I really think that few people participate in these kinds of forums because they believe their input is probably going to be ignored.

Whether that's true, well, I can't offer evidence one way or the other. But we figured we should at least put it out there to make you aware that your participation is welcome this week in planning the future of an area of Missoula that just recently went through a facelift.

The plan is called Envision West Broadway. The Missoula community is invited to participate in virtual public design input through this Friday, April 9. It seeks to gather big-picture input from the citizens of Missoula and establish a long-term vision for the future of the West Broadway Gateway area and how it should evolve in the coming years. The roughly 15-acre project site on the western edge of Missoula’s downtown is bounded by West Broadway Street, North Russell Street, North California Street and the Clark Fork River.

The mission is to build upon the ideas of the Missoula’s Downtown Master Plan, evaluating input received from people from a variety of backgrounds. While there has been some discussion of what the West Broadway Gateway area could become in the future, no solid vision for what the area could ultimately be was settled on. And we are talking about a 5-10 year plan.

As ownership patterns in the West Broadway Gateway area have evolved, there is now an opportunity to work closely with the community to develop a more specific vision for the area. To become more engaged, ask questions and sign up for plan updates, you can visit the Envision Missoula website here.

The guess here is that many of you who participate will say, "Build an Olive Garden." Sorry we can't make you any promises.


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