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A Plan for a Vibrant New Year

One Acadiana and partners are excited to continue our work with revitalization expert Quint Studer, who is helping us take the strategy that got Pensacola, Florida on the road to vibrancy and customize it for Acadiana. Following recent visits to Lafayette, Quint said he could feel the energy and momentum building, with our commitment to next steps and an engaged group of citizens who want to elevate Lafayette and the Acadiana region from good to great.

Here is our game-plan for the year ahead:

We’ll hit civic education hard. The only change that will succeed long-term is citizen-powered change. It requires widespread, enthusiastic buy-in. Civic education gives us a common language for talking about revitalization. When people “get it,” they get behind it. This is the mission of our CivicCon Acadiana event series.

We’ll work to create a vibrant downtown. This is pivotal to creating the sense of place that attracts talent and investment, and it’s something we’ve advocated for since the founding of One Acadiana. With leadership from partners like the Downtown Development Authority and Lafayette Consolidated Government, we are excited about the progress that’s been made and the opportunities on the horizon to continue to advance a vibrant Downtown Lafayette.

We’ll get a laser focus on bright spots. It’s easy to be negative about things, but we have so much going well for us and so much to be proud of. A laser focus on the bright spots will help generate the positivity and momentum we need. Here are three game-changing bright spots to celebrate as we begin the new year:

  1. Moncus Park, a world-class park in central Lafayette, has opened to the public
  2. The new Lafayette Regional Airport terminal will open soon, a state-of-the art facility that will better serve our residents and proudly welcome our visitors
  3. The Municipal, a new development in the heart of Downtown Lafayette, will bring vibrancy to the long-vacant Old Federal Courthouse with 68 new residential units

And that’s just the tip of the iceberg!

We’ll focus on metrics and objective data. This past fall, we conducted a Quality-of-Life Survey for residents to give their perspective on Lafayette Parish. It covered factors like economic conditions, job security, educational opportunities, safety, and more. A highlight: 73% of respondents rated overall quality of life in Lafayette Parish as excellent or good!

Speaking of metrics and objective data, our immediate next step is to complete a regional data dashboard, which will provide an at-a-glance look at regional data on population, employment, education, and well-being. With the help of the Blanco Center at UL Lafayette, we will release this dashboard at our next CivicCon Acadiana event on March 3. Click here to learn more and to register!

We are looking forward to a vibrant 2022 and working together for a more vibrant Acadiana. Learn more at VibrantAcadiana.org.

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