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Old 06-24-2011, 01:01 PM
 
56 posts, read 85,635 times
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I'd like them to crack down on who gets approved for public housing. What's the point of a background check if you ignore their backgrounds?
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Old 07-03-2011, 07:53 AM
 
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Default A Miracle:

A Miracle. Ole Sicilian
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Old 07-19-2011, 12:31 AM
 
Location: Fairfax County, VA
3,718 posts, read 4,555,792 times
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Commuter rail.
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Old 07-19-2011, 10:23 AM
 
2 posts, read 3,598 times
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Originally Posted by Cyborger View Post
I'd like them to crack down on who gets approved for public housing. What's the point of a background check if you ignore their backgrounds?
Any type of governemnt assistance should set the same standard as someone applying for employment.

They really should take some money and repave the back and side roads.

This is a very nice "looking" area. I've traveled by train to Cali, and was so glad to be home I could have hugged my trees. I can really only speak for Hampton, and really the areas around Langley which is where I grew up and still reside, but this is a great place to raise children.

(too bad for my kids, we're moving to Houston Texas and am absolutely thrilled to be moving away and experiencing something new)
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Old 07-19-2011, 01:51 PM
 
57 posts, read 186,121 times
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This is mostly Virgina Beach, but:


1. Just call the whole thing by one name, Norfolk, Hampton Roads, Virginia Beach, whatever. But keep the existing governments separate, and as they are. This way the cities that are run responsibly don't have to bear the debt and bad decisions of cities that are rife with corruption and mismanagement. But just having the name change could do great things, such as promote regional pride, and attract major league sports teams.

Do everything you can to attract and build stadiums for major league football, baseball, etc. teams.

2. Expand light rail to include stops that would service those who would use/need it most. The current, limited route is almost worthless. Have it start at Norfolk Naval Station, run to ODU, then down following the existing line with a branch going back and forth to the airport. Then you could just use the existing rail line in Virginia Beach to take it all the way through Town Center, incl. a stop at Oceana, all the way to the Oceanfront. Raze the whole area where the rail stops at Birdneck, and make it a hub, complete with tourist center, with shuttles running to and from the Oceanfront.

3. Continue to revitalize the Pembroke area, including razing the ghetto and out of place Pembroke mall, and building a more contemporary 2 level mall. Do everything you can to court Whole Foods into occupying the HQ space in the western lot. Build pedestrian bridges going across both VBB and Independence. Just a simple extension of the rail line, a new mall, and a Whole Foods would increase growth to Town Center exponentially.

4. Build a pedestrain walkway from Town Center, at Bonney, across 264 to Mount Trashmore. And yes, rename Mount Trashmore.

5. Raze/revitalize the area of Virginia Beach Boulevard around Birdneck. Raze Atlantis, Friendship Village, Trailer City, the slumlord areas around the 800 blocks off Parks Ave, etc. Encourage large scale business development in these areas.

6. Put a moratorium on new Sunsations and pseudo-food Italian/Mexican/Seafood Buffet type things on Atlantic. 90% of the food blows at the Oceanfront. Encourage individuality and quality in business establisments. This is a beautiful, sunny area, and deserves a little more thoughtfulness. There is no reason this area should not become more like the San Francisco bay area regarding types of businesses (esp. food). What about quality bakeries and places like 10,000 Villages in Richmond. Make it somewhere that goes beyond just catering to Ma and Pa Kettle and someplace someone like Giada deLaurentis would come to do a show. Cause right now all she could possibly do is go to Tautog's, walk on the beach, then get the hell out of town once she realized how sad the area is.

btw - the whole vibe of the 31st street outdoor theater/Catch 31 area is oustanding. A great model for a future vision of a vibrant, fun beachfront city.

7. Get rid of the damn feeder roads on Laskin and just widen it so people aren't playing endless games of car footsie as they try to decide what in the hell the specific right of way is for their situation at any given time.

8. Continue on the fix for the Laskin road corrider at the beach, so people are more easily routed onto 32nd street and don't bottleneck Laskin Road like sheep heading into a single-lane corral. Put flashing yellow lights along with the "cross traffic does not stop" sign at Arctic, so morons will pay attention to that sign and quit assuming it's a four way. Do something to help the people going north and south on Arctic to realize they don't have to stop at Laskin anymore. Anything that will help the daily 40-50 near accidents that now happen at this intersection.

9. Raze at least some of the seedier motels, including Circa del Mar, The Castle, Sandpiper, etc.

10. The Cinema Bistro is a bad idea. Keep that idea with the dollar movies. Instead build a real IMAX theater (like Riverside) showing first run movies like Harry Potter/Super 8. The kind of thing has not been experienced by many people, and when people sit down to a real IMAX movie in a nice theater, I think they would be blown away and never again pay for the fake IMAX in the regular theatres. Yes, I know there is an IMAX at the Aquarium, but they mostly show aquatic-themed movies. The one in Hampton is the one with the mainstream movies.

