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Old 06-15-2008, 08:27 PM
 
Location: Polish Hill, Pittsburgh, PA
30,184 posts, read 67,320,481 times
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It is quite apparent to most of us that this forum is very heavily-slanted towards generally autocentric cities in the Sunbelt, namely Charlotte, Raleigh/Durham, Atlanta, Houston, Dallas/Fort Worth, Phoenix, and much of Florida. Meanwhile,historically-significant cities like Buffalo, Pittsburgh, Scranton, Cleveland, Detroit, Gary, Newark, Camden, Syracuse, Binghamton, etc. continue to struggle and wallow around in self-deprecation, white flight, and rising crime and poverty issues. Is the Rust Belt truly dying, or will it soon round the corner? I can definitely see light at the end of the tunnel for places like Allentown/Bethlehem/Easton, PA and Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, PA as the BosWash Corridor continues to expand westward and devours both metropolitan areas as commuters search for inexpensive real estate, but what about cities that are unable to "leech" off of the success of other more prominent cities nearby? Why has everyone developed such a hatred for the Rust Belt? You can't replicate the Tudors of Buffalo or the Victorians of Scranton in some sterile suburb along Lake Norman in North Carolina. Why is the latter so much more popular?
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Old 06-16-2008, 11:11 AM
 
5,857 posts, read 14,043,096 times
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In the US, we have this penchant for throwing away what we no longer want or need. Thus it is for our industrial cities. The market has determined that the infrastructure and institutions (including the great architecture) of most Rust Belt cities must be greatly de-valued.

Chicago is probably the biggest exception among the Rust Belt cities. Its non-manufacturing economy has picked up the slack when the manufacturers declined. BTW, in spite of its prosperity, large swaths of the city look identical to Detroit's present industrial landscape, from the steel mills of the Southeast side to the manuafcturing plants on the West and North sides. Just take a trip on the Metra train, any line, and you'll see it.

What you want to happen to devalued cities is recycling, pure and simple. Makes lots of sense to me, but not to the market. If we want the benefits of capitalism, we have to live with its faults. As you know, any of us who speak against this are likely to be labled "socialists".

I'm not looking for change in my lifetime.
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Old 06-16-2008, 11:23 AM
 
11,873 posts, read 32,899,856 times
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I think the Rust Belt can definitely rebound, and I think it will, hopefully.

However, I don't think heavy industry will make a comeback in the old Rust Belt because of the double whammy of high taxes and belligerent labor unions.

Rather, I think small entrepreneurs is what old Rust Belt cities need to encourage. Those beautiful old cities like Cleveland, Buffalo, Youngstown, Scranton (heh heh) have some great old neighborhoods that are begging to be redeveloped. Rust Belt states generally have very good public schools, too.

So, with its relatively well-educated workforce and availability of ready-to-possess buildings (many in cool neighborhoods), I think Rust Belt cities and states should structure their taxes better so that those educated entrepreneurs will start their businesses there rather than continuing to migrate to Sun Belt boomtowns.
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Old 06-16-2008, 12:14 PM
 
5,721 posts, read 9,085,203 times
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Nothing a little Rustoleum can't cure.
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Old 06-16-2008, 02:21 PM
 
Location: St Simons Island, GA
23,045 posts, read 35,003,509 times
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My belief is that what goes around comes around; the Rust Belt will rebound.
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Old 06-16-2008, 03:05 PM
 
721 posts, read 2,351,707 times
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I think the Great Lakes cities will see an eventual revival for several reasosn. First, the urban sprawl and consumption society we live in cannot last. Cities like Phoenix, LA, Las Vegas, and Atlanta will run out of water resources shortly. It is uncontrolled growth which cannot last.

Secondly, the Rust belt will begin to function more as a unit as cooperation between Canada and the US Great Lakes Cities takes place. This region doe snot think of itself as an economic or cultural unit, but it really is. There is more trade taking place between Canada and the US than any other country.

I do not think that many cities will ever again be the fastest growing or see huge growht, but I can see stability, new industries taking shape, and a transformed economy, albeit slowly.

Here are a few articles: Survival a creative exercise in rust belt cities (http://www.nationalpost.com/news/story.html?id=569523 - broken link)

BYM Marine Environment News

The study by the Brookings intsitute indicated that commitment to cleaning up the Great Lakes could benefit cities like Duluth, Milwaukee, and Chicago into the hundreds of millions of dollars of economic reinvestment and property values.

All of these cities have investment in infastructure and prestigious higher education systems and an educated workforce. They will be fine.
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Old 06-16-2008, 05:57 PM
 
2,502 posts, read 8,047,258 times
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Are we on the same forum? Most people here seem to detest the sunbelt and would rather promote NYC/Philly, etc.

Anyway, I think potential rebounds will vary by city. I just hope none of them rebound too much...gradual changes in population are much better than rapid changes in population.
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Old 06-16-2008, 06:06 PM
 
11,172 posts, read 22,363,867 times
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I think most areas of the midwest are healthy. When we hear "rustbelt" we all think of Cleveland, Detroit, Gary, Flint.

The combined population of those cities is around 1,500,000 people.

This is around 2.2% of the population of the Midwest as a whole. So a VAST majority of people live outside these depressed urban centers. Most people either live in smaller towns, or more likely, suburbs. The Detroit and Cleveland suburbs, where most of the people live, are fine. They certainly don't look like central detroit.
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Old 06-16-2008, 08:55 PM
 
721 posts, read 2,351,707 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chicago60614 View Post
I think most areas of the midwest are healthy. When we hear "rustbelt" we all think of Cleveland, Detroit, Gary, Flint.

The combined population of those cities is around 1,500,000 people.

This is around 2.2% of the population of the Midwest as a whole. So a VAST majority of people live outside these depressed urban centers. Most people either live in smaller towns, or more likely, suburbs. The Detroit and Cleveland suburbs, where most of the people live, are fine. They certainly don't look like central detroit.
Yes, it is true that there are certain cities that are desperate for salvation (Cleveland, Detroit, Gary, Buffalo, Rochester, Toledo, Erie, Duluth, Milwaukee among others) Cleveland, according to the Federal Reserve Bank, is the poorest big city in the US wiht 1/3 of it's residents living in poverty. In today's society, families can choose to live in a number of cities and still work for the same employer. So, this poverty rate may say something more about Cleveland than other Great Lakes Cities.

The focus of the region should be to tap into the wealth of educated young workers and seek ways to keep them in the region rather than seeing vast amounts of young students, and young families leave the region for better prospects in "cooler cities" like Seattle, Portland, and cities in the South and East like Miami and Charlotte.

The detractor is that most Great Lakes Cities do not offer the high job growth, high average pay, and employment opportuntites that other major metros offer to the same degree. Notable exceptions include Chicago and perhaps Pittsburgh.
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Old 06-16-2008, 09:26 PM
 
Location: San Antonio
10,238 posts, read 18,742,495 times
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Come the total breakdown of American society places like Detroit and Pittsburg will once again be well placed and once again in demand.
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