Building Communities

Watford City, North Dakota

Like many rural communities in the Midwest, Watford City is a friendly community with strong ties to the land, a focus on families, and very generous to residents and visitors.  A very positive dynamic transcends the community; with a barn-raising mentality that gets things done for its current and future generations.

The results of this attitude are present everywhere with a downtown that showcases recent business investments and streetscape improvements, a handsome visitor center that greets newcomers to the area with a bright smile, and hotel construction that states the community is open for business.

Unlike most rural communities in America, however, Watford City is exploding with growth.  The pace of growth is so fast that no one really knows the current population of the city and surrounding area.  Furthermore, no one really knows when it will end…and how big Watford City will be when the Bakken Boom slows.

Watford City is not along for the ride, however.  Watford City is prepared to lead the growth dynamic in order that the current strong economic conditions promote a healthy, diversified economy that can become a best practice in terms of how a rural community can shape growth into long-term community assets and livability.

What is most impressive about Watford City is the dynamic leadership that envisions and enacts one successful project after another.  Some communities talk about making improvements, Watford City just does it.  And does it well.

Most communities that succeed are benefitted by a gentle breeze of economic activity that they can proactively manage.   In Watford City and throughout the Bakken, it is a whirlwind.  Only proactive communities will come out better on the back end of the oil industry build out.  For the others, the growth will consume their short term livability and create long-term ghost towns that will stand as a reminder of the roaring start to the 21st Century.

Watford City will shape its future.   Few communities of under 7000 population could possibly effectively implement ten Strategies and nine Quality of Life Initiatives.  Watford City will.   Its legacy depends upon it.

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