When the Madrid High School Student Council approached the village board with a proposal to build a youth/community center, board members decided they should first send out a needs identification survey to get input from all citizens. Survey results revealed that citizens believed paving the village’s streets was top priority. So Madrid (pop. 257) set out to do just that. Village officials applied for and received $ 163,000 Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) that went toward paving 14 village blocks, based on traffic flow and school bus routes. The street project became part of a larger community improvement project that included construction of 10 new houses and recruitment of a new business.
The projects have all contributed to Madrid’s overall wellbeing. The streets are safer and no longer dirty, lessening health concerns. Property values also have increased.
“People have taken an improved approach toward community betterment,” said Tim Moore, village board chairman. “Nicer yards, new buildings and an improved public image.”
The village, located in Perkins County in western Nebraska, was recently chosen as a site for a new ethanol plant. While village officials may have tabled the proposal for a new youth/community center for the time being, they haven’t ruled it out for the future.
As to Madrid’s progress, “Things are going extremely well,” said Moore, pleased with how the village has made strides toward improving not only the infrastructure, but the overall attitudes of citizens regarding their community.