RAYNE MEETING HELD - Alex Holland, with McClure Engineering, speaks to the rayne committee during her return trip to Acadia Parish as progress is made for the Acadia Parish Creative Placemaking Initiative. Holland will return to Acadia Parish soon with the action plan for Rayne and other communities throughout the parish. (Acadian-Tribune Photo by Lisa Soileaux)
Acadia Parish Placemaking meetings held, Rayne plans discussed
RAYNE - As did each of the five communities in Acadia Parish, members of the Rayne committee met on Wednesday, Oct. 24, for the next step in the Acadia Parish Creative Placemaking Initiative.
Joining Rayne for the Acadia Parish plans are Crowley, Iota, Church Point and the 5th Ward in the southwest portion of the parish.
Alex Holland, along with project manager Laurie Suire, visited all five locations and in turn, visited with property owners, business personnel and donors for their input of the anticipated projects planned by each community.
“We’re not just planning to build or establish a building,” stated Holland. “We, me and you all, are planning and building your local economy and giving each community what it needs, whatever that may be.”
Noted during the steering committee meeting held at The Green Room was the emphasis of the “support of work force development and creation of additional jobs, in addition to providing programs for all age groups.”
“I can see that everyone here really cares about this community,” continued Holland during the Rayne meeting. “That’s the first part because you live here and care about what direction this community is going.”
Suire noted that each community has narrowed the focus of projects and are in the process of meeting with property owners and other potential partners to implement those projects.
The initiative kicked off at the end of July when each community had the opportunity to participate in “visioning sessions,” explaining what is unique about each area, what is needed and what would be nice to have.
Over the weeks since, each community’s subcommittee has met multiple times to discuss the community feedback results and to provide direction and information requested by the consultants from McClure Engineering.
There also was a survey link provided for anyone who could not make the sessions to participate.
Holland will return with a action plan for each community, at which time, adjustments and tweaks will be made to better suit each goal.
Each action plan will be implemented and Holland anticipates a two-year development stage for a capital campaign and fundraisers to begin.
Meanwhile, a Facebook page has been created for the Acadia Parish community to follow the initiative and to engage. Citizens are encouraged to like and follow “Acadia Parish Placemaking.”
A more complete schedule of Holland’s activities during her next visit will be announced as times and dates are finalized.