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Public shares future vision

City officials have a pretty good idea about what the community would like to see in Beaverton's future.

'People are concerned about having a safe and livable community,' said Janice Deardorff, assistant to the mayor. 'They also want solutions for heavy traffic congestion, greater connectivity for pedestrians and bicyclists as well as affordable housing and jobs.

'They want the community to adapt to the changing population here, including senior housing for our aging population and an improved transit system. We also heard from many people that they want Beaverton to brand itself and make it a destination. We were told we need a cultural identity.'

Creation of a civic center, combining a new City Hall with a visual and performing arts center, would be one way to accomplish that goal, she added.

City staff are in the process of compiling all the input provided by community members during a series of town hall workshops and outreach meetings.

During the sessions, public participants were asked to share their thoughts about Beaverton's future sustainability, ways to tackle congestion and transportation issues, downtown redevelopment, economic development and neighborhood livability.

'We received a lot of really good input,' Deardorff said. 'We appreciate that citizens took their time to come and share their ideas with us.

'Even though the meetings had diverse audiences, the themes that emerged were the same.'

The city plans to share those community themes and report back to the public during a meeting at the end of the month or beginning of February.

The meeting will allow city staff and consultants to say, 'Here's what you said to us,' Deardorff said. The public will then have the opportunity to add anything that may be missing from the report.

The report from the visioning process will then go back to Mayor Rob Drake and the City Council.

'The City Council will then identify priorities and create both short- and long-term goals from what they learned in the visioning process,' Deardorff said.