Iowa's Living Roadways Community Visioning Accepting Applications for 2024 Program Year


July 14, 2023, 11:08 am | Sandra Oberbroeckling

bike and walking trail.AMES, Iowa -- The Iowa’s Living Roadways Community Visioning Program is currently accepting applications for the 2024 program. Eligible communities are those with populations of fewer than 10,000 residents, existing transportation-related issues, and a committee of volunteers willing to dedicate their time and talent to the visioning process. Only communities located within one mile of a state or federal highway will be selected.

The visioning program integrates technical landscape planning and design techniques with sustainable community action to empower local leaders through a planning process that results in an enhancement plan that reflects the values and identity of the community.

Public participation is the key to identifying the needs and desires of a community. Community Visioning Program staff engage client community residents using a variety of methods to ensure a more inclusive public process. In larger communities, surveys are sent to a random sample of households to better understand how residents use the local transportation system. Program staff conduct focus groups with a variety of user types, including parents, youth, older adults, people with mobility issues and active recreationists, to identify factors that affect transportation use in communities.

Community installations give residents flexibility to view design proposals and provide feedback when it is convenient for them and bring attention to potential project sites. All communities have their own webpage on the Community Visioning website, where residents can access meeting information, design proposals and eventually final products. The program engages the public on a variety of social media platforms, including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube.

Communities selected to participate are required to contribute $2,000 (either cash or in-kind) toward program implementation. In return, the visioning program provides professional services valued at more than $80,000. Since 1996, 258 Iowa communities throughout the state have participated, ranging in size from towns of fewer than 100 residents to cities with close to 9,000 people. Of these communities, approximately three dozen have gone through the process more than once.

community visioning application QR code.The program is sponsored by the Iowa Department of Transportation in partnership with Iowa State University Landscape Architecture Extension and Trees Forever, an Iowa-based nonprofit with a mission to plant and care for trees and the environment by empowering people, building community and promoting stewardship.

Communities interested in applying to the 2024 Community Visioning Program can apply online at https://www.communityvisioning.org/apply/.

Applications must be submitted by Sept. 1, 2023. Selections will be announced at the end of September.

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