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Old 05-27-2012, 08:36 PM
 
Location: Tucson, AZ
1,521 posts, read 1,556,011 times
Reputation: 3745

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My house finally sold. I paid 220k in 2005 and the house sold for get this, ready for it....... 107k. I came back this week to finalize the deal with the new owners, who are a big rental firm, so that's reassuring for the poor folks still living in the neighborhood. there are 12 houses for sale on my street, and probably a couple more in trouble.

As I leave Tucson, for the last time, I wonder what's wrong with the city?

I have finally figured out the answer.

Lack of Innovation.

Everything that Phoenix are does right, Tucson thinks "we don't want to be Phoenix." So they do the opposite and drive away more opportunity.

Everything that was proposed to improve the city socially is voted down.

Everything that once supported the city gets alienated and leaves.

Every improvement to infrastructure proposed gets denied.

Every large project that could do something to boost the economy is too expensive.

But knowing Tucson's average resident they don't care, and will say don't let the door hit you on the way out. Which will prove my point.

To the young people thinking about making Tucson home, move along, it took me 7 years to figure out there is nothing here. I lost tons of money here... Even when the economy was good this city was just overpriced stucco and chicken wire houses and strip malls. It's a shame with the mountains and the "green" desert the city could be truly unique and draw tourism.

 
Old 05-27-2012, 08:55 PM
 
Location: outer space
484 posts, read 749,541 times
Reputation: 393
Sorry to hear the bitterness.

I see that your home went underwater a lot. Many places in the country experienced this.

Now, to be helpful to future possible residents maybe you can be specific about the points you listed above.

Certainly Tucson does not lead the way in any of the areas you mentioned. But what about the streetcar being built, Meet me at Maynards, Tucson meet yourself, one of the few Optics Centers in the US, recent redistricting of a huge swath of land north of downtown, the apartments set to go up west of I10 near downtown, etc.

Maybe you are referring to spring training leaving Tucson, well building stadiums does cost a lot of money and many analyses show that it is fiscally irresponsible at best. Stadium subsidy - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Your feelings are valid but please, provide specifics to help other people. I'd hate for people to think that you are just ranting on here and trying to justify your move to yourself.

And when saying it took you seven years to figure this out, that doesn't fare well for your mental prowess. But maybe you just liked it here when there was a housing boom and you made a lot of money. Tucson is better for people who appreciate outdoors over money.


http://www.headlightllc.com/bestsummer2011/

http://www.kvoa.com/news/tucson-rank...friendly-city/

http://www.slideshare.net/FiservPR/t...prices-8783329

http://www.smartplanet.com/blog/citi...skin%3Bcontent

Last edited by robabeatle; 05-27-2012 at 09:04 PM..
 
Old 05-27-2012, 09:44 PM
 
Location: Tucson, AZ
1,521 posts, read 1,556,011 times
Reputation: 3745
Of course, I would be happy to be specific so that people don't make the mistakes I made.

My parents home in Portland lost 18% of its value at the same time my house in Tucson lost 52% of its value in the same time period. The house is worthless now than it was in 1999. Over the long term the house still lost money, so that to me says something has been wrong in Tucson for at least a decade. The people who sold in 2005-2006 were the only ones who "made" money.* The house I own in Portland now has gained 3% value in the last 6 months, my parents house is back up to per-recession value, while houses in Tucson continue to decline in value.

*Ultra luxury homes in the foothills don't count.

Specific Examples
1. The RTA has had this street car project on the books forever. There is a difference between doing something and saying you'll do something. I don't know how many countless projects have broken ground only to have funding yanked and the project dies. Rio Nuevo, the convention center/hotel, the I-10 spur route. All of those projects have been in the works for at least 5 years and not a single one has made any real progression. I'm surprised TEPs new building was actually completed, in all of its 9 story glory.

2. When I moved here the constituents of the city were still bitter about the rattlesnake bridge being a waste of money. Every time new airmen came to Tucson and we went downtown they would point out the rattle snake bridge and go "oh neat". People don't think things like that add value for them or the city, but they do. They just see a dollar value and think "I'll never use that, so why should I pay for it?" Prospective residents and businesses care how a city looks, and every little thing that makes a city unique makes it more attractive. I thought the rainbow bridge was a good idea, it could be one of those unique things people remember when they drive through Tucson. Or just something...anything. Right now all they see is open mines and a couple of small buildings built in the 80s.

