A Call for Youth Involvement in Planning the Future

Planning for the future should involve people who are going to live the future.

1 minute read

October 15, 2019, 6:00 AM PDT

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell

Saint Louis gateway arch and Kiener Park

Keiner Park, the Old St. Louis County Courthouse, and the Gateway Arch. | rawF8 / Shutterstock

Ray Hartmann, founder of The Riverfront Times, writes a column to discuss a notably lack from political processes in St. Louis:

We need more young people at the table of movers and shakers. Based upon nothing more than a gut feel, I'm thinking that in growing places such as Austin, Orlando, Las Vegas, Nashville and the like, a group of people assembled to plan the future would not average nearly 56 years in age.

The context for the discussion of getting youth more involved in planning for the future is a non-planning process: the recent convening of a Board of Freeholders that will consider structural changes to the governance of the city and county. The lessons clearly apply to more planning focused processes, however:

But let's be clear about this much, regardless of age or any other demographic factors: St. Louis city and county really need to be open to change. The structural status quo is not working in either the city nor the county, and even if we're somehow able to take the baby step of ending the psychological barrier between city and county that literally can be traced back almost a century and a half ago, the freeholder process would be a significant landmark.

Wednesday, October 9, 2019 in St. Louis Riverfront Times

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