Friday, May 26, 2017

Good points aplenty: "The big urban mistake: Building for tourism vs. livability."

Team Gahan and Develop New Albany should be locked into a room together.

That'd be enough in itself, but they shouldn't be allowed to come out.

Okay, at least not until each one of them has read this article and are compelled to comment publicly.

As we know, they're unlikely to read this or any other essay, so sound off, fellow dissidents. How is Dear Leader doing according to the criteria herein? I'm sure the upper echelons at Flaherty and Collins have a point of view.

Public housing residents likely do, too. Thanks for the link, MW.


... I’m painting with a bit of a broad brush, but essentially what so many cities are currently experiencing is the dilemma of whether to invest in large urban draws that will bring outside money in, or invest in a growing and changing downtown residential population that yearns for investments in keeping them there. To put it simply, do cities invest in big projects that create an entertaining space that grows tourism, or do they invest in the people that have already taken a risk by moving back into their long-dormant downtowns?


City leaders, this one’s for you. You can either cater to your new residents by going into the downtown apartment buildings and listening to real people, or you can hop on the big ticket project train en route to a revolving door downtown. You can either build for livability or build for fleeting, often overrated promises of tourism revenue. You can facilitate local small business and community development, or you can create a short-lived wow-factor by opening the floodgates to developers and business interests who take money out of our communities. You can empower and invest in your new downtown residents and let THEM be the ambassadors for our growing urban paradises, or you can ignore them and build casinos and other flashy complexes that cater to the outsider and likely line the pockets of someone beyond the boundaries of the community.

The choice, as always, is yours to make. Choose to invest in your residents and local business owners… the people that invested first… tourism, development and financial success will likely follow. Empower your people, honor the risk they took by taking one yourself, and like happy employees of a strong company, they will take care of everything else.

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