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No, Cincinnati still has a very intact urban environment, especially compared to many similar cities. Just look at downtown Columbus for instance, which is a mess of surface parking lots, or Indianapolis with few actual urban neighborhoods, or Louisville with its riverfront highway. The problem here is an embarrassment of riches, whether it's urbanism, neighborhoods, historic architecture, geography, geology, institutions, etc. There's so much good stuff, that nobody cares about it because it's nearly ubiquitous. Crappy un-urban projects like the casino or the new SCPA or the cheap architecture of The Banks can fly here because there's so much apathy about the resources we have, as if there's so much good stuff that we don't need to worry. Many cities don't really get serious about things like historic preservation, walkable urbanism, or their other assets until they're nearly gone. It's also a case of "different is good", so we end up with cheap expressions of starchitecture, casinos with front lawns, and schools that turn their ass end towards the neighborhood's nicest park, just because they're breaking the mould. Read more: http://www.urbanohio.com/forum2/index.php/topic,2568.900.html#ixzz1ldVM20hz
wow! I hope they open up the central pkwy side like that too
Construction labor is as expensive in cincinnati as in boston and san fran?
What the City needs to do, is retool underutilized land in outer neighborhoods to create suburban style campuses.
Quote from: CincyGuy45202 on March 24, 2012, 10:16:15 AMWhat the City needs to do, is retool underutilized land in outer neighborhoods to create suburban style campuses. Absolutely not. These suburban style campuses (whether offices, industrial parks, strip shopping, or even housing developments) do not even come close to repaying through taxes the investment to build and maintain the infrastructure that they require. As an example, a typical suburban housing subdivision would need to have its property taxes increased by anything from 2x-4x just to cover the ongoing maintenance of its own roads, never mind the sewers, water lines, schools, police, fire department, libraries, and other services those taxes go to as well. Cincinnati's outer neighborhoods are on shaky ground from a return-on-investment point of view as it is, and encouraging more low-density development which requires widened roads, more traffic signals, extra sewer capacity, and other things is only going to dig the city into a deeper hole than it's already in. It's simply not worth it to keep such jobs in the city if those are the conditions that they come with. The city income tax makes the situation a little less lopsided, but it's still a very dangerous direction to go. The way such suburban development has managed to work OK in the past 60 years or so is because when those long-term maintenance liabilities come due, they're paid for by the taxes from new development that hasn't aged enough to need that maintenance yet. The only way it works without significantly increasing taxes is to have more and more growth. Any city or suburb that's already "built out" can't keep growing like that, so when the maintenance liabilities start piling up they get in trouble. Older suburbs are getting hit hardest because they have no ability at all to densify and improve the utilization of their existing infrastructure. The city itself is in a better position to densify and redevelop a number of areas, but the trend has to be increasing density and doing so with as much existing infrastructure as possible. These suburban style projects are burdening the city with road and sewer expansion projects that the city can not only not afford to build in the first place, but has no hope of maintaining in the future. So that's definitely not the answer to the problem. Washington Park on the other hand, as expensive as it is, is the type of project that projects its value into the surrounding neighborhood. As values go up around it, that increases the tax base, and helps pay off the cost of the project. That's called value capture. The streetcar project is the same kind of thing. Widening arterial roads, adding turn lanes, traffic signals, expanding sewers to handle excess runoff, and other such work that goes into these suburban projects costs a lot of money, but they don't improve nearby property values in any reasonable proportion to what they cost, and immediately nearby many of them even reduce values. We need to stop such insanity.
14th is wide enough (3 lanes) to make two way between Race and Elm like it is between Elm and Central Parkway. East of Race though, no way. Even so, one way streets aren't really a bad thing if they're narrow, especially if there's dedicated parking lanes. It's when you get to 3 or more travel lanes that it starts to become a problem.