Extreme makeover, city edition

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by 63dot, Jan 11, 2009.

?

who needs it?

  1. The South Bronx

    4 vote(s)
    16.7%
  2. Southside of Chicago

    4 vote(s)
    16.7%
  3. The Mission District, San Francisco

    2 vote(s)
    8.3%
  4. Washington Heights, NYC

    1 vote(s)
    4.2%
  5. Oakland/Richmond, CA

    2 vote(s)
    8.3%
  6. Boston, the whole freakin' city

    4 vote(s)
    16.7%
  7. Philly, ditto

    3 vote(s)
    12.5%
  8. Detroit, ditto

    12 vote(s)
    50.0%
  9. most of D.C.

    3 vote(s)
    12.5%
  10. Norfolk, VA (the city where the term urban blight was invented)

    2 vote(s)
    8.3%
  1. 63dot macrumors 603

    63dot

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    norcal
    #1
    So we have extreme makeover for houses, people, the show the biggest loser, and the swan. How about a "big" show showing urban renewal over a whole season targeting well known eyesores in the USA. Who would make the cut?
     
  2. XnavxeMiyyep macrumors 65816

    XnavxeMiyyep

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    Location:
    Washington
    #2
    Boston definitely does NOT need any more makeovers! We've had enough of that! I like that the roads have been relatively consistent for the past couple of years. ;)
     
  3. 63dot thread starter macrumors 603

    63dot

    Joined:
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    #3
    I saw some of the amazing stuff that was done in Boston on the History Channel. Lifting an entire highway and canal? It must have been the most expensive project in that city's history.

    My neighbor from Boston, old days, went back to visit and thought it was a dump compared to the Boston of the glory days 30s-50s but that's comparing two different time periods. My best friend who lived there from the 50s-70s, moved back briefly and said the same thing. They both challenged anybody from NYC as to how bad or dirty a city can get. When I complain about certain areas in LA or SF, and I think my views are valid, my Boston friends bust up and said I have never seen real gangs, crime, or urban decay. One commented that South Central LA looked like paradise compared to Boston. Similar comments have been made to me by New Yorkers, but oddly enough, they conceded that even NYC does not have the decay of certain sections of Boston.

    All this anti-Boston talk has made me very curious about the city from the former Boston residents I meet here and there. I have also met some former SF or LA people who have told me that there is no "urban decay" or inner city anywhere on the west coast, and comparatively little crime, too compared to NYC, Boston, Philly, etc. I still don't suggest taking a midnight stroll through downtown Oakland or the Mission District in SF ;)

    ...that being said Conde Nast magazine called SF the most beautiful city in the world, followed by Paris and some others. I can agree that overall, SF is romantic and gorgeous, but even that city needs help in certain non-tourist areas. The city saw it's short term homicide rate hit an all time high, much of it in the Mission/Hunter's Point, and some speculate that it the reason the Police Chief left.
     
  4. CalBoy macrumors 604

    CalBoy

    Joined:
    May 21, 2007
    #4
    I voted for the Mission only because I'm a local. :p

    It has seriously been improved in recent years though. Newsom and company have been very aggressive with gentrification. Given a few more years, and the Mission will cease to be The Mission.
     
  5. 63dot thread starter macrumors 603

    63dot

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    #5
    I liked the Mission when it was bad. Interesting decor and it was kind of like being in a different country. There is no area in SF with the same character as the Mission district. I hope Newsom can clean it up, yet keep it affordable for the large Hispanic population there. I don't want to see it become just a haven for rich yuppies. It would be akin to tearing down Chinatown and putting up condos there. The Mission is an integral part of San Francisco's multi-cultural makeup and part of what makes such a small city, in square miles, such a fun melting pot. Oakland and San Jose don't have the same vibe as SF. As to stopping the Ns and Ss over drug turf, I say decriminalize drugs. As long as drugs are illegal, those two scourges of the Mission will continue their violent rampage for the Heroin and Meth trades, and it would decrease crime in other urban centers.
     
  6. yg17 macrumors G5

    yg17

    Joined:
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    Location:
    St. Louis, MO
    #6
    St. Louis could use a huge makeover. The city proper, with a few exceptions such as the Central West End and Midtown, is a complete craphole.
     
  7. XnavxeMiyyep macrumors 65816

    XnavxeMiyyep

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2003
    Location:
    Washington
    #7
    Well, admittedly, some parts of Boston could use a makeover, but most of it is rather nice. Also, if I recall correctly (going to school in Worcester, which is rather far from Boston), some of the not-so-nice parts of Boston are being improved.
     
  8. 63dot thread starter macrumors 603

    63dot

    Joined:
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    norcal
    #8
    That's a good thing. Urban renewers really cleaned up 42nd street in NYC when many thought it was a foolhardy project. The SOMA in San Francisco went through a major facelift.

    There are other cities not as big or as well known as urban junkyards above that need work: Gary, Indiana/Buffalo NY/St. Louis/Atlanta/Kansas City/Baltimore, etc. TV crime/law shows focus on NYC, Chicago, Boston, Philly, LA, and SF as they are Hollywood's favorite targets. I just dont' think Baltimore PD Blue or CSI Buffalo would really fly as shows. ;)
     
  9. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    Colly-fornia
    #9
    The USGBC will soon have LEED ratings available for neighborhood development / improvements similar to their ratings for buildings that are in use now.
     