11. Expand, update Ocean Breeze to make a real amusement/water park worthy of bothering with.

12. Encourage and expand the Ghent type atmosphere in Norfolk. Having a real, old "downtown" to Hampton Roads is part of what makes the area worth visiting, and the more the area retains the historicity and hipsterish feel of a Greenwich Village, and quality small non-corporatized businesses like Naro, Cogan's and Doumar's the more attractive, vibrant and livable the area will be. Avoid pointless touristy development like Waterside and Nauticus in Norfolk. Keep the area like Careytown in Richmond or Greenwich Village - not like Town Center in Virginia Beach; they are two different things. The Chrysler is amazing, I have no idea why anyone would want to get rid of that.


Other things could be in the future such as expansion of the Hampton Roads bridge tunnel, and expansion of light rail to the peninsula, but I'm sure the costs involved are way out of reach for now.

The Oceanfront water is definitely polluted. Even a basic geology class at TCC will let you know this. Massive hog farm runoff and longshore drift produce an environment that isn't exactly healthy. The sand is also tacky due to most of it being imported from down Princess Anne as result of beach erosion. I don't think there is much you can about the pollution in the near future, and erosion is just the cost of human development along a coastline.

The brutally loud jet noise also contributes to a poor environment, but I think things would be worse in the short term not having the economic contributions of having Oceana in our city.

Last edited by thorntonm; 07-19-2011 at 02:31 PM..
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Old 07-19-2011, 05:37 PM
 
Location: Chesapeake, VA
41 posts, read 105,298 times
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I, too would love to see my home viewed as the wonderful place that it is, as opposed to the nasty picture that unhappy transplants try to paint. I hope that VB will realize that light rail, at least with stops at Town Center, Oceana and a stop linked to the Oceanfront would be the ideal use for the rail corridor they bought (after all, were it not for rail from Norfolk, Virginia Beach would certainly not exist as it does today). Extending light rail to the Naval Station, ODU, the airport and Ocean View would really make it a true success as well. But the starter line should do okay if these areas are considered in the relatively near future.

In all honesty though, I think the main reason that Hampton Roads is not seen in a positive light is that we are indeed overly reliant on the military for our economy. Diversification of our industries would do wonders to keep young college grads (like myself) in the area. In addition, the leaders of the seven cities should ask their fair share from the state. Richmond tends to ignore the second largest metro in the state in favor of the I-95 and I-81 corridors. As long as the vast majority of transportation funds are funneled toward Fairfax county, I-264 will continue to be neglected and I-64 will continue to be bottlenecked. Based on what we have available, I personally think the Hampton Roads area does rather well.

I would cater to the area's unique strengths to improve development: History, Military, Nature, Community. This area has things that no other area can claim. For example, Virginia Beach has the longest pleasure beach in the world, one of the US's oldest lighthouses, the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel, several major bases, and a famous boardwalk. It doesn't need casinos, massive high-rise oceanside hotels or dozens of golf courses that will only draw negative comparisons to Atlantic City, South Beach and Myrtle Beach, respectively.

I do think that the area can do some things better, but then again, so can DC, NYC, LA or any other city. My suggestions for the Hampton Roads are are as follows: Preserve Fort Monroe as a national monument or park and place the proposed National Slavery Museum nearby, as slavery's beginning and end are linked to the historic fort. Norfolk and Virginia Beach should also forge stronger links to the Navy bases and airfields within their limits (perhaps some kind of office that would act as a liaison between the city governments and commanders in the area) so that there are fewer conflicts with zoning and development and the military personnel stationed here feel more welcomed as opposed to unable to wait to leave. Like it or not, the military presence makes the region a major melting pot, and that should one of the things that make this area great. Access to the great outdoors is also something that tends to be downplayed. Back Bay and the Dismal Swamp are major stopping points for migrating birds, and there is a wide range of different animal and plant species to be discovered in them both. First Landing SP, False Cape SP, Northside Park, the Chesapeake Arboretum, the Botanical Gardens, Buckroe Beach Park, Newport News Park, Chippokes Plantation, Lone Star Lakes and more are all gems that should be discovered and re-discovered. Historic neighborhoods such as Ghent, Larchmont, Lafayette, Olde Towne, among others have a distinctive charm, and Norfolk and Portsmouth are doing a great job preserving and promoting them. Virginia Beach, Chesapeake and Suffolk have much younger neighborhoods, many not built until the 80's and 90's, so decrying their lack of history is irrelevant.

