Flagstaff is growing, and growing fast. Our tourist industry is booming and our student population will increase 30% in the next decade. Our community needs the proper infrastructure to deal with these pressures and ensure the economic benefits similarly grow our residents’ quality of life rather than diminish it. Our transportation system has yet to catch up with the growth that has already occurred. Our water resources need to be properly sustained to deal with these pressures for our current and future generations, and we need to further our alternative energies
How do we do this? By more creative thinking and applying the latest innovations to our city for greater government efficiency and improved quality of life. In the US and abroad we are seeing cost-effective innovations being brought to cities and states. For example, recycled plastic has been added into asphalt to double the resilience of roads. This is being done in Texas right now.
Additive manufacturing, also known as 3-D printing, has opened a new world of industry and that could be fostered in our town with minimal land requirements, and has the capability to produce solar panels, wind turbines, biotechnologies, and so much more. In fact, 2 out of the top 6 fastest growing industries over the next decade are solar energy and 3D printing. And guess what, our engineering program at NAU is ranked in the top 50 in America and is developing additive manufacturing. Even our arts department is becoming experts in its use. We have people already here to do the job.