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Unread 03-14-2011, 09:11 PM
 
640 posts, read 590,367 times
Reputation: 568
Quote:
Originally Posted by sleepless in Bham View Post
Knoxville?, seriously?

Knoxville proper population: 183,546
Knoxville Metro population: 655,400

Birmingham proper: 212K
Birmingham metro: 1.1 million

So Birmingham is a step below Knoxville...really?

Knoxville, Baton Rouge, Mobile, Lexington, Montgomery, Jackson, Sherevport are tier 4&5 cities

Birmingham, Memphis, Louisville, OKC, Jacksonville, Richmond are on tier 3

Nashville, Charlotte, Tampa, New Orleans, Austin are on tier 3

Atlanta, Houston, Dallas are all on tier 1
Knoxville has a major university that attracts people from all over the world and has low crime. Knoxville is on a level that Bham isn't.
Jacksonville & Memphis experience substantial tourism AND have professional sports teams, OKC also has a pro team, Richmond is simply a much nicer, cleaner city that Bham, as is Louisville which has 700K people and the home of the Kentucky derby. Bham is below all those cities. Bham also has the highest crime rate in the south and was the only southern city put on the top 10 most dangerous cities by the FBI in 2010.

Bham is a step below Knoxville, I guess you could consider Bham the king of tier 4&5 cities.
When Baton Rouge gets to Atlantas level, thats when Bham will, which will be never.

Last edited by Observation; 03-14-2011 at 09:27 PM..

 
Unread 03-15-2011, 05:56 AM
 
Location: Metro Birmingham, AL
1,187 posts, read 777,781 times
Reputation: 572
Quote:
Originally Posted by Observation View Post
Knoxville has a major university that attracts people from all over the world and has low crime. Knoxville is on a level that Bham isn't.
Jacksonville & Memphis experience substantial tourism AND have professional sports teams, OKC also has a pro team, Richmond is simply a much nicer, cleaner city that Bham, as is Louisville which has 700K people and the home of the Kentucky derby. Bham is below all those cities. Bham also has the highest crime rate in the south and was the only southern city put on the top 10 most dangerous cities by the FBI in 2010.

Bham is a step below Knoxville, I guess you could consider Bham the king of tier 4&5 cities.
When Baton Rouge gets to Atlantas level, thats when Bham will, which will be never.
Most college towns have low crime rates and attract people from around the world. Ive been to Knoxville plenty of times to know that its nowhere close to being on a level with Birmingham. Most people with a working brain agree that Memphis, Birmingham, OKC, Richmond, Jacksonville, Louisville are all on the same level.

Birmingham the only southern city on the top 10 most dangerous cities list for 2010. LMAO!!!!. I guess New Orleans, Memphis, Atlanta, are not southern.

You either dont get out much, or watch too much First 48, or just a dumbass to come up with post like these.
 
Unread 03-15-2011, 06:38 AM
 
Location: Virginia Highland, GA
1,942 posts, read 1,996,476 times
Reputation: 1079
Quote:
Originally Posted by sleepless in Bham View Post
Most college towns have low crime rates and attract people from around the world. Ive been to Knoxville plenty of times to know that its nowhere close to being on a level with Birmingham. Most people with a working brain agree that Memphis, Birmingham, OKC, Richmond, Jacksonville, Louisville are all on the same level.

Birmingham the only southern city on the top 10 most dangerous cities list for 2010. LMAO!!!!. I guess New Orleans, Memphis, Atlanta, are not southern.

You either dont get out much, or watch too much First 48, or just a dumbass to come up with post like these.

Man, you know how to dish it out, but you cannot take it.
 
Unread 03-15-2011, 09:09 AM
 
2,201 posts, read 2,650,831 times
Reputation: 766
I realize I rambled on and encouraged the people that want to change the focus, so I may be largely responsible for this crappy thread, but lets get back on track. I will now ignore all irrelevant comparisons about this city and that city.
THe purpose should be "what can we take from other cities (whether in the south or not) that helps Birmingham become the city and metro that we have a vision for" We each may have a different vision (hence the city battles), but lets not get caught up in details. Lets get back to discussing Birmingham's strengths and weakness, and what our visions for it may be.
I for one, envision a further centralized city, and want to keep the outer areas as natural or agricultural as they can be. I do not want extensive surburbanization. This has already happened to some extent here, but I don't want to encourage it anymore with further road-building. I don't believe infrastructure=new, bigger roads. It can mean human capital infrastructure, better energy production and delivery and transit options. Better infrastructure for economic retainment. Schools and public safety departments. And better care for the underserved, with less NIMBYism, such as the rejection of "low class" enterprises in our neighborhoods. Services like halfway houses and drug addiction centers are good for the city as a whole. They help people get on their feet and encourage reform of the existing population, rather than only focusing on newcomers. Shops like thrift stores represent no threat to anyone.
Unfortunately, we may also need to address downsizing infrastructure in shrinking areas. If we can close of streets that consist of boarded up houses, then city and county costs can be greatly reduced.
While I may not agree with everything about Birmingham Blueprint (esp given their #1 priority seems to be more road-building right now), they have identified many strength we can build on, and many issues to address.
 
