Catching the vision
The Molalla visioning process keeps
moving along and city leaders want as
much of the public as possible to take
part, and also are looking for new voices
to talk about the future of Molalla.
The city conducted a survey and encouraged
citizens to participate via a
kickoff meeting, where officials invited
people connected with community
groups to help further spread the news
of the undertaking. Participants took a
survey to start the conversation to see
what is on people's minds when they
think about the future of Molalla.
One question that seems to stand
out is: "List three things that you
would like to see added to the Molalla
area to improve quality of life."
The four most commons answers
are: community events, walking, biking
and running trails, a revitalized
and beautiful downtown, and more
There were dozens of answers
and ideas tossed around this initial
City Councilor Elizabeth Klein
said a majority of the answers did
not come across as a surprise to
her, and that she is looking forward
to the fall, after she and fellow
councilor Leota Childress and
an undetermined member of the
city staff will participate in three
different Ford Family Foundation
"vision through action" workshops
before launching the second phase
of the Molalla visioning process.
"I really appreciate seeing certain
themes that came through
strongly, and that those themes
related to community, raising families,
tranquility of the area, and
safety, and we will see in phase
two if those are (themes) that keep
resurfacing that could be the beginning
of creating a value statement
for the community visioning
Klein said that based on the
findings of the survey, creating visioning
statements is the next priority
for the project.
"It gives the city and city council
enough information to figure
out where resources might be directed
and activities that can be
supported," she said.
Mayor Jimmy Thompson said
he hopes that Molalla citizens see
that the city council and other
community leaders are listening
and that people find that empowering
enough to become encouraged
to be even more engaged.
"The end result of the process
should be a unifying set of values
and a clear identity [for the city]
Thompson said. "Those will provide
us the foundation we need to
move into the future while ensuring
we become the community we
all want to be."
Other points the community included
in the survey were:
> Enjoying the small-town, community
environment — the people,
country and freedom.
> Parades and community
events, and the way everyone
comes together on July 4.
> The many home-grown residents
that take pride in the town
and its homegrown farm products.
> How easy it is to run into
someone you know.
> Molalla feels like a small,
friendly town, but at the same
time it's growing, which shows
that there is a draw to the community.
> People like the town, the community
that once was and that it's
trying to be again.
> The "awesome" fire department.
> Being able to ride a bike
As for business in Molalla, the
survey's central themes were:
> Molalla has friendly, helpful
> Staff members at some of the
larger chains know people by
> The opportunity that exists
for a cute, historic, small businessoriented
> Being able to have an office in
Molalla yet 99 percent of work
comes from outside the area.
When phase two of the study
starts this fall, Klein said she
hopes many more citizens will
"It's really important to hear
from as many people as we can in
order to include a variety of community
she said. "We hope to have a professional
facilitator lead that process
More to come on the Molalla visioning
process in the weeks and