Europe’s largest German language television network, ZDF, featured the Town of Hillsboro on a Jan. 12 segment marking the first year of the Biden presidency on its Foreign Journal news program. A ZDF news crew spent the day in Hillsboro on Dec. 15, interviewing Hillsboro Mayor Roger Vance and residents about the town’s newly completed infrastructure projects, the recently approved Federal infrastructure bill, the proposed “Build Back Better” bill, and how residents are coping with the ongoing pandemic.
Vance said ZDF Producer Nicola Wenz first heard about Hillsboro in the summer Washington Post article about Hillsboro’s ReThink9 infrastructure projects. “She saw this as the perfect opportunity for ZDF’s planned coverage of President Biden’s infrastructure plans and first year in office,” he said. “She was looking for perspectives from the ground level about how investing in infrastructure impacts communities, especially in rural America.”
Interviewed during the Hillsboro segment were Lauren and Luke Markham, who talked about the Town’s water system improvements and how their sons can now walk safely to Hillsboro Charter Academy on the Town’s new sidewalks.
Also interviewed were Paul Hrebenak and James Fraser, who moved to Hillsboro in 2020 and are restoring a signature 18th-century stone house in the center of town. The couple plans to open the house as a bed and breakfast—a private investment largely spurred by the own’s investment in becoming walkable and building critical infrastructure including a new drinking water system, first-ever municipal wastewater system, and high-speed broadband fiber-to-the-home delivered via town-owned conduit and fiber.
Vance said the ZDF crew was impressed by the projects’ delivery of cutting-edge infrastructure while complimenting the town’s historic integrity through context-sensitive design and materials.
“They remarked that Hillsboro’s setting and stone walls and architecture gave it a familiar European feel,” Vance said.
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