By Steve Barg
Marshfield City Administrator
The holiday season is a good time to reflect on the past year, whether it was a quiet one or it was filled with change and transition. It also offers a great chance to look ahead to the new year and the possibilities for growth and improvement.
I do not mean the usual New Year’s resolutions like explore a new career, start a diet/exercise program, make/stick to a budget, etc. These are fine goals, but I am talking about seeking a new vision and direction. I believe 2015 holds this type of promise for the city of Marshfield.
Starting early in the year, the council will do some strategic planning to help get consensus on a general direction, looking at areas like economic/community development, public safety, financial management, and recreation/quality of life.
It will be an excellent opportunity for the Mayor and each council member to share his or her vision for Marshfield and find common ground as the council and staff work together to plan the city’s future with plenty of chances for input and feedback from our citizens.
In 2015 city officials also look forward to a few exciting projects that have been planned for some time.
Next week Mayor Meyer will update you on the much anticipated Library & Community Center, where construction is expected next fall. For now I want to briefly touch on two other improvements planned for 2015.
The first is a $1.1-million grizzly bear exhibit at Wildwood Zoo, where construction should start in spring of 2015 with completion expected in the fall. This will offer a home for two grizzly bears, expand the existing exhibit with over 4,000 square feet of new groomed space, and create a more natural environment with opportunities for future enrichment. It will be a nice addition to our already outstanding zoo.
Starting in late spring and running through the fall, Maple Avenue will be reconstructed from Veteran’s Parkway to Sixth Street. Like Chestnut Avenue in 2013, this project will be financed using Tax Increment Financing (TIF), which allows the City to pay for needed public improvements using additional tax dollars generated within our downtown TIF district.
Although similar to Chestnut Avenue in many respects, the Maple Avenue project may have a slightly different look as this reconstruction will reflect the somewhat more residential and less commercial character along this stretch of roadway.
On behalf of the Mayor, city council, and city staff, I wish you a terrific holiday season and an enjoyable and prosperous new year. Please call me at 715-387-6597 or e-mail me at Steve.Barg@ci.marshfield.wi.us if you have questions, comments, or suggestions on how we can serve you better.
Also let me know if you want to serve on one of our advisory committees. We generally have openings when the Mayor makes appointments in April, and we would like to have you join us as a part of your city government. Let us work together to make Marshfield an even more vibrant and wonderful place to live, work, and play in 2015.