So, what does the future of Osceola look like? Osceola’s Mayor and City Council, along with local business leaders and community members have been working to answer that question since the fall of 2022. Strategic sessions for Osceola’s Comprehensive Plan 2045, was officially kicked off in November of ‘22 with a meeting of local businesses and leadership to help define the strategy for the development of a truly comprehensive community plan. This plan was to not only offer a strategic path to Osceola’s future, but be driven by input from its citizens. With the initial Discovery stage coming to a close, the strategy now embarks on the next phase of its development – defining a vision for Osceola’s future.
With the help of RDG Planning & Design, a new online tool was launched and open to the public in mid-April. The planning tool allows users the ability to select areas within an interactive map to comment on or offer ideas about.
“…[T]he tool provides a real-time, community-directed discovery board for the future of Osceola,” said Cory Scott, Urban Planner from RDG Planning & Design.
For more than six weeks the interactive discovery page has been receiving ideas and starting conversations around everything from roads and infrastructure needs to suggestions on housing development, local parks and trail improvements and more – all to enhance the community, attract and grow businesses, and improve the overall quality of life throughout Osceola.
“We’ve had dozens of incredibly constructive comments and creative ideas,” said Osceola’s Mayor, Thomas Kedley. “We can’t wait to work through each idea in the next phase of planning.”
Based on the strategic outline, the next phase will be held in mid-July, shortly after Independence Day celebrations. In a public “Visioning Session,” Osceola leadership, businesses and engaged citizens will have the chance to come together and share the input collected throughout the Discovery stage. They will also be able to share additional input and learn more about the plan’s next steps.
The Visioning Session for the Osceola Comprehensive Plan will be held Thursday, July 20th at Revelton Distillery starting at 4:30PM and going until 6:00PM. The informal session is open to the public and people can attend for the entire session or stop by anytime for 15-minutes to contribute their ideas for the community’s future. All interested Osceola citizens are encouraged to attend.
“This is where we all come together for the collective benefit of our community,” said Kedley. “I want to see as many people as possible pack that room to help guide our vision and the plans for the future of Osceola.”
Once the Visioning Session is complete city planners and local leadership will prepare a prioritized list of action steps, based on the community input, ongoing discussions, budgets and more.
“Obviously, we’re looking to address the most urgent community needs first,” said Ty Wheeler, Osceola City Administrator. “Then, we can look at new and exciting paths for our city’s future development.”
The authoring of Osceola’s final comprehensive plan will take much of the rest of the Summer. A published comprehensive plan will be made available for public review in early Fall.