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    Grand Rapids, MI

GRGyp's Achievements


Whistle-Stop (3/14)



  1. IMHO the killer for G.R. Ford is Lansing. A 60 mile drive to Lansing can save you $150 a ticket. That right there shows what a low cost carrier can do. I don't see much difference from taking a connector flight for GR to Detroit/Chicago than from Lansing to Detroit/Chicago, but doing so out of Grand Rapids adds about $150 to $200 a ticket, where out of Lansing it adds about $50.
  2. Most likely S or O scale. S scale the cars would be around a foot long. O scale around a foot and a half. Handy comparison chart for average car sizes: Z - 3 to 4 inches (rare to see) N - 5 inches (uncommon but will see occasionally) HO- 9 inches (most popular) S - 12 inches O - 18 inches G - 24+ inches (garden trains)
  3. After driving by this building for a couple a weeks (to avoid the traffic backup on both freeways) a thought came to me. Why not kill two birds with one stone. First take the first two or three stories of this building, and retrofit it for use as a new post office. Convert the following stories above the third floor to office space with possible condos on the top stories. Then wipe out the ugly concrete block house that sits along the river and convert it to a nice green space/walking plaza. Maybe tastefully extend the western portion of the old Rowe to interface with this area to allow for creation of shop space. The same could be done on the north side of the plaza to cover up the existance of the post office parking structure.
  4. But returning the river to it's natural state would probably improve the water quality. The dams in place actually add to the color of the river. The sixth street dam holds back the waterflow. Add in sunlight to mix with a slowdown in waterflow and natural sediments being carried from downstream will allow for more alge growth than if the river was freeflowing. Now compound the issue with fertilizer runoff from properties flanking the river. Even more food for the green stuff to grow on. As for my two cents worth, I actually like the development plans GR as doing currently with the Grand. I like the emphasis of putting the riverfront to recreational walks and parks over retail and commercial development. I remember being downtown in the mid-70's as a little lad, and that was a time where the river was truly being ignored. The 80's were the time where they started turning it around. Gillete bridge was coverted from auto traffic to a footbridge first, then the old rusting black railroad bridge was converted later to our lighted blue footbridge of today. (I can remember walking across the old railroad ties to cross the river back when the Ford Museum was dedicated. I actually bypassed the Secret Service pat down and screening that day by doing it! The fun things you could get away with back then as a young teen ) Beleive me when I say that in 20 years the river front has improve 1000%. To sum it up: Today you fish for trout, in the 70's it was carp.
  5. It depends what they do with medians in the parking lot. I know from environmental standards that big parking lots like that generate alot of heat from the sun warming the blacktop. If they truly are being lauded for environmental excellence, I expect that those medians will be filled with trees that can grow to sufficient height to keep the lot significantly shaded. The building itself maybe very green and environmentally friendly, but the parking lot and landscaping need to follow in the same concept to be truly "environmentally excellent". Exposed blacktop needs to be shaded, and landscaping needs to be designed to minimize water use. So they need plenty of trees in the parking lot and a minimal use of large grass lawn areas that would require daily watering.
  6. Given the choice between an petroleum based plastic bag and a wood based paper bag, I fing myself requesting paper a lot more lately. Lucky for me I like bananas...
  7. Somewhere in the range 1900 and 1914 is my best guess. I base this on the fact that the railroads on the map are marked Pere Marquette, Lake Shore & Michigan Southern, and Grand Rapids & Indiana. The Pere Marquette line was originally the Chicago & West Michigan RR before a merger with two other railways created the Pere Marquette in 1900. The GR&I started out in 1854 until it was absorbed into Pennsylvania RR in 1918. The LS&MS started out in 1869 until it was absorbed into the NY Central RR in 1914. So the Pere Marquette dates the map as no earlier than 1900. The lack of the PRR and NYC being listed strongly suggests that it's earlier than 1915. Very nice piece of history you have there!
  8. River structures from left to right. Truss bridge - Railroad bridge for the old G.R. & I (At least I think it was built for the G.R. & I. If not, it's the Chicago & West Michigan RR that became part of the Pere Marquette/C&O/CSX system.) Truss bridge - Fulton St bridge (This bridge must not have lasted long. 1890's maps don't show it, and the current open spandrel bridge was built in 1927.) Truss bridge - G.R. & I RR bridge Truss - Second railroad bridge? (First thought: Interesting, because I can't find any maps with this bridge on it. 1890's with a gap to a 1914 map. At most it lasted 20 years, or one of the maps I saw is seriously wrong.) (Second thought: Could the rock pile in the river be the remains of a footing for this bridge?) Arch bridge - Pearl St bridge Arch bridge - Bridge St bridge Line in the river - Dam at the head of the canal system Faint bridge beyond - Leonard St bridge.
  9. "Now mother, this downward trending red line represnts the number of a**l rapes downtown. Notice how it corresponds to the downward trending blue line representing the number of facial gunshot wounds..."
  10. Because why fill all that space up with nice buildings and trees, when you can have 40 acres of nice flat asphalt instead?
  11. I like the lighting effect surrounding the crane. Like it's a gift from God stepping out from the heavenly light...
  12. And to think, several years back they would of just been potential victims...
  13. Was it a possible store location for the old Bavarian Village ski shop franchise out of Detroit?
  14. I'm glad they never went with that design. It looks like they were trying to recreate "Grab Corners" by cutting off Monroe at Lyon and forcing traffic to turn and go to Campau. While the plan would have created a huge pedestrian area in the middle of DT, I think the traffic problems it would have caused around that area would have discouraged foot traffic from entering that area. Plus I prefer road traffic along side foot traffic in a downtown setting, provided that their is ample sidewalk space. The city feels more alive that way. *sniff* The old "Hall of Justice". I still can't believe they tore it all down and evicted Superman, Wonder Woman, and the rest of the Justice League.
  15. Is that the slant on the floor you are talking about? I thought the bottom floors were parking garage. You'd need that slope for drainage.
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