Good things in Bossier

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Sometimes the stars just seem to align and lots of good news comes along in wave after wave. And that’s what appears to be happening in Bossier City and Parish over the last few weeks.carlson-marty

Just a few recent examples to celebrate living in this little corner of northwest Louisiana include …

This past weekend’s headline in our Gannett daily local: “Bossier schools shatter AP records.” The article highlighted the school district’s distinction “… by the Louisiana Department of Education as a leader in the state for its 2015 Advanced Placement scores.”

The article quoted Bossier Parish Superintendent of Schools D.C. Machen applauding, “… both our students and teachers for these outstanding results … This is also indicative that investing in public schools by increasing student access to AP courses and providing professional development for teachers is truly a win for the betterment of our community.”

In another school district “win,” new facilities are opening this fall in north Bossier, and in addition to Kingston Elementary School, the district’s new technology and career facility will make available to Bossier students cutting-edge education, technology and employment opportunities.

In Bossier Parish, news that the Bossier Parish Police Jury has elected to create an official Parks and Recreation Department is probably overdue.

For years the Jury has been adding sports and recreation facilities around the parish, with some, like the North Bossier Park being cooperative efforts between the city, parish and school board. But the Jury’s funded significant parks and sports facilities at its expense around the parish.

And the good news: According to Parish Administrator Bill Altimus, the new Parks and Recreation Department will be funded by a recurring revenue source so Bossier taxpayers still won’t see any additional costs to witnessing even more efforts to provide parks and recreation offerings in Bossier.

Parks and Rec committee chair Mac Plummer noted that these efforts enhance quality of life in Bossier and are a draw to new families. No doubt newly appointed Parks and Rec Director Warren Saucier is already at work ensuring Plummer’s observation continues in Bossier.

It wasn’t too many years ago that the Jury didn’t have much in the way of “departments” except for highway operations – which wasn’t particularly well funded.

Today that very active highway department is joined by a sewer department, and now a designated parks and recreation effort. Dedicated representation and effective administration appears an effective combination for parish growth.

It doesn’t seem to matter where one looks in Bossier City, there’s something new happening. New retail and restaurant construction along Airline Drive is complimented by the city’s work to build a new road behind the new shopping area to relieve traffic congestion on Airline.

Downtown Bossier is about to experience a re-make as the city has dedicated in excess of $10 million to do everything from utility relocations to improving streets and building at least one new street. Streetscape efforts will renew the area and new construction will soon transform this area of Bossier into a desirable residential, retail and recreational area.

And who hasn’t enjoyed Bossier’s new Farmer’s Market on Saturdays at Pierre Bossier Mall?

South Bossier is suddenly enjoying significant commercial growth while east Bossier’s education and technology corridor is witnessing new construction and expansions for both Bossier Parish Community College and Cyber Innovation Center. On top of all of this great news, the stars really aligned for Barksdale AFB as our community welcomed General Robin Rand who late last month assumed command of Air Force Global Strike Command. As a result, it’s anticipated that our military community will grow and hopefully enjoy all that Bossier has to offer.

Enjoying all that Bossier has to offer will soon be a near full time experience.

Marty Carlson is a columnist for the BPT. She may be reached at martycarlson1218@gmail.com