Wednesday, March 19, 2014

As the farmers market follies morph into farce, City Hall just stands there. Why is that?

It ain't rocket science.

the action of leading a group of people or an organization.
"different styles of leadership"
synonyms: guidance, direction, control, management, superintendence, supervision

Everything about the current farmers market expansion discussion is spasmodic and misdirected. It came surreptitiously from the crypt to the Board of Works last fall ...

Budgetary back alley to the Farmers Market? Let's face the music and dance.

 ... and managed to arouse in council person John Gonder and a handful of others that singular quality always guaranteed to  arouse suspicion and bile amongst the fogies -- namely, daring to think outside the box -- and in turn, this provocation sent the oft-indemnified farmers market queenpin into a tizzy ...

The farmers market discussion to too important to be left to the Marktmeister alone.

 ... leading us now to yet another repulsive example of Develop New Albany's amazing inability (read: unwillingness) to decide what "non-political" really means, and to apply the definition with consistency. Spin the wheel again, Vanna.

Develop New Albany's on-line farmers market "poll" is a reeking, juvenile cesspool of intellectual dishonesty.

So, I decided to give them a dose of their own shamelessly propagandistic medicine.

Yo, DNA: Here are some examples of OUR propaganda. You can have the hearts. We'll take the minds.

Then it occurred to me that perhaps the farmers location matters more in proximity to the Marktmeister's own building than the city as a whole.

Maybe the city could buy indoor space for the Winter Farmers Market. Would $108K do it?

Not really; I'd been holding on to that one for a while.

Back to the tip-off: Leadership.

Is City Hall exercising any of it as this annoying spectacle unfolds?

Or is the general idea to allow otherwise well-meaning people to metaphorically bash each other's brains in (speak for yourself), until none are left standing ... to demand a Speck study for the street grid but reject an economic development strategy for downtown ... to just stand there and be non-participatory?

One more time: The city needs to be stirred from its present somnolent resting place and take a share of the farmers market issue back into its possession. It is city property, and it consequently "belongs" to us all. What this looks like at present is a transparent payback to Develop New Albany's self-interested cadres, but the farmers market is far more important than just that, and its future needs to be studied with the city's active, directed, interested participation -- not the bizarrely detached passivity it has displayed thus far.


Antiques Attic said...

I love the Farmer's Market, I shop it myself in the summer months. I love the location, and yes it brings me some additional foot traffic one day a week during the summer. Does that mean increased revenue? Some times yes, but usually not because the public has come to shop the market and then maybe explore what else is downtown but has already accomplished their goal for the day. Still great exposure for my business because some people will return on another day after spotting my store.

Do I want to see it moved to a different location? Not really, B U T , I do want what is best for my community. SO I have been trying to use what I consider to be common sense logic for my decision on what side I should stand on the issue.

Let me start with the use of the word EXPANSION being used. Is it truly an expansion when it will still have the same footprint in square footage? Will it not lose one or two vendor spots to make room for a restroom? Adding shelter roofs and a restroom could be considered an IMPROVEMENT but EXPANSION and cabability for growth in vendor size in the future?

Cost of doing business, something I deal with regularly in making decisions concerning my business. Once again logic jumps in my face about the cost of this so called EXPANSION (IMPROVEMENT). To add additional roof structures and a bathroom at this cost appears extreme and I would definately get as many estimates as possible to come to a decision before acting out.

Another question I keep having is why does it need a restroom and who will maintain and clean this restroom and at what taxpayer cost.

Lastly, none of this addresses future growth and especially does not solve the problem of the winter months.

Jeff Gillenwater said...

I'm reminded that while the City was hastily spending three-quarters of a million on another facility a scant two blocks away that many of us suggested a more thoughtful approach at the time: namely, that multiple potential locations and uses for said facility should be considered prior to dumping that much cash. We could have created far greater utility for less money.

Now we have a "park" that's poorly designed for either of the only two regularly scheduled downtown activities requiring such a space while the City is planning to dump another $320K or so into another facility sans any sort of actual planning process again.

Ignorance is expensive but being stupidly obstinate is its own sort of poverty.