Same as It Ever Was — Third Ward Version (Updated with Video)
With the campaign season underway in the third ward (Recorder story here) , I see the very real possibility that no meaningful policy changes will occur in terms of demand side economics. Or more to the point: why should I invest dollars and resources in Amsterdam ?
Over the past five years, the demand side argument for living in the third ward has diminished and continues to diminish with shuttering an elementary school and the museum. Bit by bit, significant public spaces fall to neglect with attendant graffiti and vandalism or fall to the worst type of use as commercial spaces embedded in residential neighborhoods. Meanwhile the economics of property values or the significance of a rich architectural legacy remain unaddressed.
I do not want to rehash old arguments — they are posted elsewhere on the blog– of why the above actions undermine any economic rebound in real estate or business growth to this ward and more broadly across the city.
Yet I’m afraid that we will get more of the same with the new candidates as we have with our current and former incumbents. I think this is self-evident as you will not find any public statement against the Bacon closure nor will you find a public statement opposing the closure and sale of the museum from our incumbent or former representative. Of the candidates, Ms. DeRossi supported the Bacon closure in her initial run for the board of education. While her record on the museum showed some early support, her recent comments on the museum proposition could hardly be characterized as supportive.
With Mr. Going, I find that we share radically different visions of the future of our city and underlying economic policies given his support for the C&D landfill and opposition to Chalmers. I could not disagree more as what is best and what is worst for our city.
I’m sure the race will be interesting– they always are– so let’s see how this plays out. But I expect it will be more of the same.
Update: By reader request (h/t/ Darren) and as a TH/David Byrne fan myself albeit sans oversized suit: