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Your Tewksbury Today

Tewksbury Residents Are Shaping the Town’s Future Online

Mar 25, 2017 01:44PM ● By Bill Gilman
(Editor's note: The following information was submitted by Jonathan Lee, Community Engagement Manager,  coUrbanize)

When Tewksbury leaders launched an online mapping site for comments about the town’s future this month, they had no idea just how popular it would be.

Within the first week, residents posted 100 comments on the map at http://courb.co/tewksbury, and that number has more than doubled since.

The Tewksbury Community Vision Project is an effort by the Board of Selectmen to develop a collaborative vision for the town’s next 15-20 years in all things planning and government. The Board created the 7-member Tewksbury Vision Committee in 2016 to oversee the project, and matched them with a consultant to help engage the community.

The crazy part: The Vision Committee hasn’t even had an in-person event yet. The Vision Project Open House is Monday, March 27 at 6pm in the high school auditorium.

What do people want to see in Tewksbury’s future? Here are the top suggestions so far:
  • More sidewalks, bike lanes, and bike racks
  • More local coffee shops and casual restaurants
  • A better developed town center
  • A dog park, signs for hiking trails, and more park expansion/maintenance
  • More activities for children and the elderly, like a maker space
  • Ways to keep Tewksbury affordable.
The online map and project site at http://courb.co/tewksbury is hosted by coUrbanize, a Boston-based community engagement platform for municipal planning and real estate development projects. Founder Karin Brandt says she’s thrilled with the response in Tewksbury.

“This is why we designed coUrbanize, to connect with busy people using technology and make community planning more inclusive.”

Brandt says the coUrbanize platform allows project teams like the Vision Committee to respond to comments and post blog-style updates. Participants receive email notifications when they get a reply. The Vision Committee has already responded to dozens of Tewksbury residents.

You can follow and comment on the Tewksbury Community Vision Project at http://courb.co/tewksbury

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