Riverside Reborn

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Jessica Bills -- Riverside Renaissance construction projects near completion in 2012.

After several years of starting a project that was deemed to be completed within five years, the Riverside Renaissance nears completion with a nearly $1.57 billion initiative.

The project that was proposed in 2006 will soon come to an end after many of the final touches are done.

The Riverside Renaissance is a project for the city of Riverside that focused on beautifying the city by renovating existing cites.

Many parks and infrastructures now give the city a new appearance. With the improvements in place, the city could potentially attract newcomers, as well as businesses where young college students could seek job opportunities.

For many years there was a challenge with retention of students currently attending the four colleges in the city of Riverside, which include: Riverside City College, University of California, Riverside, La Sierra University and California Baptist University. With these new renovations, there are high hopes among city officials that the students will stay in the area and help grow new professional businesses.

The benefits that student retention has on the city overall are very positive as this can allow it to grow stronger economically. Staying in the area would cut commuting cost as there would be no need to travel a far distance to go to work.

The beautification project also promises to make Riverside a more enticing tourist destination. Increased tourist traffic will help generate revenue for the city to allow even better improvements.

The strongest motive to engage in the Riverside Renaissance was to not only renovate the entire city, but also to make sure that the people who currently living in the city consider Riverside to be their home. The rebirth project would ensure that Riverside is a place where people want to stay and make their permanent home.

While money was needed to complete other more important projects in the city of Riverside, the appearance of the city allows tourists to have a reason to take the time to see all of the new innovations, steadily bringing in revenue to be used for other things.

Also, as mentioned in www. riversiderenaissance.org, “Beneath the surface, it also incorporates innovative ideas and utilizes energy-efficient practices and designs. All of which goes to accommodate the community needs of the next 20 years.”

There are six different categories that were included in the innovation projects. These areas are parks, public safety, arts and culture, public utilities, public works and airports.

According to www. riversiderenaissance.org, “$1.40 billion in projects are underway, these account for 90 percent of the total, 270 projects are already completed, 80 projects are under construction, 40 projects are out to bid in design, and 66 projects are in redevelopment areas.”

These projects were all started to not only attract tourists but also keep Riverside natives happy. Anyone can visit these sites and enjoy the benefits of the beautification projects. People do not need to go to another city to be satisfied.

“The Riverside Renaissance program is one of the main tools that has helped secure Riverside’s place as a leading and innovative city,” Mayor Ron Loveridge said. “It helped beautify our city and generate much needed economic activity.”

Along with this, the physical appearance will change the way students feel. Having an aesthetically pleasing city, whose residents are active and ready to protect their community may discourage criminal activity. A safer city will encourage families to stay and raise their children.

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