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Old 06-28-2007, 10:52 PM
 
11,620 posts, read 31,834,747 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by strumpeace View Post
The decline and collapse of Hickory Hill is one of the most fascinating and rapid urban declines ever in the history of the US.
Ain't it the truth! It's like it happened right before our very eyes. One day, the Mall of Memphis was the premier mall in the Mid-South. A year later half the stores were closed, and a year after that it just shut down completely. And those movie theaters nearby (Applewood? Applegate? Apple-something-or-other) went from being the nicest movie theaters in the city to being vacant in just a few months, it seems. When I was a student at Ole Miss, that's where we'd go: Mall of Memphis, Huey's (in that movie theater shopping center), and the movie theater. Now they're all gone, and I wouldn't dare wander around there at night unarmed.

I still say Midtown is the coolest place in Memphis. Nobody brags about a city's greatness because of its suburbs; it's the cool inner-city neighborhoods which make a city great.
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Old 06-28-2007, 11:25 PM
 
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Thank you all for responding. My husband is there now and he found a building today. He is raving about Southhaven MS. He says it is only 10-15 minutes away from the office and pretty nice. I am going down with him next Thursday, I can't to see for myself! We are going to start the house hunting project because we are trying to get it done before the kids start school. I have one starting kindergarten and I don't want him to be too confused.
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Old 06-29-2007, 08:13 AM
 
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JMT --

You mentioned the Mall of Memphis. Have you visited mallofmemphis.org? The guy who put it together has done of great job of documenting the mall's last years. Absolutely fascinating stuff.
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Old 06-29-2007, 08:50 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by strumpeace View Post
The decline and collapse of Hickory Hill is one of the most fascinating and rapid urban declines ever in the history of the US.

Can you elaborate with comparisons to other rapid declines?
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Old 06-29-2007, 08:55 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JMT View Post
Ain't it the truth! It's like it happened right before our very eyes. One day, the Mall of Memphis was the premier mall in the Mid-South. A year later half the stores were closed, and a year after that it just shut down completely. And those movie theaters nearby (Applewood? Applegate? Apple-something-or-other) went from being the nicest movie theaters in the city to being vacant in just a few months, it seems. When I was a student at Ole Miss, that's where we'd go: Mall of Memphis, Huey's (in that movie theater shopping center), and the movie theater. Now they're all gone, and I wouldn't dare wander around there at night unarmed.

I still say Midtown is the coolest place in Memphis. Nobody brags about a city's greatness because of its suburbs; it's the cool inner-city neighborhoods which make a city great.

Appletree. That's what's happens if you don't enact and enforce intelligent development codes. What's most distressing is that the county doesn't seem to have learned its lesson. Maybe this requires a consolidated government. maybe the slow progress in changing development attitudes is the result of dual government? I don't know. But East Winchester by the new pkwy isn't any better insulated from the fate of Hickory Hill. It's still sprawlsville, just like G'town Pkwy from G'town to Cordova. Even Poplar Pike into Collierville is lined with sprawling shopping centers. The county needs to encourage better developments -- zero-setbacks, plaza sidewalks, pedestrian friendly.
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Old 06-29-2007, 03:57 PM
 
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Quote:
Can you elaborate with comparisons to other rapid declines?
Honestly, I know of no other area where fear-mongering and racism played such a dynamic and dramatic role in destroying a neighborhood with such urgency. In 1997, Hickory Hill was a thriving, middle-upper class neighborhood. In 1998, the City annexed Hickory Hill, and within two years, the area had become largely what it is today. And for absolutely no reason, imo.
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Old 06-29-2007, 04:04 PM
 
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I don't understand why everything goes back to racism. Why do you say that?

I used to live in the area. it became dangerous. I heard gunshots at night. I moved. Nothing to do with race; it could have been white people shooting, whatever, I don't want to be around it. Why the area declined so much, I have no clue. I know that when i lived there, there were a ton of white people in the area, but when crime started taking over, most moved out. You can't blame people for that or say it's racist.

Unless there is something else I'm not understanding.
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Old 06-29-2007, 04:21 PM
 
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The best I can do is direct you to some studies that show numerical trends and the resulting disaster. My opinion that racism played a role is based solely on my discussions with community leaders in Hickory Hill and people within the housing and planning professions here in Memphis. I in no way want to suggest that every individual who fled Hickory Hill between 1997 and 1999 is a racist; there were legitimate reasons for leaving, of course. However, institutionally, based on the studies I've read and my talks with the people 'on the ground' there, I can come to no other conclusion than racism played a tremendous role in the breakdown of that community.
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Old 06-29-2007, 10:18 PM
 
1,031 posts, read 2,026,117 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by strumpeace View Post
Honestly, I know of no other area where fear-mongering and racism played such a dynamic and dramatic role in destroying a neighborhood with such urgency. In 1997, Hickory Hill was a thriving, middle-upper class neighborhood. In 1998, the City annexed Hickory Hill, and within two years, the area had become largely what it is today. And for absolutely no reason, imo.
It still sounds like personal anecdotal evidence. Which has its own inherent validity. But also has inherent weaknesses. And you haven't named other areas you've considered. Basically, it sounds like you're saying, "I suspect that Hickroy Hill one of the most fascinating and rapid urban declines ever in the history of the US (based on the neighborhoods in the US I am aware of)," which is different from the broad conclusion that encompasses every neighborhood in America. The validity behind such a broad judgment requires a sense of how many neighborhoods you've studied to the same degree as Hickory Hill, and whether there are distinguishing factors among those neighborhoods.

You may be right. But before I follow that logic, I'd like to be able to follow yours.
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Old 07-01-2007, 03:05 PM
 
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Smile MallofMemphis.org

Quote:
Originally Posted by strumpeace View Post
JMT --

You mentioned the Mall of Memphis. Have you visited mallofmemphis.org? The guy who put it together has done of great job of documenting the mall's last years. Absolutely fascinating stuff.
I'm the guy - and thanks very much! Many people have contributed pictures, opinions and memories to the site which really has made it interesting. All points of view are welcome.

Thanks for the kind words.

Doug
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