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Old 01-23-2013, 04:37 PM
 
1,295 posts, read 1,525,680 times
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The biggest knocks on Cincinnati are just its unfortunate geographic location. It's seen as the epitome of "flyover country" to those who couldn't care less about informing their opinions. The media is concentrated on the coasts and has no love for this region.

The conservative mentality is mostly confined to the suburbs nowadays (conservative flight has been huge and is almost complete), but it gives the city and the suburbs a very, very contentious relationship. That's a problem, but it is one that the city has done a pretty good job lately of mitigating. The battle scars of this fight are primarily in the outer-ring neighborhoods, while the core of the city is resurgent. This is not a unique pattern, but it might be more pronounced in Cincinnati. However, given the city's uniqueness and rich culture and history, it is poised as well as any city in the country to make these trends work for it. If the trend of a resurgent urban core continues as trends would indicate, Cincinnati should rise like cream to the top because it has such strong and unique amenities. The city is at a huge competitive advantage in this regard, and sits like a gem waiting to be noticed by the people who aren't privy to what's obvious to anyone bothering to look. You seem to be someone who has bothered to look, so you are noticing this fact.

The economy is very diverse, so I wouldn't say an over-reliance on manufacturing is an issue. The city was not void of manufacturing by any means, but its identity has never been rust-belt. It just gets lumped in there for geographical reasons, rather independently from historic realities. Still, like most American cities, it struggles to find an economic place for a large, uneducated underclass.

You might wonder why Cincinnati has lost so much population, while some peers like Columbus in Indianapolis have continued to grow in recent decades. Most of that has to do with annexation practices in those other cities. Being state capitals also doesn't hurt them.
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Old 01-23-2013, 04:46 PM
 
Location: Beavercreek, OH
2,194 posts, read 3,028,208 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by progmac View Post
OTR is, even to natives, a different place than it was even 18 months ago, nevermind 10 years ago. Downtown seems to be going strong. The banks was a hole in the ground for 10 years and then filled up to 100% occupancy seemingly overnight.

Some city neighborhoods are just insanely successful - hyde park area and mt adams come to mind. Others are way different than they were 10 years ago - northside and oakley come to mind.
Hi progmac--

I haven't even set foot or driven around in OTR since about the beginning of 2009, almost four years - and in any case I left the Cincinnati area altogether about 18 months ago. At some point, I'll have to take a drive around again and see for myself - if even one tenth of what the posters here praise about OTR has come true, then I'll be amazed and actually believe that there is some redevelopment, not just the re-re-re attempts of past years.

Of course, as you mention in your post, this is probably being done at the expense of many outlying neighborhoods in Cincinnati (and probably is responsible for the 10+% population loss since the last Census).
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Old 01-23-2013, 04:47 PM
 
1,295 posts, read 1,525,680 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohiogirl81 View Post
Agreed. Each of the city's neighborhoods is as important as the next, although we all know that is a fantasy not shared by TPTB. It would be nice to see the city -- and the nut-twisters who run it -- ponying up to make that fantasy a reality.
There are a lot of things at work here. Spreading resources around evenly to all neighborhoods would not be an effective strategy. Outer-ring neighborhoods are not as attractive to people looking for places to live, not due to lack of investment, but due to larger demographic trends and cultural preferences. For one, it is hard for a city to be competitive with a built environment that is similar to cheaper offerings outside the city.

The targeted investment you are seeing is a smart response to cultural and demographics trends which multiply the strength and appeal of parts of the city that have the potential to appeal to the greatest number of people looking for places to live. The city is taking the strategy of rebuilding roughly in the same pattern that the city was built originally: from the river out. Maybe you predict this to be a failed investment strategy in the long term, but I don't really see you making that argument. What I think I see is you making an emotional argument about the decline of places you once thought of as nice, and blaming current city government for this result. As if throwing good money at bad would magically change real estate trends bigger than the Cincinnati metro.
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Old 01-23-2013, 04:53 PM
 
Location: Cincinnati
4,007 posts, read 4,844,393 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hensleya1 View Post
Hi progmac--

I haven't even set foot or driven around in OTR since about the beginning of 2009, almost four years - and in any case I left the Cincinnati area altogether about 18 months ago. At some point, I'll have to take a drive around again and see for myself - if even one tenth of what the posters here praise about OTR has come true, then I'll be amazed and actually believe that there is some redevelopment, not just the re-re-re attempts of past years.
Don't bother. OTR is doing fine w/o you "driving around" to see if it's developments are really true.

If you really want to experience OTR then park somewhere and GET OUT OF THE CAR and take in all the neighborhood has to offer. If you actually condescend to doing so, you MIGHT actually have fun.


