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Redmond looks at future of economy, tourism, livability

More trail connections one area being examined

REDMOND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- The city of Redmond is working to stay ahead of the curve and keep up with the changes and the growth that it's seeing, and is looking to the future not only for its economy but for its livability as well.

Deputy City Manager John Roberts said the city is looking at moving forward with a economics opportunity analysis to look at where it can best facilitate new jobs.

Roberts said its important the city continues to evolve and foster job growth.

"Employment growth and trade sector jobs are the underpinnings to our community ... and we need those good jobs to maintain a strong community," he said.

Roberts said the study will be a part of the city's comprehensive plan 2040 update, which will shape the future of the city through its policies.

Another key aspect of addressing growth is retaining Redmond's livability.

Roberts said the city is looking at new trail systems to incorporate, which is also a part of the city's comprehensive plan 2040 update.

One such system involves new and better access to the Deschutes River and another potentially provides a trail connection from Redmond to Smith Rock.

These projects are still in the early planning stages, and nothing is for certain yet, but Roberts said these types of projects are vital to the success of the community.

"Having good trail connectivity in the future and moving forward will be important to maintain the vibrancy of our neighborhoods, and continue to make Redmond a livable place to be," Roberts said.

On Monday night, the Redmond Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee gave city staff the go-ahead to keep working on these possible trails.

Redmond is also dealing with more tourism as the city grows.

Not only is the city seeing big growth in hotel stays, the airport is also seeing more and more flights and passengers each day.

City Manager Keith Witcosky said the city is working to maintain Redmond's small-town feel while still accommodating more tourists.

He said the good news is the city is getting more money from the hotel tax, which will be reinvested into the city.

"The hotel tax and the revenue from tourism have doubled over the last eight years," Witcosky said. "We want to make sure that as Redmond grows, and as tourism grows, that our values align well with the strategies of bringing tourism and tourist events to Redmond."

The tourism industry in Redmond makes up about 15% of the private employment in the city. And the hotel tax brings in around $1.1 million for the city's general fund.

On Tuesday the Redmond City Council, along with other agencies involved in tourism, will be discussing how best to utilize that money moving forward.

Central Oregon / Government-politics / News

Jacob Larsen

Jacob Larsen is a reporter and weather anchor for NewsChannel 21. Learn more about Jacob here.

Comments

9 Comments

  1. “One such system involves new and better access to the Deschutes River and another potentially provides a trail connection from Redmond to Smith Rock.”

    Should have thought of that 20 years ago before Mcmansions were built all over it – neither the river or the state park are in Redmond

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