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Old 08-25-2015, 07:09 PM
 
Location: the Great Lakes states
801 posts, read 2,554,698 times
Reputation: 557

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Quote:
Originally Posted by JakeBauerCLE View Post
Don't try and make it more than it is, okay? I understand you value high density, busy, walkable, urban environments with "diversity" of the racial and economic variety, if so Chicago would be a good spot for you or Oak Park or the southern half of Evanston if you wanna stay in a more suburban community. The people who choose to live in NWI don't want that though, because if they did they would live in the city of the aforementioned suburbs.
Many people in NWI do want that, but not enough municipal leaders are listening.

One of the reasons why high school and college graduates leave NWI is because no developer or municipal government has truly committed to a modern urban blueprint: a vibrant, transit-connected, walkable, somewhat dense downtown, that has access to restaurants, bars, shopping, parks. Another facet to it is renovated or new, affordable studio and 1-bedroom apartments, and entry-level condos and starter homes.

Valpo is getting there, and I think in the next 10-20 years Valpo will have that blueprint fully in place.

For someone starting their career and working in NWI, it isn't a reasonable possibility to move to Oak Park, Evanston, Naperville, or the places named. Make NWI attractive to young people. There also have to be employers who hire college grads, and there has to be opportunities for higher education. When these things are in place, people will stay.
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Old 08-25-2015, 07:20 PM
 
Location: the Great Lakes states
801 posts, read 2,554,698 times
Reputation: 557
Quote:
Originally Posted by JakeBauerCLE View Post
Best thing that can be done is to annex the folks in the Merrillville school district and a CP address into Merrillville, and then significantly up police presence on the border and enforce more stringent regulations on rentals and apartments.
I don't really "like" the "aggressive policing" approach and philosophy, but I am a little surprised that Merrillville didn't try something like that Jake mentioned.

As examples of what I mean by that, is that when you drive into Palos Heights, you know you are in place that doesn't mess around, and there is usually a squad car sitting right near the "Welcome to Palos Heights" sign that will be happy to tail you if you drive 1 mile per hour over the speed limit.

Same thing in Upper Arlington, Ohio... La Grange, Illinois, and any other suburb that settled on that philosophy.

Maybe it is the taxation and that Merrillville doesn't have funds to have a police presence... or maybe whoever was at the helm was a little sleepy a couple decades ago, and didn't realize they were going to have a problem. Or, they truly believed in a laissez-faire free market.

Regardless, government probably could have done more than they did to raise Merrillville's status... in ethical ways... and in some ways the drift of crime and problems was probably inevitable just due to the market (affordability and location.)
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Old 08-26-2015, 01:54 PM
 
Location: Cochise County, AZ
1,399 posts, read 1,241,515 times
Reputation: 3052
Quote:
Originally Posted by artemis View Post
K mart has never been at 61st & Broadway.
Sure, sure and next you'll tell me there never was a Turn-Style at the other corner of 61st & Broadway. I suppose you'd also say there wasn't a Kiddieland or a Dairy Queen at 61st and Broadway either (before the K-mart was built). Ultra was originally built on the other side of Crossroads Plaza (it faced north) and later moved into the old K-mart building.
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Old 08-27-2015, 08:46 AM
 
2,888 posts, read 6,708,607 times
Reputation: 2147
Quote:
Originally Posted by Deelighted View Post
Sure, sure and next you'll tell me there never was a Turn-Style at the other corner of 61st & Broadway. I suppose you'd also say there wasn't a Kiddieland or a Dairy Queen at 61st and Broadway either (before the K-mart was built). Ultra was originally built on the other side of Crossroads Plaza (it faced north) and later moved into the old K-mart building.
Yes, there was a TurnStyle at that corner, I used to shop there. When I was a kid, there was a small airport there too.
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Old 08-27-2015, 09:38 PM
 
2,433 posts, read 3,308,772 times
Reputation: 2644
Quote:
Originally Posted by summer22 View Post
Many people in NWI do want that, but not enough municipal leaders are listening.

One of the reasons why high school and college graduates leave NWI is because no developer or municipal government has truly committed to a modern urban blueprint: a vibrant, transit-connected, walkable, somewhat dense downtown, that has access to restaurants, bars, shopping, parks. Another facet to it is renovated or new, affordable studio and 1-bedroom apartments, and entry-level condos and starter homes.

Valpo is getting there, and I think in the next 10-20 years Valpo will have that blueprint fully in place.

For someone starting their career and working in NWI, it isn't a reasonable possibility to move to Oak Park, Evanston, Naperville, or the places named. Make NWI attractive to young people. There also have to be employers who hire college grads, and there has to be opportunities for higher education. When these things are in place, people will stay.
Valpo is indeed "getting there" but I think it is just too far from the city for many. I think the real sleeper in the region is Hobart...its downtown is very picturesque, walkable and urban, situated on a beautiful lake. It's location adjacent to 80/94/65 is ideal...the only problem is its downtown is somewhat hidden. But if it can reach a critical mass, look for Hobart to surprise a lot of folks over the coming years. The city is investing heavily in the downtown and the results are obvious. And with all due resect to Valpo, no city in the region has quite the hometown pride of Hobart.

Having said that...a region wide approach to transit, starting with a North/South spine along broadway, ending at 30...and two East/West routes along 30 and 6 would do wonders for mobility in the region terminating in Valpo and Chesterton respectively. With modern technology, buses could become much more attractive, better spending 30 minutes on your tablet than US 30 traffic.
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Old 08-30-2015, 11:22 PM
 
Location: the Great Lakes states
801 posts, read 2,554,698 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by midwest1 View Post
Valpo is indeed "getting there" but I think it is just too far from the city for many. I think the real sleeper in the region is Hobart...its downtown is very picturesque, walkable and urban, situated on a beautiful lake. It's location adjacent to 80/94/65 is ideal...the only problem is its downtown is somewhat hidden. But if it can reach a critical mass, look for Hobart to surprise a lot of folks over the coming years. The city is investing heavily in the downtown and the results are obvious. And with all due resect to Valpo, no city in the region has quite the hometown pride of Hobart.