Unread 03-15-2011, 09:24 AM
 
Location: Metro Birmingham, AL
1,187 posts, read 777,781 times
Reputation: 572
Quote:
Originally Posted by brent6969 View Post
Man, you know how to dish it out, but you cannot take it.
Its not a big deal. I just dont like people making statements about a place without having any clue what he or she is talking about. I cant just start bashing a place like Little Rock, AR because I havent been there to know whats going on.

Observation apparently has not spent any time in Birmingham, or if he has he failed to get out and see whats going on. I can call anyplace a dump, but that doesnt mean I have any real facts to back it up.
 
Unread 03-15-2011, 09:42 AM
 
Location: Metro Birmingham, AL
1,187 posts, read 777,781 times
Reputation: 572
Quote:
Originally Posted by bluebeard View Post
I realize I rambled on and encouraged the people that want to change the focus, so I may be largely responsible for this crappy thread, but lets get back on track. I will now ignore all irrelevant comparisons about this city and that city.
THe purpose should be "what can we take from other cities (whether in the south or not) that helps Birmingham become the city and metro that we have a vision for" We each may have a different vision (hence the city battles), but lets not get caught up in details. Lets get back to discussing Birmingham's strengths and weakness, and what our visions for it may be.
I for one, envision a further centralized city, and want to keep the outer areas as natural or agricultural as they can be. I do not want extensive surburbanization. This has already happened to some extent here, but I don't want to encourage it anymore with further road-building. I don't believe infrastructure=new, bigger roads. It can mean human capital infrastructure, better energy production and delivery and transit options. Better infrastructure for economic retainment. Schools and public safety departments. And better care for the underserved, with less NIMBYism, such as the rejection of "low class" enterprises in our neighborhoods. Services like halfway houses and drug addiction centers are good for the city as a whole. They help people get on their feet and encourage reform of the existing population, rather than only focusing on newcomers. Shops like thrift stores represent no threat to anyone.
Unfortunately, we may also need to address downsizing infrastructure in shrinking areas. If we can close of streets that consist of boarded up houses, then city and county costs can be greatly reduced.
While I may not agree with everything about Birmingham Blueprint (esp given their #1 priority seems to be more road-building right now), they have identified many strength we can build on, and many issues to address.
We live in metro that is automobile driven, and until local and state leadership change their views on mass transit, more and more roads are going to be built. I dont see whats so bad about road building as long as there is a justfication for it. Look at US 280, would it be a traffic mess today if there were more alternative routes coming in and out of that area?. Building things like light rail, and bus routes going to the suburbs would be a major waste of money right now because there is no real demand for it.

The biggest weakness for Birmingham city is leadership. There is an article in the Birmingham News a couple of days ago talking about how the city is going to provide wi-fi services for the housing projects in the city. That in my opinion is a major waste of taxpayer dollars that could be going to a more pressing issues, like mass transit. Providing wi-fi in the housing projects doesnt help people living there better their economic condition. Providing access to getting people to and from their jobs and other services does.

It doesnt take a genius to realize that the current group of leaders in Bham city are not capable of running a dog pound much less a decent size city.
 
