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Meridian plans ahead, community members given a chance to be heard

City leaders say now is the time for community members to make their voice heard about what the city will look like for decades to come.

Meridian's booming growth is pushing city leaders to reevaluate their ten year plan.

Tuesday's meeting at the city hall is a sign of Meridian's growth.

These comprehensive city plans are generally created every ten years, but this one they're starting four years early, because Mayor Tammy de Weerd says addressing the Meridian's growth can't wait.

"It is critical. It's a turning point for us, at a 100-thousand population, for our citizens to engage in what they want their community to be down the road," says Community Development Director for the City of Meridian Cameron Arial.

From transportation and schools to what Meridian's future buildings will look like, city leaders say now is the time for community members to make their voice heard about what the city will look like for decades to come.

When Meridian's last plan was made in 2012, the city was one-third the size it is today. This new planning process is an opportunity for newcomers to have a say in what's next and for long-time residents to speak up about what they do and don't want.

"What people love is family values. They love their green space and open space. They love their heritage and downtown," said Bruce Meighen with Logan Simpson consulting, the company hired to help orchestrate the new plan.

Those running today's session say it's clear what makes Meridian a popular place to live. Which is part of why so many people are moving here.

However, many long time community members in Tuesday's meeting seemed to be afraid of losing those qualities with the growth.

"The biggest challenge Meridian will ever face is the collaboration. Everyone's going to have their own ideas. But it will be the biggest forward progress and positivity if and when it happens," said Mark Taylor a designer and Meridian resident.

Tonight's meeting is just the first of many to come and the planning process is in the very early stages.

Find out more information here about upcoming events.

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