CHESAPEAKE, Va. (WAVY) – Several years ago, a travel magazine named Chesapeake “the most boring city in America.” However, if you listened to today’s virtual State of the City address, you wouldn’t consider things to be dull.

A lot has changed since last year’s State of the City address when Mayor Rick West addressed a packed room before things shut down. After a tough year, his eyes are on the future.

West says Chesapeake is a city that cares.

“In the midst of challenge, Chesapeake people did what they do best,” said West. “They rose up and they joined together and gave of themselves to help others.”

West says the city is built on two ships: relationships and partnerships.

One partnership is with Chesapeake Regional Healthcare, which is expanding.

“An expansion of hospital services in the area of cancer treatment, heart health, and behavioral health was needed,” said Robin Tull, Chair of the Chesapeake Hospital Authority Board.

Another partnership in the city includes Dollar Tree and the Summit Pointe development, which leaders hope becomes the region’s newest metropolitan center.

“Summit Pointe is the center of our region’s largest central business district,” said Dollar Tree Senior Vice President Chris Williams. “Residents have moved into their new homes. Office tenants are open and additional office tenants are being signed.”

West talked about relationships that include health leaders and healthcare workers. He said over 75 percent of citizens 65 and older have been fully vaccinated.

The Mayor also said the city named a Chief Equity Officer over the summer. West says Dr. Wanda Bailey will work “to reshape and redefine what equality truly means for all of us.”

The city manager says leaders will ensure the city is ready and able to support its nearly 250,000 residents, no matter what they are looking for.

“We will make Chesapeake an exceptional place to live, learn, work, farm and play,” said City Manager Christopher Price. “We will provide outstanding service to our customers and community and we will be fiscally responsible and sustainable.”

West hopes next year’s state of the city address will be in-person, in front of a crowd. In the meantime, he encourages people to continue wearing a mask, practicing social distancing, and getting a vaccine when it’s their turn.