David Gulak, center left, and Josh Sullivan, center right, co-owners of Meridians Kitchen and Bar in Fairfield, opened the restaurant in 2019. Currently offering takeout only, the restaurant is a bright development in Fairfield’s downtown. The town is distributing a survey to residents and businesses to find out where the town wants to go in the future and build on the businesses that have hung on through the pandemic. Michael G. Seamans/Morning Sentinel file

FAIRFIELD — Town officials and the Fairfield Economic and Community Development Committee have come together to launch a survey to explore what economic opportunities the town’s assets and riverfront amenities hold. 

The questionnaire, which all residents and business owners are encouraged to fill out, examines multiple topics regarding nearby bodies of water, public boat launch accessibility, the enhancement and maintenance of the Mill Island playground and the possible construction of a concert venue space. 

In a media release sent out Thursday, Town Manager Michelle Flewelling further explained the survey’s objective.

“Fairfield’s central geography, direct I-95 access, and location within the Kennebec River valley provide the town with several unique growth and recreational opportunities,” Flewelling said. “Feedback that is received will be used to prioritize and evaluate development initiatives and quality of life projects, including potential enhancements to riverfront open spaces, downtown vibrancy, and community connectivity. Our community and their suggestions toward bettering Fairfield’s characteristics is the key objective of this survey.”

The Town Council and the development committee hope to use the results of the survey to prioritize redevelopment plans, the release said.

“Public engagement and robust community input data are vital to designing projects and implementing the long-term success of development initiatives,” said Garvan Donegan, director of innovation, planning and economic development at the Central Maine Growth Council. “This survey will allow FECDC to broaden public input from the community across key planning themes and will assist in identifying prospective projects and grant possibilities.” 

The survey is composed of various questions, including: “Which features would you like to see incorporated into the Town of Fairfield’s future waterfront development?” And, “there are different types of playgrounds: ones that have natural elements only, some that have pre-constructed elements only, and some that have a combination of natural and pre-constructed elements. Which would you prefer on Mill Island Park?”

Mill Island Park is currently owned and operated by the town for public use during the day and can be reserved for recreational activities and family gatherings.

Residents and business owners can access the survey through the Central Maine Growth Council’s website.

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