When 100 residents show up at a meeting to weigh in on the city’s long-term planning and review designs for future parks and trails, that’s solid community engagement.

When the community in question has a population of just more than 2,000, the turnout is even more impressive. That’s the track Peosta is on these days, and there are good things coming the way of this growing Dubuque County town.

Peosta caught statewide attention following the 2000 Census when it was deemed to be Iowa’s fastest-growing city. In 1990, Peosta had no more than 130 people — just 30 years ago. By 2000, it had jumped to more than 1,000. Twenty years later, that population has doubled, and the vibrancy of the community is obvious.

Developers are doubling down on that anticipated growth and community engagement with several new projects in the works. Construction kicked off recently to transform a vacant lot on the west end of the Northeast Iowa Community College campus into a four-story complex that will house about 190 students. The $14 million project is expected to be completed in August 2022.

The building will include 82 living units as well as a commons area, study rooms, a fitness area, outdoor parking and storage space for bikes, skis and snowboards. The one- to four-bedroom apartments only will be available for students attending NICC.

As that development took shape, City Administrator Whitney Baethke told the TH: “We are working really hard to position Peosta as a community of choice.”

Indeed, it seems to be working.

More than 100 people came in person and another 40 or so virtually to hear more about planned hiking trails and a park on 95 acres in the area. Just as Peosta Community Centre has become a community hub, officials and citizens alike know that more amenities for families on the go will continue to grow the community.

All that dovetails well with Dave and Tracie Pettera’s plan to open a bowling alley and community center in Peosta. Dubbed an entertainment venue, in addition to a bowling center, there’s an arcade, an outdoor patio and planned outdoor athletic activities.

Round Two opened late last year and also boasts a full bar, lunch and dinner menu and private party rooms.

And there are more plans in the works. Two beverage brands well known in Dubuque are making plans for a collaborative effort to open in Peosta later this year.

Jumble Coffee Co. owners joined forces with the owners of Dimensional Brewing Co. to announce they will open two new businesses on Thunder Valley Drive in Peosta.

It’s exciting to see so much development in Peosta as it grows from a “bedroom community” to a community of choice. That the residents of Peosta are engaged and involved will help bolster this town with true community spirit.

Editorials reflect the consensus of the Telegraph Herald Editorial Board.

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