The 757 is far more than just the 7 cities as well. Instead of focusing on whether VB or Norfolk is the main city, there should be more of an effort to integrate the cities with one another and forge links with the Eastern Shore and Outer Banks, as we are by far the closest metro area to them. I know that the Historic Triangle, the Peninsula, the Southside cities, Virginia Beach itself, and the Outer Banks are all different regions, but a more integrated approach would make the area more attractive to businesses seeking a large market (especially offshore wind companies that could help diversify the economy). New York's influence covers half of New Jersey and a third of Connecticut. Why does Norfolk's influence halt at Newtown Road? Most of the communities between Williamsburg and Ocracoke are already linked by a common history and heritage; further cooperation is needed to improve the quality of life.

And finally, quality of life is not bad here! I've no doubt that many people here would love to live in New York, San Diego, Chicago, Miami or Seattle. However, overall, many people do indeed love living here, and I'm proud to say that I am one of them. The area has good schools, a lower crime rate than most, a long history, wonderful outdoor opportunities, and a lot of untapped potential remaining. A few haters won't spell doom for Hampton Roads, even if the traffic (an amalgam of all the driving styles of all the people who have moved here from elsewhere), jet noise (even though there are plenty of houses that are not adjacent to major military airfields) and lack of a major professional sports team are primary complaints I hear. Aside from the tired "Virginia Beach is not precisely the same as Jacksonville/San Diego/New York City/Houston/home, and therefore it is the worst place on the planet" tread. I could probably find things I dislike about those cities too, but I would much rather discover the better aspects of life and enjoy the time I do spend there.
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Old 09-18-2011, 06:23 AM
 
Location: Fairfax County, VA
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I also hope that light rail does eventually expand through the whole Hampton Roads area, as its planned to do.
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Old 09-18-2011, 02:12 PM
 
Location: Norfolk, VA
5,504 posts, read 5,278,883 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lethal2007 View Post
Thanks for asking, and here is exactly what I recommend for the South side

1. Bulldoze everything that is not in the Waterside, St. Pauls, Brambleton circle, north west to the rail yards, and north to 38th Street, and everything inside of Ballentine and Lafayette to the Zoo. The use of this land for residential single family like Park Place and Huntersville, and slums like Young Terrace is ludicrous. This land should be all zoned high rise commercial and residential. Any existing medical complexes or schools in the area can be kept. This area will be constructed as very walkable, and have tree lined streets, lots of benches, and police beat cops. I wish that Norfolk didnt use so much of their downtown on cemeteries, but I dont advocate moving them, so instead, we will just ban new burials in Norfolk.

2. Get rid of Portsmouth altogether. Annex west to about Frederick and South to the shipyard to Norfolk, give the rest to Chesapeake. Chesapeake would give up everything south to Providence, east to Military and west to the Elizabeth River. Do exactly the same thing with the annexed portion of Portsmouth and Chesapeake as you did with the rest of Norfolk. Most of this section should be nothing but high to midrise commercial and residential.

Now that we've constructed a downtown thats actually worth a crap

3. Get rid of the Scope, get rid of Chrysler Hall. They are dilapatated, and are taking up good downtown land, rebuild an arena that is large enough for NHL or NBA. You can build this where Chesterfield Heights used to be, and build a couple parking garages in the area that might be useful to Norfolk State and could be shared.

4. Speaking of Norfolk State, I would favor grants to help them eject the random housing and buildings unrelated to Norfolk State out of the campus and condence the campus some. I would also favor removing major roads such as Park Ave out of the campus.

5. Since weve already bulldozed all that crap along E. Virginia Beach Blvd (like the houses that have on street parking from Ballentine to Park Ave), we need to widen all of Virginia Beach Blvd to 4 lanes at least on each side all the way to the the Virginia Beach ocean front from Monticello. The back ups on this road where it shrinks to 2 or 3 lanes are insane (such as the Newtown intersection). This will require knocking down some businesses and houses past the Ballentine bulldoze point. Oh well. The only real problem I see is Booker T. Washington High School, and Im not sure what to do about that. Maybe we do all the road widening southward. The craziness of 264 getting off right in to Downtown Norfolk needs to go. This exit needs to be much further back, and feed in to Virginia Beach Blvd.

