BEND, OR -- With so many people projected to move to Bend in the coming years, organizations, like Bend's 20/30, are helping to plan how to accommodate a steadily growing population.
Erin Foote Morgan, with the Move Bend Coalition, says there are standards in place for housing, but when it comes to infrastructure, she believes the public should be involved in the planning. "So, we have a moment, right now, in the future of Bend, to really shape our transportation systems in a way that we may not ever have again, and the reason for that is that every agency that works on transportation is updating a major plan and the goal of Move Bend is to engage as many different sectors of the Bend community as possible in all of these major planning processes."
Every transportation agency in Bend will be updating their plans in the next eighteen months and the Move Bend Coalition thinks area residents should have a say in how those plans are changing. Foote Morgan says, "We know from the UGB process how we're going to deal with housing for all of those new people, but now we need a transportation system that can support the plans we just made. And so, the Move Bend Coalition wants to make sure that all get to weigh in from their kind of viewpoint what's needed."
Foote Morgan recommends that everyone goes to MoveBend.org to learn more about upcoming public meetings where transportation agencies will be taking input on topics like sidewalks, bike transit, pedestrian crossings, highway projects, and new roads.
Foote Morgan says there are hundreds of millions of dollars in road and bike transit funds now available and she hopes the public will weigh in with their ideas. "We're inviting the public to join us for listening sessions which will begin in late October and run through December and the goal is for every sector of the community to have the chance to get on the table their values and priorities. That's the value of this project."