BISMARCK, N.D. (KXNET) — As North Dakota grows in population, cities within the state continue to develop.

The City of Bismarck Community Development Department has released the first draft of Bismarck’s 2045 Comprehensive Plan.

Together 2045.

The name and mantra for Bismarck’s game plan for the next quarter of a century.

The plan is divided into five sections: shape, inhabit, thrive, growth and connection.

“In that time frame, we anticipate within the Bismarck area adding another 25,000 residents to the community. So, essentially another thousand people per year, you could think of it, out to the year 2045. And so, what that comprehensive plan does for us is it really provides a roadmap for the physical development of the community over the next 25 years,” said Ben Ehreth, the Community Development Director for the City of Bismarck.

The plan is aimed at anticipating changes to the economy, technology, the environment and society.

It also lays out a new formation of compact neighborhoods, adding downtown accessibility, and more access to the Missouri River.

Data collected from the city shows residents want to see more affordable housing and year-round recreation.

“We need to start catering to our kids and families who move here, so they have recreation after the fact. When their day is done with work, they can do something,” said Jim Peluso, a Bismarck Resident who is also a Burleigh County Commissioner.

The Community Development Department has created a focus group, partnering with students from the Career and Technical Academy.

Ehreth added, receiving feedback from a younger demographic is key in the project, because they are the generations that will see the vision come to life.

He said, “We want to try to understand how to retract and retain you know, the highly skilled and talented individuals that we have in the community. So having a younger person’s perspective is something we’ve been looking at and trying to engage that population.”

Community Development Department members welcome all comments in working to make Bismarck better than ever.

The next public comment meeting is on July 27 at the Bismarck County Building.

The public comment period is open until September 9.