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View Poll Results: Which Rust Belt City has the Most Potential to Make a Comeback?
Akron, OH 7 5.69%
Allentown/Bethlehem/Easton, PA 6 4.88%
Altoona/Johnstown, PA 0 0%
Binghamton/Elmira, NY 3 2.44%
Buffalo, NY 7 5.69%
Camden, NJ 0 0%
Canton, OH 2 1.63%
Cincinnati, OH 16 13.01%
Cleveland, OH 22 17.89%
Dayton, OH 2 1.63%
Detroit, MI 15 12.20%
Erie, PA 5 4.07%
Harrisburg, PA 2 1.63%
Huntington, WV/Ashland, KY 2 1.63%
Janesville/Beloit, WI 0 0%
Newark/Paterson, NJ 4 3.25%
Philadelphia, PA 29 23.58%
Pittsburgh, PA 44 35.77%
Racine/Kenosha, WI 3 2.44%
Reading, PA 0 0%
Rochester, NY 5 4.07%
Rockford, IL 3 2.44%
Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, PA 9 7.32%
Syracuse, NY 5 4.07%
Toledo, OH 2 1.63%
Trenton, NJ 3 2.44%
Wilmington, DE 5 4.07%
Youngstown/Warren, OH 2 1.63%
York, PA 2 1.63%
Other (Please Specify Below in a Reply) 5 4.07%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 123. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 04-17-2007, 05:03 PM
 
Location: Polish Hill, Pittsburgh, PA
30,205 posts, read 67,351,355 times
Reputation: 15855

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Much of this forum tends to focus primarily on the rapidly-growing Sunbelt areas, so I thought it might be nice to draw some attention away from the glory-mongering places like Charlotte, Raleigh/Durham, Austin, Phoenix, etc. and put the spotlight onto the Northeast and Midwest. In your opinion, which city in the "Rust Belt" has the greatest potential for a turnaround? Why did you make your choice? The Rust Belt is the old, urbanized industrial
North---an area that has seen various economic cycles over the past several decades. I consider the Rust-Belt to encompass the following states, which are generally near to the Great Lakes:

Delaware
Illinois
Indiana
Maryland
Michigan
New Jersey
New York
Ohio
Pennsylvania
West Virginia
Wisconsin
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Old 04-17-2007, 06:13 PM
 
Location: Polish Hill, Pittsburgh, PA
30,205 posts, read 67,351,355 times
Reputation: 15855
I personally did not vote for one city in particular, as I think all of the cities I mentioned are poised for a revival at some point. I personally think out of this list that Allentown/Bethlehem/Easton, PA will be the fastest to rebound as it is gobbled up as the southwesternmost exurb of NYC and the northernmost exurb of Philadelphia. While Allentown still has a rather "dusty" and "sketchy" image, Bethlehem is already well on its way to a rebound. Easton is somewhat between the two in terms of a comeback from what I've seen. Both Lehigh and Northampton Counties have seen significant population growth in recent years, along with a steep rise in the cost-of-living. I also think in the long-term that Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, PA would be the next metro area in line to see some investment from the growing NYC metropolitan area, which is now stretching its fingers into nearby Monroe County, PA (Stroudsburg/Mount Pocono area). Both Luzerne and Lackawanna Counties showed population growth in 2006 after many decades of continual decline, which is only a sign of better things to come.

I'm also hopeful that Paterson and Newark will start to clean themselves up in the same manner that other nearby cities, such as Hoboken and Jersey City have. I've also been reading nothing but positive news about the long-term population projections of Pittsburgh; the metro area is expected to finally start gaining population again within the next few years.

Please post some of your ideas as well. I realize that due to space limitations in the poll that I omitted a few other keynote locales (Flint, MI and Gary, IN immediately come to mind), so feel free to respond with other cities as well.
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Old 04-17-2007, 06:24 PM
 
1,229 posts, read 3,154,422 times
Reputation: 286
I personally feel that Pgh has beauty, charm and alot of good people in it, housing is affordable, even cheap in some comparisons too, that it could make a wonderful comeback. Then again, I am rather biased, being a native here!~

Great post BTW!~
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Old 04-17-2007, 06:36 PM
 
Location: Polish Hill, Pittsburgh, PA
30,205 posts, read 67,351,355 times
Reputation: 15855
Quote:
Originally Posted by PghPaNative View Post
I personally feel that Pgh has beauty, charm and alot of good people in it, housing is affordable, even cheap in some comparisons too, that it could make a wonderful comeback. Then again, I am rather biased, being a native here!~
I agree wholeheartedly. Judging by a lot of the opinions on the Pittsburgh sub-forum, there seems to be a lot of skepticism regarding proposed new projects in the city, as well as an overall sense of negativity from the residents in regards to the city's overall future. I realize that all of the cities I listed have a lot of "hurdles", but Pittsburgh's are no worse than some others that have made successful rebounds. As soon as the city's residents start to believe in their city again and have faith, good things will start to occur. I've been to the city before, and you truly can't duplicate the mental image you get when you step out of the incline car and take in the panoramic view of the skyline, the three rivers, and Heinz Field from Mt. Washington. The city's little neighborhoods, like Oakland, Squirrel Hill, Shadyside, Mexican War Streets, etc. are all unique and offer something for everyone in the way of architectural variety. I would love to visit the city again soon; I just wish it wasn't in the opposite corner of the state!

