In 2016, several people came together to create a vision for the future of Plymouth that they would like to see become a reality with the help of the Nebraska Main Street Network.
Elizabeth Chase, executive director of the Nebraska Main Street Network, explained that this is an important process that can help communities to grow.
“We’re going through the envisioning process,” said Chase. “It’s something we do with communities to help identify things that are happening in the community, and things that need to happen to help the communities grow. This helps them to get to know their community a little bit better and gives them time to look at the opportunities the communities have to grow.”
She explained that it was beneficial to gather a diverse group of people together to brainstorm ideas to help improve the community as well as to plan ways to get around hurdles that may hinder economic development in Plymouth.
Some of the things that the people at the meeting believed were strengths in Plymouth were the number of businesses, the cleanliness of the community as well as the number of events that are hosted in Plymouth every year.
The people in attendance were in agreement that there were areas for improvement, including increasing housing options, adding a variety of restaurants and encouraging local businesses to stay in Plymouth. They agreed that they want to work with the community to become the best small town in Southeast Nebraska.
Chase emphasized that this is an achievable goal as long as the people of Plymouth continue to work together to improve their community. She explained that her organization has worked with many small towns in Nebraska to help them to make their dreams a reality.
“We help communities get organized and help them to come up with projects and activities that will meet their goals and the vision that they have developed for the community,” Chase said. “Plymouth is one of the communities that we work with, so what we do is we take the feedback from this meeting and develop a vision statement for the future of the community to help create more projects and activities for them to help reach that goal.”
Chase explained that although there will be work ahead of the community, the meeting to discuss the vision for a future Plymouth was a major step forward in the process.
“Every community needs to have a vision before they can move forward,” said Chase. “Having a vision helps the community long term because it provides a long-term solution to help reach their goals.”