Articles in the Headline Category
I’ve touched on this before in other posts, but it is worth highlighting again. The great move from the city to the suburbs has been attributed to various factors: changing lifestyle preferences, the automobile, subsidies to sprawl, urban industrial pollution, etc. While there is probably truth in all of these, possibly the most powerful of them all is greenfield economics.
What is greenfield economics? This is simply the set of conditions that flow from building on new territory or exploiting new markets vs. redevelopment of old places, organizations, etc.
Buffalo has a unique opportunity to recapture a share of the middle class and become a thriving city once again. It’s not terribly difficult, it’s happening already, and the benefits could be enormous. It just needs to market itself to the retiring baby boomers as a place to retire.
Yes, I know that everyone’s grandparents couldn’t wait to leave the ice and snow for sunny Florida. But there are certain demographic tides that even the most cynical of people cannot ignore. According to the LA Times, “This year, the oldest of the 78 million people born from 1946 to 1964 are turning 65 and becoming senior citizens. Because of the immense size of this baby boom generation, the number of senior citizens will more than double between now and 2050, from 40 million to 89 million.
As you may have heard, Detroit’s excitedly awaited Woodward Light Rail was nixed last week by Mayor Bing and Federal Transportation Secretary Ray Lahood in favor of a 110-mile regional Bus Rapid Transit System. Officials expressed concern that the original 3-mile light rail plan wouldn’t connect Detroiters with suburban jobs, which is odd because the original proposal (which was awarded federal funding) wasn’t about connecting people with suburban jobs at all. It was about holding a carrot out to private developers so as to develop Midtown Detroit into a truly urban neighborhood. It wasn’t about connecting what already exists, but about building the transportation framework for what could be.
Cleveland’s beloved “working-class intellectual” Harvey Pekar said these words in the late 1990s, but they are equally relevant today. Not much has changed with respect to the state of our central city and suburban attitudes about regional cooperation. Imagine if we had heeded these words more than a decade ago, how much different things might be for this region now. This is especially important as the region — finally — embarks on a regional planning effort thanks to the $5 million grant from Obama’s Sustainable Communities Program. Northeast Ohio needs to be bold and unselfish. It is fighting for its life.
Architecture, Headline, Real Estate, Sprawl, Urban Planning »
It’s been twenty-two years since I moved from the Rust Belt to West Palm Beach, Florida. Born, raised and schooled in Michigan, I was in a relationship at the time and it seemed that all we talked about was where and when we were going to move out of the state. Being 28 years old, I was at a point in my career as an urban planner where the grass really did seem like it was greener someplace else. I had tired of the challenges associated with economic restructuring and decline. Enduring the cloudy, wet
and cold winter months was another factor which contributed to the desire for a warmer climate. As it turned out, a series of events conspired to make a move possible. Since then, it’s been quite the roller coaster ride which leaves me now contemplating either a move back or taking on more work in the area.
To hear some conservative commenters tell it, Indiana should be wiping the floor with Ohio and Michigan.
Afterall, Detroit’s fundamental problem is its liberalness, according to the Wall Street Journal. And Ohio Governor John Kasich, he’s busy curing all the state’s ailments with “business friendliness.” Ditto goes for “open for business” Wisconsin.
It’s difficult to say whether Indiana is truly more economically healthy than its neighbors to the northeast and east. But one thing is clear, while Ohio and Michigan residents might be racing for the door, they’re not tripping over eachother at the Indiana border.
Good Ideas, Headline »
#1. Paint it green/orange/rainbow swirls. Whatever. The point is, it needs some lacquer, like makeup, to spruce it up.
#2. Put some chairs on it. (Tables: bonus!)
#3. Add some barriers so cars can’t drive onto it. Slabs of broken concrete work nicely. Lovely planters are also good if you want to get fancy about it.
The city commissioners of Dayton, Ohio have voted unanimously to approve a plan to make the city more “immigrant-friendly.” Entitled, Welcome Dayton Plan-Immigrant-Friendly City, the decision is an encouraging step towards greater cultural and ethnic diversity, social and economic justice, and community revitalization in the hometown of the Wright Brothers.
Kudos to the City of Dayton for getting it right and rejecting the racial and ethnic bigotry spewed by too many in Arizona, Alabama, and Georgia that advocated and approved anti-immigrant laws. My guess is those states are going to rue the day they passed their restrictive immigration laws.
Rust Wire is honored to have been given permission to reprint this article by Cleveland’s foremost muckracker, Roldo Bartimole, a former Plain Dealer reporter and local folk hero with encyclopedic knowledge of the region and the guts to tell it like it is.
He has written this piece about how Cleveland’s elites have enriched themselves at the expense of the Cleveland Public Schools as a matter of course for decades. He was inspired by a recent Plain Dealer article that reported 300 CMSD teachers have been given a stay from layoffs.
Civic corruption comes in many forms. We have been hearing a lot about corruption these days. However, the focus is very narrow. Unnecessarily so.