The first time I drove into to Tucson I though wow, the mountains are a lot more grand than I thought they would be, but then I started noticing miles of dilapidated business and trailers and it ruined the initial wow factor. Now it looks better but it took a miracle to get the I-10 project done. Which by the way, took 7 years to complete 4 miles, and is just another example of the low ambition the city has, don't get me wrong it looks a lot nicer now. Now they need to do 4 lanes to Vail before that traffic gets out of hand. Tucson never does anything preemptively, they always take action after things become an issue. Look at Kolb/Grant, they could have built a freeway, but they didn't now look at it. I clocked 1:05 from Houghton and Golf Links to Tucson Mall. Taking the freeway was only minutes shorter and only because you could go faster. After a while we avoided going to anything on the NW side. I also believe this is why the Park Place was doing better than the Tucson Mall area.

3. Spring training. Glendale ponied up, Peoria ponied up, Tucson did not. End of story. I honestly didn't care about spring training because none of the big names came anyway. I actually heard that some teams will play a few exhibition games this year at TEP. I Enjoyed University of Arizona games a lot more but I was a student so I felt a real connection.

4. I'm not the only one who has left. Pima county lost a net of 43,000 residents in just 3 years. I don't quote Tucson because people are quick to say that the people moved out to the burbs (Vail, Sahuarita, OV). It's not true, the whole area is losing people.

The fundamental problem with Tucson is that is is a city that relies on carpetbaggers. No one really invests in Tucson. There are very few Tucson born and raised multi- generational families in Tucson. I realize that I was a carpetbagger myself but I just don't feel there is any pride in being a Tucsonan for the upper midwest transplants that move to Tucson.

You are right about my mental prowess, I feel really awful that I let $20,000+ and additional 70k dollars in payments vanish in an i'll placed bet the housing market would continue to grow. A silver-tounged Moderator cut: snip realtor also played on my delusions. When the housing market tanked a year later, and I mean it came out of nowhere, I though I'll just rent it. But it got so bad I had to reevaluate and had to face the fact no one will rent a house for $1200/mo when they can rent a better house for $850, hell you can buy a house for $70-80 grand now. The mortgage payment on my house for the new buyer is 639 a mo. That's half of what I would have to rent it for.

All I can say is: Tucson itself was a bubble. It has no good paying jobs. If the military cuts back, that could be a second round disaster for the city.

I found a lot of good in Tucson like 4th/Congress, the mountains, U of A, but it just never gives a feeling of prosperity. It always has this depressed, not much happening feeling. The city could be better but a 1/10th of a cent increase to improve life is just too much for Tucson's citizens to pony up.

Good luck to Tucson in the future.

Last edited by Kimballette; 05-28-2012 at 06:55 AM.. Reason: Consumer complaints are not permitted on City-Data.
 
Old 05-28-2012, 09:57 AM
 
Location: Hell
192 posts, read 552,586 times
Reputation: 139
@AndyAMG, I can understand your frustration about Tucson.

Anyway, I have my eye on those new market rate affordable non-student rental developments downtown...more specifically, downtown west (mercado) and stone/broadway (chase parking lot). As soon as they get finished, I'll jump into it. I'll even check at the office leasing.

I've read that there's consideration on expanding the street car route.

Here's some suggestions that will touch a nerve among MOST Tucsonans - McDonalds's, Wendy's, mini-Target, mini-Walmart , Frys or Safeway located downtown (put it tucked in the Pioneer Plaza and/or the old Unisource building). It's nice to have diversity and options downtown. I think I mentioned an air-tram to Mt. Lemon, the Rainbow Bridge, large 3D IMAX and a free standing tower....AndyAMG, wished you luck.

....I forgot to add crosstown freeways. High-rise and mid-rise buildings...that's coming. he he.

Last edited by acatalanb; 05-28-2012 at 10:23 AM.. Reason: FORGOT CROSSTOWN FREEWAY WILL BE BUILT IN THE NEAR FUTURE
 
Old 05-28-2012, 10:35 AM
 
Location: Charlotte. NC
196 posts, read 337,805 times
Reputation: 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by AndyAMG View Post
But knowing Tucson's average resident they don't care, and will say don't let the door hit you on the way out. Which will prove my point.
When you talk about the avg resident like this in an earlier post, most think you would be better suited back in Portland. Earlier post of yours last year:

"I lived in Tucson, AZ for 5 years, Tucson people are very wierd, it has no identity and nothing going for it. The old white retirees are downright nasty, and complain about everything, drive awful, are just over the top racist, always want something for nothing are anti-everything, openly gun totoing paranoid lunatics with old trcuks with 7 inch lifts and 33" tires the people here are just over the top in every way. To make matters worse 80% of people in AZ aren't from AZ but come here complain and try to take and change everything and alienate the mexicans and indians that have lived here for centuries. Just like California does with Oregon, a few hundred thousand rich and influential people move in and change everything to suit their needs."

