This article, originally published by Al Zucaro on BocaWatch.org, is preserved for historical purposes by Massive Impressions Online Marketing in Boca Raton.
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A house divided against itself cannot stand. It is high time for us to look at our divisions and realize that we are all diminished by the many “us vs. them” perpetuations which keep Boca from reaching its greatest potential. Division is not a functional approach to advance a city’s greatness. ONE BOCA – VISION 2030 is what I propose to help our city be the best it can be, so that our kids raise their kids where they were raised.
As I consistently seek the center of this city, I both intrigue and offend some constituents of all factions. I believe that for Boca to become a truly great city, we need to put the divisions aside and focus on what we have in common and what works. A few divisions that have been brought to my attention include: Developers v. Residents, The Chamber v. The DBA, and Boca Watch v. Boca Voice. How much iteration of “us against them” can a town like Boca sustain? Enough already! Look at issues. Respect other opinions. Envision what really works for Boca. We had a VISION 90 which either worked great or went completely off the rails, depending on your point of view. My ONE BOCA – VISION 2030 proposal is for your consideration.
I propose that leaders of the private sector segments engage in an ongoing, structured and facilitated dialogue which allows all to air their grievances; discover their common ground and share what they’d like Boca to be in 2030.
At the conclusion, a plan of action, with milestones and accountabilities built in for future elected officials to follow can be publicized and embraced. I believe that by looking forward, rather than backwards, we will likely discover that what we all want for Boca’s next generation is very similar.
All options should be on the table. If various parties can agree on what we want for our kids’ futures, and build accountability into a plan of action, then nobody’s sensibilities should be offended. Let’s look at what works and set aside the constraints of our past. Let’s create a unified vision. This would have to be facilitated by an outside urban planner, or a professional mediator, or clergy. It would need to be funded and would take time. Still, we must talk about what we need to talk about.
We, here in Boca Raton, have either grown beautifully, or way too fast, depending on your view. What is clear is that there is no vision for what is to come. We are a city that lives dollar by dollar, building by building, election cycle by election cycle, and one point of view against one point of view. ONE BOCA – VISION 2030 holds the promise, if done well, of a future which is created now out of what we have in common, and not what divides us.
Who is willing to step up, sit down, lay down the hostilities, and create a future? If we don’t, we’ll remain a city divided against itself. We may be able to stand, but we for sure won’t be Boca at its best.