6. Construct an excellent public transportation system. I think the major hub should be constructed between Ingleside and Ballentine on E. Virgina Beach Blvd. Here there will be several parking garages, and it will be a stop for the rail line, and a number of buses. I dont know if that track going through is still in use, but if it is, it needs to go. Light rail will have several destinations. There will be a stop possibly on the corner of east city hall and St. Paul. A stop on Bousch close to the TCC, another stop by Sentara and CHKD, a stop by ODU, and stops on either side Norfolk State, to be used by students and for Harbor Park and the new Arena. This could possibly be covered by one line. Another line should be constructed to go to the Zoo, Bon Securs and the Naval Base. A third line will go across to Portsmouth and stop at the Naval Hospital and the Shipyard. The downtown tunnel needs to be widened. Express buses should be added that go between the following and the hub station, Janaf/Military Circle, Towncenter/Pembroke, Lynnhaven Mall, Dam Neck/Oceana, Greenbrier, Princess Anne Park/Amphitheatre/Sportsplex, VB Convention center. Express Bus lanes should be built wherever possible. Park and Ride stations will be at PA Park, Town Center, Convention Center. There also needs to be a high capacity, high end fairy, like the Staten Island fairy. I would build 1 terminal right near Harbor Park (which would be right near a train stop as well) 1 terminal near Portsmouth Naval, and 1 terminal where the Ford plant was. 1 fairy between the three should be sufficient.

7. A tremendous campaign needs to be developed by the region. Corporations who will build large office towers will get free land, and corporations who will relocate their HQ here will get whatever tax breaks we can hand them. We can use the fact that we have so many local colleges and an excellent public transportation system as well as our geographic benefits to try to lure in business.

8. When we have significant corporate presence, do what we can to make sure the military leaves. I know that is a Federal matter, but we can jack up taxes on government contracts or whatever else we can to make doing business too expensive, and the Navy can sail down to Jacksonville.



Hampton Roads is actually not a growing metro at all. Its growth has practically stopped, with most of that being in Chesapeake and Suffolk. Norfolk, Portsmouth and Hampton have been losing people or been basically flat for years. Virginia Beach, which once was the source of most of the areas population influx, has slowed to less than 5% growth. Turns out, the only thing it had going for it, affordable housing, has dissapeared, and nobody wants to come here any longer.



Thats funny, because, Hampton Roads is one of the oldest colonizations of Europeans in North America. Norfolk was incorporated in 1705, which makes it not too much younger than Boston or NYC. It has better weather, and just as good of natural port as New York City or Boston, plus it is generally better for growing and is nearly smack dab in the middle of the eastern sea board. You absolutely could not dream up a better place than Hampton Roads. Yet, Hampton Roads basically rotted as a backwater tobacco field for decades while NYC and Boston became some of the most important cities in the country and the world. So when you are saying that you cant compare Norfolk to NYC or Boston, you absolutely can compare them. There is no other reason for Norfolk not being a world class city other than it being an abject failure.

On top of that, how on earth do you explain cities that were founded way after Norfolk, that not only eclipsed Norfolk, but buried it. Cities like Chicago, Indianapolis, Cleveland, Charlotte, Nashville, Atlanta......



What does Hampton Roads have that you cant find somewhere else better? There is nothing unique about here. Its like a giant stale suburb.

Black Perception: Stuck in Hampton Roads
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Old 09-26-2011, 02:06 AM
 
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Theres a beach here? But I thought beaches have sand.....Forgive me I am from Florida....I must not understand that the meaning of beach here in Va means a DIRT covered ground, and water FILLED with FUNK and JELLY FISH! I am sorry I just gotta lay it out you wonder why people hate it so much here....well lets see for 30-45 mins yesterday I a women by my self had to beg barrow and steal for a jump (car wouldn't start) even tho I had my own cables. People are mean here. You want a community? One people don't hate? Then act like it. I stop when I see people broken down. I try to help those in need. everyone else here just drives by. MOST people here are jack a$$es. Face the facts You ask how we would fix it. Turn down your damn PERSONAL radios and stop to help people. Care about people. No one here does. Set an example.
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Old 09-26-2011, 05:08 AM
 
1,210 posts, read 2,103,368 times
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Originally Posted by prismsailor1 View Post
Theres a beach here? But I thought beaches have sand.....Forgive me I am from Florida....I must not understand that the meaning of beach here in Va means a DIRT covered ground, and water FILLED with FUNK and JELLY FISH! I am sorry I just gotta lay it out you wonder why people hate it so much here....well lets see for 30-45 mins yesterday I a women by my self had to beg barrow and steal for a jump (car wouldn't start) even tho I had my own cables. People are mean here. You want a community? One people don't hate? Then act like it. I stop when I see people broken down. I try to help those in need. everyone else here just drives by. MOST people here are jack a$$es. Face the facts You ask how we would fix it. Turn down your damn PERSONAL radios and stop to help people. Care about people. No one here does. Set an example.
Every morning a different car with Florida plates zooms past me at 90mph in the right lane on I64 and then cuts me off as they fly across 4 lanes to get into the base at the last second... that isn't you is it?
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