In September, Oro Valley Mayor Paul Loomis asked members of the community to share their thoughts about community sustainability. Guests at the State of the Town address were given oversized postcards, asking them to define community sustainability, and identify their visions for the town of Oro Valley.

Thirty-one people took the time — and more comments would be welcome.

Oro Valley public information officer Mary Davis shared the comments received thus far.

How do people define community sustainability? What does community sustainability mean to them? Here’s a sampling.

A sustainable community is a clean, green and safe community, a place that has a clear vision for its future, with strong jobs, plenty of culture, a great place to work and live. In a sustainable Oro Valley, people have the ability to stay in Oro Valley and not have to travel to Phoenix or Tucson for services. It has good schools. It is a place where future generations can have the same, if not more, than those alive today.

A sustainable community is a place where people and politicians compromise on issues so that decisions can be made and implemented. It is a place that is able to take care of everyone and be productive and prosperous. It is responsible with water, protects abundant natural resources, and provides for its citizens while reducing negative impacts. It removes barriers to smart growth; or, in another’s words, it offers “growth with foresight.”

A sustainable community offers convenience, safety, shopping, culture, infrastructure, and balance. Its citizens are well-informed and can speak with one another. It has an awareness of what its residents want and need.

What is your vision for the Town of Oro Valley? Again, a sampling.

People identify good schools and transportation, wise growth, leadership in solar energy technology and biotechnology, an excellent reputation and a friendly image, a town that helps business prosper. They want an innovative, safe community with moderate growth, a strong economy, a position of leadership in Southern Arizona. They want improved mass transit, cooperation with other jurisdictions, beauty, culture, and status as a premier place to raise a family.

Many people think expressions of about what we want amount to hooey. We disagree. How does a community know where to go if it doesn’t know what it wants to be?

What do you think about Oro Valley? Marana? The Northwest? How might you define community sustainability? What’s your vision? Speak up. Share it. Own a part of the future.

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