FOR THOSE disgusted with events like the recent transit strike - in which deals are done in closed rooms with citizens having little say in things that directly affect their lives - here's an antidote:

Tonight, citizens get a chance to interview five finalists contending to create a master plan for the central Delaware waterfront.

The Delaware River Waterfront Corporation is hosting the meeting, at which citizens can hear how firms would approach the process that will literally lay the groundwork for streets, land use, public access and more for the central Delaware.

This meeting is a milestone in this city.

It's hard to remember a project of this size having the level of public input that this one has enjoyed. It's also hard to imagine a project that can have a more significant impact on the city than this, as the city reclaims its waterfront and attracts more people to live, work and play here.

It's also one of the few places that we get to see just what can happen when bad planning happens. Just look at the waterfront now, with its big-box stores and lack of access to the river. Tonight's event is 6:30-8:30, Festival Pier, Columbus Boulevard at Spring Garden Street. *