  10. ucfgrad93 macrumors P6

    ucfgrad93

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    Aug 17, 2007
    Location:
    Colorado
  11. blackfox macrumors 65816

    blackfox

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    Location:
    PDX
    #11
    Baltimore isn't a poll option?

    Perhaps it's too far gone?...
     
  12. SactoGuy18 macrumors 68020

    SactoGuy18

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    Location:
    Sacramento, CA USA
    #12
    Why the Mission District of San Francisco? I've walked around that district and it's got a charm and a lot of great Mexican restaurants in that area. If there is any areas in San Francisco that needs help it's the Hunter's Point area and the "Tenderloin."
     
  13. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #13
    Detroit would be a great story for 2009, since a makeover of Detroit also addresses the question indirectly of what the future looks like for the native automotive industry....

    The South Side of Chicago doesn't need an extreme makeover... it isn't really an eyesore. The problem is more complicated than that. I think the first step in revitalizing the South Side is to make a larger hub for affluent / middle-class Black people in the greater Hyde Park area (Hyde Park is already fairly pretty, although one or two things should be bulldozed :p ), and start building Black-owned small businesses that cater to African Americans to build up more of an internal economy for the South Side.
     
  14. hulugu macrumors 68000

    hulugu

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2003
    Location:
    the faraway towns
    #14
    You mean Delta city?

    To renovate Detroit you first need a serious cybernetic program from a large multinational company, say like OCP or Haliburton.
     
  15. Counterfit macrumors G3

    Counterfit

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    #15
    One of, if the the, most expensive public works projects in the country. Total cost including interest will be around $22,000,000,000. It won't be paid off for another 29 years. I'm glad to see it finally completed a few years ago though, as the project had been ongoing for most of the time I can remember. :eek:
    I'll just have to stay off the Mass Pike for another 30 years or so.
     
  16. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    #16
    And watch out for falling concrete panels...
     
  17. Counterfit macrumors G3

    Counterfit

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    #17
    Yeah, I'll just take the Blue Line to Logan from now on. :eek:
     
  18. Thomas Veil macrumors 68020

    Thomas Veil

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    Feb 14, 2004
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    OBJECTIVE reality
    #18
    Dudes, Cleveland could use a major facelift, but it's not on the list.
     
  19. SactoGuy18 macrumors 68020

    SactoGuy18

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2006
    Location:
    Sacramento, CA USA
    #19
    Paging one Earvin "Magic" Johnson. You may not like him as a basketball player but he's wonderful as a businessman pushing for more African-American owned businesses. He could work with the authorities in the South Side and turn the area around Hyde Park into a "destination" for everyone in Chicago and then some. :)
     
  20. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2004
    Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
    #20
    Hyde Park is already a "destination" for many people in Chicago. When you stay mostly on the north side and then go down to Hyde park for the first time, you realize just how massive this city really is. There is so much potential on the south side, it's ridiculous. And Chinatown, Bronzeville, Pilsen and Bridgeport are fabulous, too. A lot of the south side has quite a bit to offer, it just needs to be rediscovered.
     
  21. fotografica macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2006
    Location:
    Boston
    #21
    Don't forget the leaking tunnels..
    http://www.boston.com/news/local/articles/2004/11/10/big_dig_found_riddled_with_leaks/
    http://www.boston.com/news/local/articles/2007/07/01/leakage_in_big_dig_tunnel_rises/

    Must be real comforting seeing this while in your car in a tunnel going under the harbor
     

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  22. 63dot thread starter macrumors 603

    63dot

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2006
    Location:
    norcal
    #22
    Here in the Bay Area, where there is a rather large teaching community, professional community, and overall "refugee population" of alums/escapees who went to school in or near Boston, in almost every case I never hear anything good about the city they left behind. It's almost a badge of honor that they think they can claim that their former city is the baddest, stinkiest, dirtiest of them all, and they always have to throw in how NY is not as run down as their urban jungle. :)

    Of course, throughout my life and hearing about how Bostonians (and New Yorkers, to be fair) never want to leave SF and go back east, one thing I never heard was about these leaks.

    Well, next time I meet another Bostonian who complains about the extreme crime or urban decay they left behind, I can share this story. If that tunnel goes, then Boston has far worse things to worry about than urban decay and street gangs. My neighbor was a Westie, or something like that and he told me that the water around Boston was the most polluted in the world.

    The topic of urban decay and crime always crops up in mixed company when one of us native Californians starts talking about the crime in South Central LA or Oakland to another Californian, and within a few seconds, some NY, Boston, or Philly person butts in and says how "good" we have it here and how there is no crime or urban decay in the Bay Area or Los Angeles.
     
  23. Counterfit macrumors G3

    Counterfit

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    #23
  24. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #24
    Yeah, very true. Those four communities in particular provide great anchors for the South Side. I think part of the problem is that, although they are relatively close together (Chinatown and Pilsen are only a couple of miles from Hyde Park, and the Sox stadium is literally the next train station up), development hasn't gone quite to the part where they run right up to each other in the way that you can just start in one North Side neighborhood and walk right through the next two. Part of that is due to the relatively industrial nature of the area around Pilsen and Bronzeville, too, though....

    But the surrounding neighborhoods of Hyde Park could still be a much larger destination community with a black majority, as the well developed part of the area is still very small considering how many black people live in town.
     

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