Last edited by observer53; 05-28-2012 at 01:07 PM.. Reason: fixed broken quote tags
 
Old 05-28-2012, 11:17 AM
 
Location: Southern Arizona
8,963 posts, read 23,224,801 times
Reputation: 9413
I have but one question for you, AndyAMG . . .

If Tucson is as bad as you claim . . . why did it take you five years to leave?

No Shrink here, however, it is fairly obvious your "bitterness" runs far deeper than anything associated with Tucson. Over the years I have lived in a number of places from coast to coast and, believe me, NONE have been perfect. Just for the record, I lived in Portland and disliked many points but I was always able to find and appreciate the positives. Unfortunately, not as many positives as negatives so I quietly relocated without excessive and immature bashing or negativity.

Thank you for "JUST GOT BACK FROM TUCSON FOR THE LAST TIME"
 
Old 05-28-2012, 12:12 PM
 
40 posts, read 75,564 times
Reputation: 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by CH14 View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by AndyAMG View Post
But knowing Tucson's average resident they don't care, and will say don't let the door hit you on the way out. Which will prove my point.
When you talk about the avg resident like this in an earlier post, most think you would be better suited back in Portland. Earlier post of yours last year:

"I lived in Tucson, AZ for 5 years, Tucson people are very wierd, it has no identity and nothing going for it. The old white retirees are downright nasty, and complain about everything, drive awful, are just over the top racist, always want something for nothing are anti-everything, openly gun totoing paranoid lunatics with old trcuks with 7 inch lifts and 33" tires the people here are just over the top in every way. To make matters worse 80% of people in AZ aren't from AZ but come here complain and try to take and change everything and alienate the mexicans and indians that have lived here for centuries. Just like California does with Oregon, a few hundred thousand rich and influential people move in and change everything to suit their needs."
Sweet! Racists driving around in old trucks with 7 inch lifts toting guns sounds just like home. All kidding aside, I hope I can grow to like Tucson when I move to town. Hopefully it isn't so bad

Last edited by observer53; 05-28-2012 at 01:08 PM.. Reason: fixed broken quote tag
 
Old 05-28-2012, 07:23 PM
 
1,424 posts, read 2,313,167 times
Reputation: 810
Great post AndyAMG. There's so many things wrong with Tucson it's a wonder it grew at all. Of course that's over. Air traffic continues to drop also. Let's throw in a few more: (1) bitter arguments over Mexican studies in TUSD and poor schools in general (2) representation of the likes of Raul Grijavla and 'let's boycott AZ' (3) the horrible road conditions (4) the use of **2** left turn lanes as a poor excuse for lack of a cross town freeway (5) poor wages (6) little in the way of citizen engagement (7) freeways and roads strewn with litter (8) terrible decision to locate the ballpark on the south end of town instead of downtown.
 
Old 05-29-2012, 01:35 AM
Status: "Imagining a nice, cool lake" (set 5 days ago)
 
Location: 876 miles south of 9200 ft
4,515 posts, read 5,879,056 times
Reputation: 6639
In my humble opinion, as a transplant from Colorado, Tucson isn't the only city with problems. My former city, Colorado Springs, has many of the same issues: Military bases (several), no crosstown freeways (I-25 is N/S on the very west side of the city), use of **2** left turn lanes, spotty citizen engagement, lack of leadership from the Mayor to the city council, University (several) town, uber religious and conservative which is a problem for some people, as it is for the main school district which also has curriculum issues due to a conservative school board; and roads poorly maintained in snow storms. Those are just a few of the complaints, but they sure sound similar to Tucsons. Maybe it just isn't so great anywhere, so one needs to have a positive attitude and try to enjoy where they are.
 
Old 05-29-2012, 02:00 AM
 
1,971 posts, read 2,086,061 times
Reputation: 2154
It depends on your expectations. I went into Tucson thinking it was going to be a desert hell hole with a lot of those crazy tinfoil hat, I believe in aliens/conspiracies/angels type people. It definitely is not like that, and I was surprised to find that I really liked the area. It's got a lame downtown, the roads are messed up and the job market is below average, but I did not get the feeling that there was no identity or nothing going for it. It is a town in the desert, which means it is bound to be kind of weird. If your house had gained value instead of lost it, would you still feel as negatively?

That said, it is not the greatest place for a mid career professional. Unless you have a specific career at the University or Raytheon the financial situation will probably not work out... i.e. you'll get paid so much less it won't be worth the lower housing costs.
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