Why 1000 Friends of Waco?

By · February 27, 2012 · Filed in Uncategorized

The primary goal of 1000 Friends of Waco is to arm you with everything you need to be advocates for a vibrant, successful greater downtown.

Who do we advocate to? we envision a community united behind a common effort to make greater downtown a cool place where people want to spend time living working and playing.

What do we advocate for? We stand for the implementation of a community based vision developed through the Imagine Waco planning process. We believe that urban development is a key to our future success as a city, as an economic development organization and as citizens.

Why do we advocate for urban development? Here are ten ways Urban Development impacts all of us:

  • Money: The farther away we live from our jobs the higher our transportation costs, or the less money we have to save or spend on other things.
  • Urban development increases the quality and efficiency of public services. Services such as police and fire, schools, and utilities are more expensive and less efficient because they have to cover more ground without urban development.
  • This, in turn raises our taxes, without urban development not only are our public services lacking, they also cost more.
  • Physical fitness: Suburban development patterns are entirely auto-oriented, resulting in more time driving and less time walking.  Urban development patterns are more human scale and encourage walking and interaction.
  • Health: A growing body of evidence links increasing rates of diabetes, cancer, obesity, asthma, depression and several other health problems to community design.
  • Downtown tastes better: locally owned restaurants tend to thrive more in urban areas while fast food drive-thrus tend to permeate less urban more auto-centric places.
  • Increases public safety: More eyes on the street is a great crime deterrent.
  • Saves green space: IfWaco adds its projected population growth over the next 40 years at current density levels we will lose 65-80 square miles of green space in McLennan Co.
  • Water Quality: Reducing our urban footprint will minimize impervious cover, less severely impacting water quality in our rivers and lake due to storm water runoff.
  • Quality of living: large parking lots take up space that could be used for parks, more vehicle miles traveled directly translates to lower air quality, large roads create noise pollution.

And one to grow on:

  • More high fives: It’s physically impossible to be unhappy while either giving or receiving a high five, spending time in an urban environment affords you more opportunity to interact and encounter other people.

Our community has a story and we want you to be prepared to offer context, common values and connecting points that relate our story to our goals and we believe that the information shared among 1000 Friends of Waco helps provide that context.

1000 Friends of Waco is not only a means for us to get information out it’s also perhaps more importantly a place to listen and learn, feedback is critical to our ability to refine our programming, our processes and ultimately our means to success.  Community building can’t exist in a vacuum; input and ideas are critical. Greater Downtown Waco will not be successful without you.

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