Economic Development News

BIS Idea advances to Chamber Board
From dream to reality ...
Published: Sunday, July 20, 2014 8:00 am
By: Missy Bonnot, Director, Economic Development

What does it take to have an idea move from dream to reality?  Have you heard of Big Idea Sharing (BIS)?  Late last year the Chamber rolled out a mechanism in which the community would have a way to voice and submit community and economic development ideas for the Jefferson City area.  We created a place on our website entitled Have an idea? along with a submission form and information on how this initiative was started.   

To date we have received twenty-one ideas ranging from creating an open air pavilion that can be used for farmer’s market, craft or art shows or entertainment to creating additional parking by building a parking garage in the downtown area.  Every submitted idea is reviewed by the BIS Team.  Some ideas are referred to other entities, some ideas are still under review, and one particular idea has made it all the way to the Chamber Board of Directors after advancing through the BIS Team, the Vetting team, and the Economic Development Team.  I am not going to go into details of the process of how an idea is submitted and all the different teams the idea must go through in this article, but if you are interested, you
can find that on our website!

So what is this idea?  Submitted by Alan Mudd, the idea is to create a walking trail along the Missouri River on the north side of the river, close to the Carl Noren Access.  It would provide partly concrete but mostly a chat trail to walk and enjoy the river.  The walking trail would include covered picnic tables and lookout areas. 

The idea was presented to the Chamber Board by the BIS Team Co-Chairs, Gregg Bexten and Janet Weckenborg at the June Board meeting.  The cost for this project is approximately $240,000. Part of the process is to look for ways to fund this project and several funding avenues are currently being explored.

According to Mudd, “Connecting people to the river and providing an additional recreational activity for our community would enhance our quality of place.  This project could provide a catalyst to other future river projects.” 

A special thank you to the Vetting Team Members:

  • Alan Mudd, Facilitator
  • Bill Luebbert, Former City Councilman
  • Bill Lockwood, Parks and Recreation
  • Diane Gillespie, Convention & Visitors Bureau
  • Donnie Schnieders, Master Gardener
  • Janet Gallaher, Volunteer
  • Jeremy Winegar, Midwest Block and Brick 
  • Terry Lykowski , Volunteer     
  • Jim Penfold , former City Councilman and retired DNR employee         
  • Paul Beck, Parks and Recreation
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