There's a continued effort in Aurora to complete projects that will draw people back to the community.
One of those projects is a new set of tennis courts. "We had a group of 5 people that came to us and said they wanted to raise money for a tennis court," Aurora Mayor Dave Long said. "We worked in conjunction with them, they raised about $309,000 and the majority of the tennis court was paid for. It came from individuals, it came from our foundations, it came from businesses," Long said.
Other projects that have been completed in Aurora in the last few years include a dog park, which was also completed with a public-private partnership of the city and local residents working together to raise the funds. A new kiosk and other improvements have been made at the Aurora cemetery through this time of cooperation, and this type of partnership is also resulting in the construction of 20 acres of land being built into brand new soccer fields. "A group of people again, they came up with money for irrigating the 20 acres, they reworked the land so we could have 4 fields we could rotate to," Long said.
The mayor says all of this is an effort to strengthen Aurora for the future. "We are looking to draw people back, young people, and we have quite a few that have come back. I think we are starting to see a trend like this in other communities as well," Long said.
Long believes the community working together is the key to success. "We have a great foundation base, we have a volunteer base where if they have an interest, they will help," Long said. "We are limited on using tax dollars, so to do these extras, I really think it takes a public-private partnership to get the projects completed."