The Eagle Project started life last spring as an advisory group; a few business people who came together with the mission to work together to help the City. There was one rule: no personal agendas. The group grew and attracted citizens from such diverse backgrounds as medicine, education, Idaho utilities, municipal government, developers, planners, bankers, wine growers, equestrian professionals and commercial builders.
To begin, we believed we needed to take a serious look in the mirror. What are our strengths and challenges? What defines Eagle? What vision can we all share for Eagle’s future? How do we follow that vision to reality?
The group concluded that Eagle is a city blessed with beautiful open-spaced foothills with a spectacular river running through it. We are a family-oriented city and friendly to all who enjoy our stunning natural beauty, our strong sense of community and our sophisticated country ambiance. We are a safe community, yet with easy access to all the sports and entertainment of a major city. We are the gateway to nearly every major outdoor sport imaginable; .
There is a western “old time” feel to the place, equally in vogue with the affluent equestrian set as well with the National Cutting Horse Association members who ranch nearby. Many of the citizens are highly educated, naturally independent, and work from their homes. It is an affordable area with large-lot developments where we enjoy a high standard of living. It is truly a healthy environment where one can live, work and play.
We took an asset inventory of natural and human resources, business attraction strengths, community and infrastructure, art and culture, and education. We looked at the barriers to economic development, both for business and funding, but also human perceptual barriers. We asked: where do we want to be in 5 and 10 years?
We determined we would very selectively like to attract small to medium size enterprises in agriculture, viticulture, technology, tourism, healthcare and education. We would like to be a college town that could incubate innovative software firms. We want to maintain our walking and bike trails, our river access, our safe crime-free neighborhood feel.
The process is under the able guidance of Dr. Kendra Kenyon and the Idaho Council of Governments team (formerly Sage). We are now working in sub-groups grappling with such issues as how can we grow our viticulture presence as Walla Walla has done; what kinds of medical or bio-medical companies might we wish to make Eagle their home, how we can help existing Eagle businesses reach their potential.
We meet regularly, subject to the schedules of the participants. We would love to your involvement and participation. If you wish to have a hand in Eagle’s growth and development, come join us at the next Eagle Project meeting. Call Tracy Osborn at the City – 939-6813 for meeting times and location.