First let me say that we are Jefferson City transplants - we've lived all over the country in our lives but when we had the opportunity to move back home to Missouri nearly 20 years ago, we chose to move to the Jefferson City area. In fact, we've invested in purchasing both a residence and opening a business in Jefferson City. The biggest draw for us was the sense of community that was here that we didn't find in our home town of St. Louis or in Kansas City area.
That sense of community is what has us excited about the Transformation project. We've heard lots about the difference that Transformation can make to attracting and keeping young folks but we're of that older generation. Those of us who have retired have lots to be excited about as well.
• Things to do like the prison museum, changes in the bottoms area, a farmer's market.
• Easier access to the downtown area with restroom facilities.
• Redevelopment of the Old Town area including the east end, downtown and Old Munichberg areas as well as parts of the west side.
• Possibilities for new businesses for those of us who want to continue to produce after we've retired from the corporate world.
• A real conference center that can attract more visitors who will support our restaurants and retail businesses.
• Expansion of Lincoln University for those of us who want to keep learning throughout our lives.
But the best thing about Transformation is that, even though the City Council will have to approve everything, it will be regular folks who will be administering the funds - prioritizing the projects, making sure that those projects stay on track rather than getting lost for years, and then helping celebrate and promote those achievements.
The St. Louis newspaper had an article a couple of weeks ago bragging on Jefferson City as a great place to visit. Transformation will keep that going. We should be proud of what this committee of 400 plus people put together and support what it will mean to all of us by passing the half- cent initiative.