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New committee will work to beautify Detroit lakes

A vibrant community. Aesthetic quality. Economic viability. All assets that a newly formed community strategies committee is looking to provide for Detroit Lakes.

Mayor Larry Buboltz formed the committee to "develop and recommend city planning initiatives originating from citizen input, the Gateway District Plan and the city's comprehensive plan."

The committee is made up of community members, council members and city staff.

Community members include Cyndi Anderson, Mary Beth Gilsdorf, Jeff Stowman, Pat Lindquist, Scott Mehlhaff, Deb Wimmer, Jeff Boehm and Joyce Campbell.

Council members are Bruce Imholte, Jim Anderson and Ron Zeman.

Staff includes Larry Remmen, community development director, Lou Guzek, city finance officer, and Rich Grabow, city administrator.

"From the very beginning, I've been someone who looks at the world as the big picture," said committee member Cyndi Anderson on why she looks forward to serving on the committee. "This (committee) is a good opportunity to make Detroit Lakes a better place to be. It's already good."

Besides aesthetics, the committee was also formed to research alternative funding opportunities and research other community examples for Detroit Lakes.

Some of the top priorities for the committee will be the Gateway District, Detroit Lakes Community and Cultural Center, West Lake Drive, downtown district and a bike path from Highway 34 to the hotel area.

"I'm most interested in the downtown area to West Lake Drive," Anderson said. "It's the gateway to our community. It's what people see and remember when they come here."

With the city evolving and continuously changing, Anderson said the committee is likely a permanent one.

"The beauty of vision -- it never stops," she said.

Since just being officially formed and approved last week, the group hasn't formally met yet. City council members have invited the community strategies committee to participate in the city's annual strategic planning meeting Feb. 8-9.

"Hats off (to the city) for being willing to take this step," Anderson said.

She added that she looks forward to working with the group, as each individual brings skills, strength, excitement and energy to the table.