Unread 03-15-2011, 10:29 AM
 
2,201 posts, read 2,650,831 times
Reputation: 766
Quote:
Originally Posted by sleepless in Bham View Post
Look at US 280, would it be a traffic mess today if there were more alternative routes coming in and out of that area?.
Yes it would.
Studies show that building roads does not reduce traffic. It may seem counterintuitive, but by making it easier to drive farther you are in actual effect incentivizing people to just move farther out. It doesn't take all that long to see that traffic flow is eased for a short period of time. Look at Chelsea's growth, even with 280 as it is. Imagine if 280 didn't have the traffic. People would move even farther out, once Chelsea turns into a bunch of housing developments. AS we have mentioned, look at other sunbelt cities that have constructed freeway after freeway. Their traffic tends to be worse, not better. It takes a longer time to get to any given distance, not shorter.
Of course there is no demand for public transportation here. The road-building lobby is very strong. We keep building more roads for development. If your public trans sucks, people aren't going to use it.
People want to act as if what goes on in surrounding areas has no effect on Birmingham. This is not true. Just as what happens in Bham affects the surrounding areas.
If you want to focus on roads, repair the existing roads and bridges before we build more highways. Its ridiculous to build more when your existing roads need repair.
Just as others have pipe dreams about regional cooperation and high growth rate, my pipe dream is to encourage livable walkable communities. The trend in Bham is already there. The central part of the city is the only one gaining population. I actually believe my vision is more realistic than getting a high inlfux of outsiders moving in. And infinitely more appealing to me.
Everyone want to blame on leaders this, leaders that. But leaders represent their constituents views. Places like Portland show that progressivism can start small, rather than solely from the top. Bham is gaining momentum at the people level. THis rises up. One of the positive apects of this eras current distrust of government, is that people in the grassroots can make a difference. Relying on leaders is a cop-out. I'd rather have disabled leadership if its going to be the kind that sees road-building as plans, 1, 2, and 3 for economic development.
 
Unread 03-15-2011, 11:07 AM
 
Location: Metro Birmingham, AL
1,187 posts, read 777,781 times
Reputation: 572
Quote:
Originally Posted by bluebeard View Post
Yes it would.
Studies show that building roads does not reduce traffic. It may seem counterintuitive, but by making it easier to drive farther you are in actual effect incentivizing people to just move farther out. It doesn't take all that long to see that traffic flow is eased for a short period of time. Look at Chelsea's growth, even with 280 as it is. Imagine if 280 didn't have the traffic. People would move even farther out, once Chelsea turns into a bunch of housing developments. AS we have mentioned, look at other sunbelt cities that have constructed freeway after freeway. Their traffic tends to be worse, not better. It takes a longer time to get to any given distance, not shorter.
Of course there is no demand for public transportation here. The road-building lobby is very strong. We keep building more roads for development. If your public trans sucks, people aren't going to use it.
People want to act as if what goes on in surrounding areas has no effect on Birmingham. This is not true. Just as what happens in Bham affects the surrounding areas.
If you want to focus on roads, repair the existing roads and bridges before we build more highways. Its ridiculous to build more when your existing roads need repair.
Just as others have pipe dreams about regional cooperation and high growth rate, my pipe dream is to encourage livable walkable communities. The trend in Bham is already there. The central part of the city is the only one gaining population. I actually believe my vision is more realistic than getting a high inlfux of outsiders moving in. And infinitely more appealing to me.
Everyone want to blame on leaders this, leaders that. But leaders represent their constituents views. Places like Portland show that progressivism can start small, rather than solely from the top. Bham is gaining momentum at the people level. THis rises up. One of the positive apects of this eras current distrust of government, is that people in the grassroots can make a difference. Relying on leaders is a cop-out. I'd rather have disabled leadership if its going to be the kind that sees road-building as plans, 1, 2, and 3 for economic development.
But if the public transportation system was fantastic, most people still would not use it because it a status issue. People assume that if your riding the bus or a train that automatically means your in a lower income bracket. Another issue is who should run the transit system. Should it be a public/private venture?. Road building and improving existing roads at this point is the only logical way to get people from point A to point B right now.

I believe the key to turning Birmingham city around to improve infrastuctures to attract people moving in from outside the area. When the majority of your population was born here and is resistant to change of any kind, that doesnt bring any prosperity. It only leads to what we have going on in Bham now. Im happy to hear about growth in the central district, but what about the neighorhoods elsewhere?. What needs to be done in areas like West End, Roebuck, Crestwood, Ensley, Five Points to make them appealing to current residents and attract new ones?.

I still do not understand what is so horrible about trying to improve economic and growth rates in the metro. What can you do if Birmingham had a 35% population increase in the last decade, or if we had an annual rate of 15% or more a year?. Would you not like Birmingham if it had a city population of 500,000+, and a metro population of 2 million+?
 
