BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) –It all started as a proud mother’s Facebook post, that transitioned into a real-life pitch before Bakersfield’s planning commission.
“Just a simple drawing by a young man that had a vision for his community turned into some and something so much bigger. But it was really to see the journey that his mom went on afterwards to showing how he had been thinking of these kind of things since he was two or three years old,” Ward 3 Commissioner Cassie Bittle said.
Fifth grade student Gentry Starr said, “There’s not many parks in this area and definitely not downtown. Considering that we want to bring ten thousand people to downtown, I’d probably build this.”
A drawing, once a blueprint, comes to life. He’s been doing this for a while.
“And our planning division was so helpful, they overlaid his vision onto the actual map and show him how is it going to look like? He just had it laid on the page. But he drew it so good. It looked like that he actually had an overlay by himself,” Planning Commissioner Gurtarpreet Kaur explained.
Gentry has plans for transportation around town too.
It all started when he was around 3 years old when he showed interest in street signs.
Now a fifth grader, he is using his time to envision Bakersfield as a better place– as a great idea for what he wants to be when he grows up.
“I want to be a civil engineer,” Gentry added.
When Gentry was asked about his hobbies, he lit up talking about a video game.
A video game that brings out his interests even more.
“It’s called Cities: Skylines and in the video game, you have to worry about buildings, the plumbing in the buildings, and the electrical wirings. It’s all just so interesting to me. I really enjoy it.”
Gurtarpreet added, “Kudos to Gentry that he actually showed the courage to show up to the meeting and then presented his vision to us. And he’s an inspiration to all the young kids out there that if you dream it, you can do it.”
When you’re younger you tend to have so many creative ideas down on paper, it was really great to see the board members encourage him to continue creating as one day it could perhaps turn into the real deal. Sounds like we have the next best Bakersfield civil engineer on our hands.