1000 Friends Presents: We Are the Ones We’re Waiting for

By · June 19, 2014 · Filed in 1000 Friends, Uncategorized

Nearly five years ago our community took the first step to develop an ambitious planning process to redevelop Waco’s heart with housing, shops, work places, attractions, visitor amenities, schools, civic facilities, parks and greenbelts, grand boulevards and neighborhood streets. This process kicked off with unprecedented public participation in the summer of 2009.

City and civic leaders invited the community to help envision a safe, healthy, sustainable downtown from Quinn Campus to 18th Street and from Baylor University to Cameron Park.

We were guided through the process by a nationally recognized team of consultants, but the plan was created by you and other interested and affected citizens who provided their vision to shape our future.

To mobilize volunteers to participate in the planning process, the Greater Waco Chamber established an all-volunteer entity called 1000 Friends of Waco. This became public policy advocacy in action at the grass roots level.

We have made spectacular progress in the last five years, thanks to the extraordinary efforts of everyone involved. The work to date has brought clarity to many issues. Many believe we are at a moment when vast change is inevitable─if not already underway.

Much of what we do in the community we do because it’s what we’ve always done. Observers believe that we are at a tipping point that could change our path in a direction we have never gone before. This creates a tremendous opportunity to live in a better place. Research and communication can help us to better understand the dynamics at work in the world and develop strategies to make progress through a focused, educated and sophisticated effort.

This effort, with your help and input, has helped redefine the notion of success for our community. But even though future growth patterns are becoming clear and momentum exists does not mean it’s time to celebrate a job well done. Now is the time to avoid complacency, step on the gas and take advantage of the momentum.


When 1000 Friends of Waco was created, we collectively said “Waco deserves to be a better place.” We still believe that, and the results of your work speak for itself. We are more than 1000 Friends who have a vision for a transformational future; and more than 1000 Friends who were willing to think and act big enough and bold enough to build a better, greater downtown. We are the ones we are waiting for!

Thank you for all you do to make Waco a better place.

The primary goal of 1000 Friends of Waco is to prepare residents to be advocates for a vibrant, successful Greater Downtown Waco.  Join us in being a part of the “new normal” for more discussion daily at 1000friendsofwaco.com or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

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