Unread 03-15-2011, 11:59 AM
 
2,201 posts, read 2,650,831 times
Reputation: 766
Quote:
Originally Posted by sleepless in Bham View Post
But if the public transportation system was fantastic, most people still would not use it because it a status issue. People assume that if your riding the bus or a train that automatically means your in a lower income bracket. Another issue is who should run the transit system. Should it be a public/private venture?. Road building and improving existing roads at this point is the only logical way to get people from point A to point B right now.
This is exactly what I'm talking about. Its not only a leadership issue. Its a mindset issue. But if you had reasonable, simple, reliable transit, I do believe it would be used. Even in the Great Lakes area, the birth of the auto industry, places like Minneapolis and Buffalo (a comparable size place) have better transit systems that people use. The key is to scrap the current system. Put a little more weight towards reliability over coverage. As far as leadership, make an agreed upon plan. Then fund it. Instead of the constant straggling along.
But without that, the culture can still change. If you just make it safer to be outside, people will go. People blame the weather, but thats obviously not the whole story. Many places with horrible weather have higher activity rates. If sidewalks and roads are decent. If I could feel safe not being hit while riding my bike to the grocery store. If police would ticket traffic and parking violations in the city instead of simply committing them and practically running me over. If people would simply move closer to their jobs. This reduces traffic, and reduces the tax of gasoline use and car maintenance and ownership. Start at the ground, rather than relying on leaders to do everything for you. Its a poor city. Even if they wanted to, they can't yet.
I don't want my tax dollars for road building. Its as simple as that. Of course, in a democracy, I have to accept that everyone else does. Your vision, actually IS the mainstream. That is the current thinking.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sleepless in Bham View Post
I believe the key to turning Birmingham city around to improve infrastuctures to attract people moving in from outside the area. When the majority of your population was born here and is resistant to change of any kind, that doesnt bring any prosperity. It only leads to what we have going on in Bham now. Im happy to hear about growth in the central district, but what about the neighorhoods elsewhere?. What needs to be done in areas like West End, Roebuck, Crestwood, Ensley, Five Points to make them appealing to current residents and attract new ones?.
But again, infrastructure does not simply equal roads. That's a very narrow view. And, I am a relative newcomer trying to give a different vision. Road building and uncontrolled growth is actually the OLD mentality, not new. That is not change. That is chasing the same path we already have been down. It obviously doesn't seem to work so well.
Building raods will not solve places like Roebuck. when driving down Roebuck Parkway, I just wish all those empty buildings would be torn down and returned to forest.
Build on successes, not failures. The central district is growing. Maintain this momentum. THis is turning into a livable, self-sustaining community. There is no reason for people to move to the outer areas yet. Ballparks and domes will not change that, no matter where they are built. Attracting distribution warehouses and manufacturing plants, or some other business district visions might help. Building new roads just helps them get out of town faster. Like I said, there are shrinking cities which can be models for these areas. The inhabitants can be helped.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sleepless in Bham View Post
I still do not understand what is so horrible about trying to improve economic and growth rates in the metro. What can you do if Birmingham had a 35% population increase in the last decade, or if we had an annual rate of 15% or more a year?. Would you not like Birmingham if it had a city population of 500,000+, and a metro population of 2 million+?
These are numbers. They do not mean anything. If this means that Birmingham is the same size, but is simply spread out into ever growing housing developments: no I would not like that. I'd be willing to bet many of the current residents of these suburban communities also wouldn't like them to be ever expanding as well. I am not at all anti-growth. but growth for its own sake does not help, and is not sustainable in the long-run. Growth is a trend that can be harnessed. But living in a place that has 1 million vs 2 million, well, that doesn't mean much by itself, does it? By that measure, Detroit is still a more successful city than us. It's still much larger. Growth is not a cure-all by itself.

Last edited by bluebeard; 03-15-2011 at 12:08 PM..
 
Unread 03-15-2011, 12:19 PM
 
640 posts, read 590,367 times
Reputation: 568
Quote:
Originally Posted by sleepless in Bham View Post
Most college towns have low crime rates and attract people from around the world. Ive been to Knoxville plenty of times to know that its nowhere close to being on a level with Birmingham. Most people with a working brain agree that Memphis, Birmingham, OKC, Richmond, Jacksonville, Louisville are all on the same level.

Birmingham the only southern city on the top 10 most dangerous cities list for 2010. LMAO!!!!. I guess New Orleans, Memphis, Atlanta, are not southern.

You either dont get out much, or watch too much First 48, or just a dumbass to come up with post like these.
Your right, Knoxville does have a low crime rate and attract people from all over the world, and Birmingham has an insane crime rate and no one who isn't from Alabama ever wants to be caught dead there (no pun intended).

As for Birmingham being the only southern city in the top 10, I didn't make this up.
Most Dangerous Cities in America (Photos)-- WalletPop
FACT: Birmingham is more dangerous than NO, Memphis, and ATL.

You putting all those cities on Bhams level is hilarious. Do you really think Birmingham, a city with an insane crime rate and 230K people is on the same level as Jacksonville? A city of 950K on the beach with low crime and professional sports teams?

Thats hilarious!
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