replace the existing facility — the civic campus could include the Pauline Haass Public Library and a disparate number of organizations, some with offices and meeting space elsewhere in the community.

A sampling of civic organizations involved with the tentative stages include the local park and recreation department, historical society, Lions Club, senior center, chamber of commerce and food pantry. One organization, Masonic Lodge Ashlar No. 193, has declined to be involved in the project.

The YMCA of Central Waukesha County also is part of the preliminary discussions. If plans move forward, the organization could have a Sussex branch on the same grounds as the municipal building and library.

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