Monday, March 29, 2010

Monday Morning Linkages

All locally oriented today. FortWorthology is raising hell with regard to the Fort Worth streetcar and doing so justly and admirably. CarFreeInBigD salutes westwardly:
If Fort Worth continues to drop the ball on projects like the streetcar, we will lose out. These cities are competing with us for the jobs and vitality of the future, and we know that ever-increasing numbers of young creatives and professionals no longer wish to have the same suburban/car-dominated life that their parents and grandparents had. They want real choice, in living arrangement and transportation (and make no mistake, these two things are deeply linked – effective transit helps build effective mixed-use living arrangements, and vice versa). They will go where they can get these things, and if they can’t get them here, we’ll fall behind. If Fort Worth wants to compete on the global stage, we have to start getting serious about this sort of thing. It is time Fort Worth stopped wishing to remain a “small town” forever and started acting like the proud, vibrant, major American city it is.
Two key components. This is about real choice (which I harp on constantly) and economic development. Streetcars are what unlocked and created the neighborhoods immediately adjacent to downtowns, and crazy as it sounds, they are what will revitalize those same areas which have been decimated by speculation, zoning, and car-oriented policies and design.
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Dallas Progress has a new post on Lower/Lowest Greenville:
I respect the efforts of any neighborhood to clean up its problem spots. There are a couple of places that seem to breed most of the problems; they should be closed. If there is a move to close all of the bars and clubs because they're all thrown into the same boat, that is something with which I will have a problem.

I have been part of such a movement before, when dealing with the Deep Ellum and Expo Park neighborhoods. In the end, we voted to keep some places open and we closed down the bad guys (Club Uropa, for example). Contrary to the opinions of some writers and blog commenters, Deep Ellum is far from dead. Multiple new clubs, bars, and restaurants have opened are more are on the way. Also, service-oriented businesses like barbershops have opened along with mainstays that never closed (Rudolph's Meat Market, Mozzarella Company). In that case, I felt it was necessary. I feel the problem in Deep Ellum was way worse than what's going on in Lowest Greenville.
I think he's right on to pinpoint and extract the carcinogenic cyst rather than cut the whole appendage off, which is reactionary at best and totalitarian or crazy at worst. But, sometimes we do crazy really well. I think he's also right in that the local businesses that have been in operation for years should aid in pointing out the trouble spots. It is in their best interest. As a frequenter of many a late night establishment myself and a lover of beers fine and ordinary both, I haven't been to Lower Greenville in nearly a year. The last two times I was there, liberally applied mace to entire crowds wafted into the bars affecting half the patrons. I know I don't have to cough out pepper spray in other areas of the city.