Having said that...a region wide approach to transit, starting with a North/South spine along broadway, ending at 30...and two East/West routes along 30 and 6 would do wonders for mobility in the region terminating in Valpo and Chesterton respectively. With modern technology, buses could become much more attractive, better spending 30 minutes on your tablet than US 30 traffic.
I like Hobart. Certainly it is possible and it would be great for NWI... the location is excellent. And the new high school also is a plus. What have they been doing downtown? I haven't been to Hobart in a while, and I'm not up-to-date on the progress... fill me in! Just curious too, what is the nearest Ivy Tech campus to Hobart?

A bus rapid transit line down US 30 from Valparaiso to US 41, and then another bus northbound through Highland on 41... that would be nice. I could also see a successful spur going south to Crown Point. A north line up Broadway through Gary could work, but would that be a liability? If it was an express line with few stops (which in practice would be more like a train) I could see it being possible. I would be concerned about crime if it made local stops along Broadway north of 61st.

I still think Valpo is further ahead than most NWI cities, except maybe for Crown Point and the towns along 41. The location does make it inconvenient. But, they're not having any problem retaining population or growing. The growth probably will have its limits. I think Chesterton is not unreasonably far for Chicago commuters, but the extra 15 minutes south to Valpo makes the drive feel more like an ordeal.
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Old 08-31-2015, 11:43 AM
 
2,888 posts, read 6,708,607 times
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The nearest Ivy Tech is in Glen Park.

There is one in Valpo too.
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Old 02-11-2016, 04:00 PM
 
Location: Valparaiso, IN
275 posts, read 437,515 times
Reputation: 203
Quote:
Originally Posted by valpofan11 View Post
Then as I have said, why not just try to redevelop Merrillville in a more vibrant place with mixed use, new urbanism style sustainable development. Unless we all just want to add greenhouse gas/carbon emissions to the environment, then redevelopment of suburbs like Merrillville will be necessary. The problem in Northwest Indiana is not enough people want the best for the whole region, or they simply don't act to make the entire region better. Sprawl and racism have made the region worse. Let's try to make the older areas better, along with the newer ones without a ton more of car dependent suburban sprawl.


Study to examine fixes for U.S. 30 around I-65 | Transportation | nwitimes.com


Not sure if I agree with the putting of band aids on this infrastructure problem. I suppose band aids are better than letting it bleed though.


Let's just get the suture kit out already or at least staple it.
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Old 02-16-2016, 07:53 AM
 
2,433 posts, read 3,308,772 times
Reputation: 2644
Quote:
Originally Posted by summer22 View Post
I like Hobart. Certainly it is possible and it would be great for NWI... the location is excellent. And the new high school also is a plus. What have they been doing downtown? I haven't been to Hobart in a while, and I'm not up-to-date on the progress... fill me in! l.
The downtown has been undergoing major infrastructure investment. New sewers might not be as trendy as art galleries but it is vital to future investment. Id be mire likely to invest in an older district that has nice new plumbing.

More good news, downtown Hobart earned National Historic Status.

http://www.nwitimes.com/news/local/l...15ef362ff.html

Last edited by midwest1; 02-16-2016 at 08:17 AM..
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Old 01-06-2018, 01:42 AM
 
1 posts, read 559 times
Reputation: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by valpofan11 View Post
Since many of you on the forum have negative things to say about the town of Merrillville, I wanted to get your opinions on what you think town administrators/developers should do to make the community the best it can possibly be.

I think this inner-ring suburb can be a fantastic place in the future. I do think that many of the vacant/for sale buildings along north Broadway should be torn down and the sites should be repurposed for sustainable development/new urbanist type developments. The urban planning now and in the future of Merrillville will be a tough challenge in order to be environmentally responsible and sustainable. Very hard to reverse the sprawl cycle. Better mass transit will need to be introduced in not only Merrillville, but all around NWI. The biggest development project in the United States' future is retrofitting the suburbs to become more sustainable, and I think Merrillville, if done right, can lead NWI in this. Sprawl is unhealthy all around. In my opinion, Merrillville can become "tomorrow's today" so to speak, so what are your thoughts on making the Pirate community a great place to live, work, and play?
The best or maybe even only way sadly to make Merrillville good is if got a large business comeback. I mean a complete re-vision. Kinda what happened with Dean White at Holiday Star in the 70s. The way I interpret what I just wrote is a theme park, one much larger than Six Flags Great America in Gurnee. I also think if that happens Southlake Mall should get an expansion, making it the largest mall in terms of leasable land in the entire state of Indiana. As for a location for the theme park, just south of the mall on Mississippi St. has been for sale for some time. Now, there are problems with that though. The land currently is owned by 3 different people. I think the 3 own 350 or so acres each. The next thing that should go down is a complete redo of the town's storefronts. Make is look more like Orland Park or Oakbrook. The schools in Merrillville also could use some tender love and care. The only problem I see with this is that people from other towns would leave there towns making them ghetto places that aren't necessarily good places to live. But if Merrillville comes out with a large theme park, I think it should be run by Cedar Fair, who own Cedar Point and King's Island. If the park is anything like Cedar Point or better, Merrillville will become a must-visit for Chicagoland goers. If better than Cedar Point, it may even become the best park in the entire world.
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