City of Hobart Mayor Brian Snedecor gave his annual State of the City Address on Wednesday to members of the Chamber of Commerce, heads of various departments and local business owners. Many in attendance, however, would have called it a celebration rather than an address.
Hosted by the Festival Park's Hobart Community Center, those who attended were greeted with a delicious buffet from China Restaurant, located on 3rd Street in Hobart. After lunch, Mayor Snedecor spoke about the city’s improvements and accomplishments from the 2016 year, from municipal additions such as a new roundabout on 61st Avenue, to major accomplishments like the city's lowest crime rate in 20 years.
“Today is like a snapshot of what happened this past year,” Mayor Snedecor explained. “Crime rate is down, we are seeing a resurgence of our downtown area and for the second year in a row, we’ve been awarded the South Shore Clean Cities Green Fleet’s Community of the Year Award for our green initiatives.”
These were just some of the city’s incredible achievements mentioned in the report. Others included major road and infrastructure improvements, environmental studies and a new Hobart Parks Department Master Plan. Updated every five years, the Master Plan is the city’s plan for upcoming upgrades and projects.
“The purpose of the update is to compete for grant funding from the state government so we can fund these projects,” explained Sergio Mendoza, the City Planner. “But we also want to get the community involved with the upgrades and the projects. We want to hear their feedback. That’s why we hold forums and public meetings so people can see what we have planned for the community.”
Community outreach and involvement was a significant factor in the city’s past year of success. From programs with the Hobart Police Department - like the Women’s Self Defense Class - to a number of events hosted by the Parks Department at Hobart Events. The first-ever Great Citywide Hobart Scavenger Hunt is just one of the great family-friendly gatherings offered by the dedicated employees of the City of Hobart.
“The Great Hobart Hunt is a city wide scavenger hunt, similar to the Amazing Race,” said Nikki Lopez, the Event Director of the Hobart Events. “The community really took to it. Plus, it’s a great marketing tool for the local businesses and areas of the community that we are really proud of.”
Not only did Mayor Snedecor put the spotlight on the year’s past success, he also highlighted some important local businesses, like the SouthLake Mall and a new restaurant opening soon that has the town buzzing.
Teddian Jackson has been in the restaurant business for almost 17 years, but in two months, he will be taking a crack at being an entrepreneur for the first time.
“The restaurant will be called Montego Bay Grille and it will feature a fusion of Caribbean and other vibrant flavors,” Jackson said.
The restaurant will open in Hobart’s scenic downtown, adding to the revival of the area of which the Mayor and the citizens of Hobart are proud.
“I saw a resurgence in the downtown area and I had this vision,” Jackson explained. “We have a very scenic downtown, we have a beautiful lake and beautiful views. I saw that and I knew that I had to tap in early to be a part of this great community.”
That vision was shared with everyone who attended the annual report Wednesday afternoon. The vision of a vibrant and growing city with a focus on those in the community was at the core of every event and every improvement made for the city of Hobart.
“We want to make it so that Hobart has something to offer everybody,” Mayor Snedecor said. “It’s a really exciting time and I’m glad to be a part of it.”
To stay up to date on upcoming news and events, visit www.cityofhobart.org.
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