Quote:
Originally Posted by hensleya1 View Post
Of course, as you mention in your post, this is probably being done at the expense of many outlying neighborhoods in Cincinnati (and probably is responsible for the 10+% population loss since the last Census).
This is absolutely the most unfounded speculation I have read from you yet Hen. I'll leave the burden of proof on you to show the local population trends, and how OTR has leached from the rest of the city. This assumption is so utterly uninformed I'll not dignify it with further response.

How could a neighborhood adding population cause a population decrease city wide because people move from one neighborhood to the next WITHIN the SAME CITY!
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Old 01-23-2013, 06:03 PM
 
70 posts, read 116,498 times
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thanks for the responses guys!

I was wondering if you guys had any perspective on why cincinnati population metro population growth appears to lag behind Columbus, indianapolis and a bunch of other cities in the 2 million range other than your classic rust belt cities.

Comments were made as to the fact that columbus and indianpolis are able to annex surrounding area, but I believe that should only pertain to the city proper rather than the metro.

do you think these statistics capture cincinnati's competitiveness with similar cities (List of Metropolitan Statistical Areas - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia). it sounds like the consensus is that the stats may either be lagging from the reality or just inaccurate.

Maybe it's similar to Pittsburgh where there just now appears to be healthy buzz around the city that may not have been present before. although this could be my imagination.

Last edited by det2011sb; 01-23-2013 at 06:24 PM..
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Old 01-23-2013, 06:29 PM
 
Location: Mason, OH
9,259 posts, read 13,416,907 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by det2011sb View Post
thanks for the responses guys!

I was wondering if you guys had any perspective on why cincinnati population metro population growth appears to lag behind Columbus, indianapolis and a bunch of other cities in the 2 million range other than your classic rust belt cities.

do you think these statistics capture cincinnati's competitiveness with similar cities (List of Metropolitan Statistical Areas - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia). it sounds like the consensus is that it does not.

Maybe it's similar to Pittsburgh where there just now appears to be healthy buzz around the city that may not have been present before. although this could be my imagination.
First of all I see nothing in these statistics indicating Cincinnati is lagging behind. Second of all, single year statistics can be quite misleading. Cincinnati's long term trends have been very good, particularly in a period of economic distress. The vibrancy of the downtown core has definitely increased, both residential and commercial. Cincinnati is doing just fine thank you.
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Old 01-23-2013, 06:49 PM
 
1,295 posts, read 1,525,680 times
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My prediction is that a tipping point is looming where people will begin to realize the cost of living in the big (expensive) coastal cities is not made up for in the amenities provided. People will realize they've been overlooking legitimate options which they'd long dismissed out-of-hand for no reason other than everyone they know having done the same. The Midwest has a lot of gems to be discovered, and Cincinnati in particular will charm the pants off those wandering eyes.

As for Pittsburgh, I think it has two big things elevating it: 1) strong university presence (What other "struggling" medium-sized city has a CMU equivalent?) 2) Richard Florida called it home for a number of years. Florida is the arbiter of all things pop-urban. I mentioned that one of Cincinnati's biggest struggles is (geography and) media related, and he single-handed takes a huge chunk out of the media narrative problem for Pittsburgh.
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Old 01-23-2013, 08:23 PM
 
Location: Chicago, IL
477 posts, read 531,643 times
Reputation: 275
Quote:
Maybe it's similar to Pittsburgh where there just now appears to be healthy buzz around the city that may not have been present before. although this could be my imagination.
Mostly Richard Florida related hype. The biggest thing holding Cincy back btw, is the local culture, it tends towards not being urban and is slow to pick up on new ideas.

You mentioned how in Chicago you liked the energy of talented people while that is true to a small extent in Cincy, more often than not the nail that sticks up gets knocked down (though that is changing for the better lately). The conservatism runs deeper than just politically, its even this weird provincialism that basically says "This is the way Cincinnati does it, and there is no other way" and that's said with pride even if it makes no sense.

Things are finally changing, but its like a weird shock, I wouldn't be on these boards if I wasn't impressed with the progress being made down there, though its still got a ways to go.

You are right about the city having above average assets, and completely squandering a lot of them, check out this article for a similar view:

The Urbanophile Blog Archive Cincinnati: A Midwest Conundrum

and of course there is this "progressive" who notes that this is a city that change doesn't work in (I disagree with him, but I think it speaks for the attitude of the local culture)

n+1: Cincinnati
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Old 01-23-2013, 08:55 PM
 
70 posts, read 116,498 times
Reputation: 90
hey guys. that urbanophile website is great and has some really fantastic discussion.

thanks!
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Old 01-23-2013, 10:01 PM
 
Location: Chicago, IL
477 posts, read 531,643 times
Reputation: 275
This is another pretty interesting article: http://www.urbanophile.com/2010/06/0...of-cincinnati/ (a bit dated, OTR looks way better these days than in these pics!)
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