In 2015, the citizens of Norman overwhelmingly came together to chart a new course for our community. With 72% of the vote, we decided to invest in our quality of life by adopting Norman Forward.

We have enjoyed big dividends since then; two world-class libraries, and fantastic aquatic and tennis facilities at Westwood Park.

These are just the beginning of what is in store for Norman all because we as citizens had a vision for what we want our community to be.

Last year, the citizen-led advisory committees that oversees each of the Norman Forward projects realized more investment was needed if the original vision of Norman Forward was to be realized. These neighbors of ours demanded of our city council another chance to fulfill our community need. Those demands have brought us to this important election on Tuesday, Aug. 25.

Not wanting to shortchange or build anything less than what our community deserves; much thought, planning, design and budgeting has taken place to ensure Norman Forward is completed how we all envisioned in 2015. A recent study projects a $67.4 million annual economic impact from just the basketball courts, baseball/softball diamonds, soccer fields, and swimming lanes as proposed.

While the economic reasons are positively staggering, those are not the most important reasons to support Proposition 1 at the ballot. Rather, the needs of our citizens should and have taken top billing in this effort. From 4 to 94, there is something in this Proposition for everyone. We can and will have first-class opportunities for our citizens if this is adopted next Tuesday.

I have been lucky to coach my children in basketball, baseball and soccer, and have traveled with them throughout central Oklahoma to watch them play. All of our kids, regardless of skill level and economic status, deserve the opportunity to play and recreate at top-notch facilities in Norman. Our seniors deserve a comprehensive wellness center that is the envy of the region.

We can make all of this and more happen by voting yes on Proposition 1. Let us keep investing in ourselves by supporting these generational projects. Join me in voting yes, so we can keep moving Norman Forward!

Scott Martin, Norman Chamber of Commerce President/CEO, can be reached at 405-321-7260.

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