Saturday, April 02, 2005


Goodbye, We'll Miss You!

The only pope I've known in my life. In a day an age when the term 'you're a saint' is thrown around, Pope John Paul II is truly a saint. He'll be missed in this world.

Friday, April 01, 2005


Bring 'em Home

This is a great idea. I am not usually one to support tax credits, refunds, deductions (I'd much rather just see the government lower taxes instead of trying to persuade me to live my life a certain way, but I digress). The idea to offer tax credits to new homeowners is a great idea. It's not much ($500 a year), but for people thinking about buying a new house, if that encourages them to stay in Cincinnati rather than moving out of the city to the 'burbs and exurbs, then it's great. Cincinnati has a 39% homeownership rate (and while I don't have the time to research the exact rates in other comparable cities, I can tell you this is dramatically lower than most).

I am 100% in support of the idea that a signficant number of the problems we see in our communities is a result of low ownership. An ownership city has built in desire to make things better. They are there for the long haul, if crime is happening on their doorsteps, they are motivated to make it stop, because they can't just pack up and move across town to another apartment.

Thursday, March 31, 2005


Farmer's Market in NKY

I have one question... why? I know, I know... I am the guy who says that it shooldn't be a competition between NKY and Cincinnati, and what is good for NKY is not bad for Cincinnati. However, when we have one of the most treasured and longest running outdoor markets in Findlay Market in Over-the-Rhine, what is the point of creating someting new in NKY. It would only pull away patrons from Findlay, and could eventually cause the demise of one of the areas charished ammenities. So, no.... Development in KY is not always a bad thing for Cincy, but if Covington proposed building a Major League Baseball stadium on the riverfront, I'd say that was unnecessary. It's about smart development, and trying to create a new farmer's market less than 2 miles from one of the areas treasures is not smart development.


Readin', Rightin' and Rithmatic

Looks like the CPS continues it's ascent. Pretty impressive honestly, in 1999 only 47 percent of students in the cincy public school system graduated. Five years later it's 72.1%. Now I will admit, I don't follow this closely enough to know whether this number is being measured the same way as it was 5 years ago, and this is an honest increase in graduation numbers, or if things have changed. But giving it the benefit of the doubt, that we're talking apples to apples, that is an impressive improvement. Thought it does still mean that more than 1 of every 4 students does not graduate, it's a lot better than 1 out of every 2.

Wednesday, March 30, 2005


Painted Ladies to Get New Neighbor

Looks like the development on the Northwest and Southeast corners of Delta and Columbia Parkway is finally set to move forward. I think it'll be good for that area, though I am not sure how much of a 'neighborhood' it can become. There are a large number of commuters that move through that area each day, and I am not sure you will convice them that slowing and stopping in the neighborhood is something they'll be happy about. But the new sidewalks, and some local services could help the East End Neighborhood known for it's painted ladies. It will also continue the trend of development in the East End (Columbia Pkway and Eastern Ave).


New Local Media Outlet - Independent Eye

The Independent Eye has launched their new website after their weekend opening party at Alchemize. The online paper (soon to be a print paper as well) will focus on the city, media, arts, and music. It has some interesting features including EyeGuide (an interactive guide to the city that readers can contribute to), and EyeBlog which is a feed of local blogs (of which The Nati is listed as a possible feed, and I appreciate that!).

I also find it quite interesting that they've got an article thanking those that made the Independent Eye launch party at Alchemize possible. In this article they thank Nick Spencer (for hosting them at Nick's club Alchemize), and then immediately thank Jason Haap (aka the Dean of Cincinnati). Why is this funny? The Dean was told to F* Off by Nick and removed from Alchemize at the very launch party mentioned above. I just find that comical, that the Dean was kicked out of the party that Independent Eye thanked him for helping make possible :) Oh, Irony!

Monday, March 28, 2005


Mapping Out Crime

Hoping to capitalize on the concept that 'information is king', a group of very connected individuals is building out the Neighborhood Support Center in Cincinnati. Sitting in the heart Over-the-Rhine (one of the most troubled, but immensely promising neighborhoods), the center will collect and report on crime data for all of Hamilton County's communities. The idea behind it is if you collect data and trends you can build community support (backed by concrete information) to go the city and police to get action. When communities are involved and residents have an understanding of the impact on crime, then you can target those areas and get results.

There is an impressive group of people behind this already. Lucy Logan, who started Who Killed Our Kids in 2002, and Gale Smith (a dear friend of mine) who is a local philonthropist, developer, visionary. Mike Allen (Yes, that Mike Allen) has picked up the NSC as his first consulting client. Say what you will about Mr. Allen, I certainly don't condone his actions in office, but he has the experience that will be helpful in making real changes in crime.

Visit the NSC online to see how you can help by getting involved or donating to the cause. I plan on meeting with those involved with the NSC this week, and will report back more later this week.

Sunday, March 27, 2005


Covington, Newport, Cincinnati - An Urban Neighborhood

Great article about downtown living. It focuses a little on the new Ascent at Roebling building in Covington that I wrote about last week. But it also talks about something I've always been a big suporter of.... Downtown living in Cincinnati doesn't end at the river. The downtown community is Downtown Cincinnati, Newport and Covington.

Christine Schoonover a downtown real estate agent (now working for Huff), who has been promoting urban living for years, says:

"It's exciting to see things on the riverbank in Northern Kentucky because I consider this a regional approach to living downtown. I'm not fighting with Kentucky and I don't want Kentucky to fight with us. People can walk across a bridge and enjoy the same things,"

The new building in Covington is going to be a great confidence builder for urban living, and along with the 4th St project, the American Building and others will hopefully spur further interest to move downtown. It's a big news project like The Ascent (with the same architect that designed the new World Trade Center in NY) that will grab the attention of Young Professionals and empty nesters (baby boomers) that downtown living is targeted to. If baby boomers in big numbers decide that they no longer need the white picket fence McMasion in the 'burbs because their kids are gone and they don't have to worry about schools, there could be a huge movement to urban living that would be great for cities...

For now, I'm just happy about the new developments and interest in urban living, if nothing else it bumps my property value.

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