Young vision helps with RiverVision

2013-10-31T04:00:00Z 2013-10-31T05:09:32Z Young vision helps with RiverVisionKurt Allemeier kallemeier@qctimes.com The Quad-City Times

Davenport's RiverVision will get a younger perspective.

Among the six community members involved in selecting a consultant to update the 10-year-old RiverVision plan are three Davenport high school students.

"The more we involve the future of this community in decision-making, the strong this community is," said City Administrator Craig Malin, who reached out to Davenport Community School District Superintendent Art Tate to recommend the students.

Austin Claussen of North High School, Luke Eure of Central High School and Drew Harrison of West High School join Quad-Cities Chamber of Commerce chief operating officer Betsy Brandsgard, Levee Improvement Commission member Trish Townsend and RiverAction executive director Kathy Wine on a committee to evaluate proposals.

Harrison, 16, a junior, wants to be an engineer and is interested in state government. Jason Frazenberg, West's Project Lead the Way teacher, recommended Harrison who has been studying architecture and civil engineering.

"It is a good opportunity for me to see all the firms' plans and see how it turns out," Harrison said of his invitation. "It is nice to have the input of a high schooler."

RiverVision was a combined effort of Davenport and Rock Island and other community partners to create a unified plan to tie together the two cities' riverfronts.

Townsend thinks it is a good idea to bring young voices into the conversation about the riverfront's future.

"The intent there is to talk to the generation that is going to be here 20, 30 years from now," she said. "Let's talk to some seniors in high school who might have a different perspective than someone in their 50s or 60s."

Alderman Bill Boom, 3rd Ward, supports the students' inclusion but isn't so sure what they will add. He also is glad that Wine is part of the decision-making.

"I'm not sure the number of students we'll poll can weigh the decision," he said. "There is good representation from the community, and it is good that you get people who will weigh in on something that impacts our community in years to come."

Davenport officials and community members recognized the need for an update after several projects in the plan were completed along with the expected departure of the Rhythm City Casino off the riverfront. The Dock restaurant/office project also lent urgency to the update.

The city received four proposals for updating the RiverVision plan, including Hargreaves Associates of Cambridge, Mass., which drafted the original RiverVision plan.

The other proposals are from Confluence of Des Moines, RDG Planning and Design of Des Moines and Vierbicher of Madison, Wis.

Committee members will receive copies of the proposals, and public interviews will be set up in mid-November, Malin said. A consultant is expected to be selected shortly after the interviews.

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(1) Comments

  1. Choose_Davenport
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    Choose_Davenport - October 31, 2013 10:31 am
    Why no female students?
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