25 Years and Counting...
These are not "trolleys" they are enclosed cars that would run along with the Metro service, with fewer stops and quicker travel, and help to eliminate the parking problems inherent for so long in a city lacking mass transit of any kind outside of the small time Metro service.
I was impressed with the way Findlay Market has been cleaned up and the adjacent, free parking lot there now. It's a really neat area, reminded me of a mini Pike's Place Market in Seattle without the dock and the bay.
Also that side of OTR is largely vacant and safe, with a couple of planned breweries/distributorships/distilleries and bars. What a great thing for the breweries to return there again. It won't happen overnight but I commend the people brave enough to get it started.
People on the radio making blanket statements without much, if any, knowledge of the area, shouldn't provide opinions on things they know nothing about. They aren't helping anyone.
I can say the Sheriff patrol sweeps this same group championed (which the lame City Council rejected over $400k this past year I believe) really helped to clean up the area, to the point it's now able to move forward on the west and east sides. You have to actually go down there to see what they're talking about. The potential is really exciting and it should be supported.
Let the chickens and people afraid to take back the city's most distinct and cultured neighborhood stay in the burbs and pay $4 a gallon for gas and $100 a month for parking - who needs 'em. Their way hasn't worked and never will.
True story: friends of mine moved to Cincinnati after an adulthood away. Accustomed to cities, they moved downtown, and one weekend morning decided to visit Findlay market since they'd heard it was the downtown thing to do. She was living in the old Shilito's building so they thought they could walk there easily.
They start on their trek north, directly through OTR, and pretty quickly become lost. A drug dealer approaches them. These kids are mid-20s, both strawberry blond, extremely round-faced and innocent-looking. The dealer asks them what they're looking for and goes through his list of options. They're a bit taken aback and say, no, we're just trying to get to the market.
The dealer is appalled. He asks them what the hell they're doing walking through this neighborhood, and proceeds to grab them by the arm and escort them down to the market so that no one else gives them any trouble.
I have no desire to romanticize a neighborhood with serious troubles, and sure, on another day, these kids might have gotten in some serious trouble. But there's a part of me that can't help but take note of -- and love -- a city where even the drug dealers are willing to help the tourists. It's not as terrifying out there as we think.
There is no such thing as a pitching prospect.
My daughter recently wrote a blog piece about the city's subway which never came to fruition. As she does not drive and gets around by public transportation, it saddened her that we missed an opportunity way back when to have made a big difference on the city.
The entire blog entry is at http://thefinestmuffins.blogspot.com...iday-fail.html along with her quick sketch of the tour (very barebones sketch).The tour itself was amazing and I highly recommend it to others. But as much as I was fascinated by the history, I was mostly saddened by how different my city would be, how different my childhood would have been, how different my current life would be if this subway plan had succeeded rather than failed. When they flashed up the proposed subway route during the pre-tour slideshow, I spotted the "Winton Place" marker on the map and cried a little inside. What if I'd been able to hop a subway 6 blocks from my house to go downtown to the library or a Reds game? Or over to my favorite bookstore in Oakley? By now the subway would have been expanded, I'm sure. Where could I get today from Clifton? I wonder if Ohio would be losing so many young people if we had a subway in Cincinnati today?
I think the trolley system has a possible upside, but it should be seen as an overall panacea for a desperately needed mass transist system that servces the entire tri-state region (one of the roadblocks to some of the funding, IMO).
And I concur with those of you about OTR - there's some good going on down there despite it's many clear problems.
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I have to agree with the remarks about Findlay Market. I went there for the first time not too long ago and came away incredibly impressed. It's probably the most eclectic and diverse place in Cincinnati. I've never been to Pike Place Market in Seattle, but Findlay Market is so different from anything else in Cincinnati, it almost feels like you're on vacation. Not to mention the selection of food and other shops beats any supermarket or big boxer. I've got my eye on the Banks the next few years when it's time to move again and hopefully will be making many more Findlay Market trips via the streetcar...
"In our sundown perambulations of late, through the outer parts of Brooklyn, we have observed several parties of youngsters playing 'base', a certain game of ball. Let us go forth awhile, and get better air in our lungs. Let us leave our close rooms, the game of ball is glorious"
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