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Smith promoted to permanent position as Ogdensburg planner

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John M. Pinkerton didn’t have to look far when hiring a permanent city planner.

Mr. Pinkerton, city manager, promoted Andrea L. Smith, interim director of planning and development, to the permanent position, effective Jan. 1.

“It is a position that needs to be filled, and we had someone who is bright, energetic and already knows the job,” he said. “She is by far the best candidate available for the job.”

Along with the permanent position, the City Council will take up a resolution to give Ms. Smith a raise.

“Based on how well she’s done, there’s no doubt in my mind that Andrea is a winner and the city won by keeping her permanently,” Mr. Pinkerton said.

Last year, the council voted to raise her salary to $44,250 from a $36,250 base. Any additional pay will come from the city’s Community Development fund, which recently received a windfall from the auction of public property.

Ms. Smith has served as interim city planner for the past 14 months, overseeing progress in three waterfront initiatives: the Brownfield Opportunity Area, the Local Waterfront Revitalization Plan and the areawide planning program.

“We’ve entered a new stage working on the waterfront,” she said. “We’re working concentrated on the BOA and wrapping up the EPA areawide planning grant.”

Ms. Smith, along with consultants, also is updating the city’s Local Waterfront Revitalization Plan and has worked with the Planning Board over the past year on revising the city’s zoning ordinance.

Her next project is retooling some of Ogdensburg’s streets and intersections to make them pedestrian- and bike-friendly.

“There is a grant proposal we’re working on for the St. Lawrence County Health Initiative’s Complete Streets program,” she said. “This is something the city and the community have been interested in, addressing sidewalks and bike lanes through our development of gateways and corridors.”

If the city receives the grant, Ms. Smith suggested the city would focus on improving streets in the Marina District.

“With the new bridge and the improvements that were made, we’re really hoping the marina district area will become an area to do some implementation,” she said.

In October 2011, J. Justin Woods resigned to become executive director of the Ticonderoga Revitalization Alliance. At the time, Ms. Smith was working as a program manager for the city’s Brownfields Opportunity Area program, but then City Manager Arthur J. Sciorra appointed her for the interim.

Ms. Smith is a native of Ogdensburg and a graduate of Ogdensburg Free Academy. She holds dual master’s degrees in urban and regional planning and landscape architecture, as well as a bachelor’s degree in landscape architecture from Virginia Tech. She also acts as executive director of the Ogdensburg Growth Fund and Development Corp.

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