Quote:
Originally Posted by PghPaNative View Post
Great post BTW!~
Thanks. I'm a big proponent of urban renewal, which is why topics like this are of such interest to me. I enjoy whipping out the camera and hitting the streets of Scranton and Wilkes-Barre, and I soon hope to expand that to other nearby cities such as Binghamton, Elmira, Allentown, Bethlehem, Easton, Hazleton, Williamsport, and Pottsville. I've been a 'burb boy my whole life thus far, but the "big city" beckons me. Once I'm out of school, I hope to settle down near Downtown Scranton to establish my career and start rehabbing a home with some TLC. I've had enough of fast-food restaurants, parking lots, Wal-Marts, Volvo station wagons, and McMansions; I'm ready to live on a tree-lined street with sidewalks and older homes and down-to-earth neighbors who actually want to get to know you (unlike here in suburbia where neighborly meetings seem to be "forced").
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Old 04-17-2007, 06:43 PM
 
1,229 posts, read 3,154,422 times
Reputation: 286
Sadly, but "forced " really is the key word here and the problem we have...not just here but in soceity in general, its seems to me that people really do not care do something, till things are so bad, that then they have to step up to the plate or else here.

Just like alot of things in life here too, people just rather not be proactive or address the issues, till its too late to do something bout it, lets hope that its not the case here for these beautiful towns, it really would be ashame to lose them.

I am interested in what others think here! Good luck on your ventures SWB!
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Old 04-17-2007, 07:49 PM
 
Location: Chicagoland area
554 posts, read 2,280,092 times
Reputation: 523
Default Gary, Indiana

I think Gary Hammond & EC have extreme potential. Those three cities alone could extremelt improve Lake County's economy. All on Lake Michigan, and in close proximity to Chicago. Hotels and high rise condo's along the lake front, a shopping district somewhere, etc.
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Old 04-17-2007, 08:40 PM
Status: "Summer!" (set 20 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
87,008 posts, read 102,606,536 times
Reputation: 33064
Delaware, New Jersey and Maryland are not exactly 'Great Lakes' states. Maryland hardly counts as rust belt becasue much of the state is suburban DC, which, like it or not, will be with us a long time as the nation's capital.

Pittsburgh has been talking "comeback" for so long, I'll believe it when I see it. Therefore, I would go with Gary-Hammond, because Chicago, their parent area, isn't so depressed. IMO, Pittsburgh is a nicer city, however.
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Old 04-17-2007, 09:23 PM
 
Location: Polish Hill, Pittsburgh, PA
30,205 posts, read 67,351,355 times
Reputation: 15855
Quote:
Originally Posted by pittnurse70 View Post
Delaware, New Jersey and Maryland are not exactly 'Great Lakes' states. Maryland hardly counts as rust belt becasue much of the state is suburban DC, which, like it or not, will be with us a long time as the nation's capital.

Pittsburgh has been talking "comeback" for so long, I'll believe it when I see it. Therefore, I would go with Gary-Hammond, because Chicago, their parent area, isn't so depressed. IMO, Pittsburgh is a nicer city, however.
By Maryland I was solely referencing the old industrial city of Cumberland in the western panhandle (I probably should have specified that but I didn't have room in the poll). By Delaware, I only meant the Wilmington area. By New Jersey, I meant the entire state, and I realize it doesn't abut a Great Lake (Unless you count Lake Hopatcong! LOL!)

We've been hearing "comeback" for many years in each and every one of the cities I listed. Some cities have been more successful than others. I think Pittsburgh is actually a bit ahead of the curve as compared to most others on that list. You will have to believe it because you will be seeing it in your lifetime---Pittsburgh will be a nice, safe, friendly place to call home again and will be growing in population and vibrancy instead of declining.
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Old 04-17-2007, 09:40 PM
 
Location: Lincoln, Nebraska (moving to Ohio)
673 posts, read 3,752,987 times
Reputation: 474
I have to say I think that Scranton/Wilkes-Barre has the best chance because of its close proximity to New York City. I havent been there but it just seems like the only area in close proximity to the east coast that is not overpriced. The pictures from Scranton/Wikes-Barre and the topography are just incredible also!

I do think Pittsburgh has incredible potential also. I was there about 4 years ago for a couple of days and it was a great city. Lots of great architecture, very appealing and dense urban neighborhoods with tons of character, great topography, great infrastructure.
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Old 04-18-2007, 05:38 AM
 
53 posts, read 285,285 times
Reputation: 24
Cities such as Syracuse and Rochester have much to offer in regards to infrastructure, especially great universities and medical centers. Having decent amounts of "old money" around doesn't hurt either. They may not regain all their lost population any time soon, but these cities should be able to offer a good quality of life.
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