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wingbert last won the day on June 5 2012

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  1. To paraphrase Yogi Berra, nobody drives on that street anymore, it's too crowded.
  2. This project appears to be something of a trend elsewhere as well - Return of the Neighborhood Market...
  3. It's kind of a shame. Welcome to Main Street U.S.A. at Amwayworld.
  4. I agree but I think it comes from people's perception that they weren't in it for the money but for altruistic service reasons. They feel as if their local organic kale grower just sold out to Cargill.
  5. So, you may be pleased or further dismayed to discover that even the BIG firms like Gensler in bigger metros like Washington DC are using these screens on their parking decks. Check out Gensler’s perforated and fritted glass facade for this building in Tysons, VA
  6. In other suburban news, at the old Forest Hills Inn there's earth moving equipment and lots of digging and such going on.
  7. Well, I'm sure it's not as simple and easy as I wish but it would be nothing short of beautiful if the city could eminent domain the bejayzus out of one or two of downtown's more high-profile property squatters, tear down their eyesores and build wonderful parking accommodations for my precious car. Make a joyful noise for the killing of three birds with one stone - reduce blight, provide parking, send a message that the city is through with playing the patsy.
  8. What is preventing a third party from coming into GR and building a nice big ramp somewhere? Is it the city not granting the proper approvals? Is it some sort of collusion between the Ellis family and city parking duopoly to keep out competition? Or is it simple economics that indicate that despite the appearance, the numbers just don't work at this time? I'm really curious. It seems from these articles that there are some individuals and businesses that are concerned about this perceived parking catastrophe on the horizon. Is anyone going out and trying to draw the attention of some external parking vendor to bring their expertise to this market and take advantage of the opportunity? If the situation is as bad as it appears, why isn't the free market solving for the issue?
  9. Apparently, when it comes to their own personal health care, the folks at the city would be completely satisfied if they went to a doctor complaining of knee pain when climbing stairs and the doctor's response was, "that's easy, avoid using stairs."
  10. It's basic economics that will do the harm in the long run. The idea that people have choices doesn't seem to have entered into the city's consideration. Sure, development downtown is going strong right now but so is development throughout the suburbs from Knapp Corners, Rivertown Parkway, and the M6 and Kalamazoo area to things like the redesign of downtown Ada. And do these places also offer? Seas of free parking. The perception that the city will cravenly and opportunistically wring every dollar it can from the public's need to find a parking place is what leads to the anger and frustration. This cavalier "take the bus," "ride a bike," "use the shuttle" dismissal of legitimate concerns smacks of an obtuse callousness on par with "let them eat cake". Besides, say everyone starting riding their bikes downtown. Where the hell are you going to conveniently park all those bikes?
  11. Welp, the tipping point for the suburban exodus appears to be closer than ever and the city wants to pretend everything is going to be okey dokey.
  12. Everything is fine. This is typical of renovation projects like this. It's going to be great and everyone will love it when it's done. #AlternativeFacts
  13. I'll second Public. Great food and a great staff.
  14. Balancing parking availability, parking rates, mass transit, etc. in conjunction with managing and encouraging positive growth trends for employment and residential opportunities takes a deft hand. Not to sound like a wet blanket, but between the entrenched provincial mindsets of some (let's put the ownership of the private downtown parking monopoly on the board of the city parking commission) and the Pollyanna-like optimism of others (bike lanes will fix our traffic problems!) it seems like a foregone conclusion that the city of Grand Rapids will continue to find ways to screw the pooch until all the steam is finally taken out of the current resurgence. I mean, this city sits by passively accommodating a property squatter like Azzar and closes a public sidewalk to "protect" pedestrians from his lack of investment in a crumbling building but when the owners of McKay Tower invest in some lighting that does nothing but add vibrancy to the downtown skyline the city can't move fast enough to jump all over them and shut that down. When your priorities are that screwed up it's difficult not to think the city is doomed.