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JTG

What do you love about downtown?

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What do you love about downtown? From the recent developments, to memories decades old. What makes downtown Orlando so incredibly special to so many people near and so very far?

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I been watching these forums with great interest and finally, this is my first post. This is an interesting question and one I would love to know the answer to myself as I moved to Orlando just two years ago from NYC. A place that probably has one of the riches and most unique culture and history. However, I have noticed the springing up of towers downtown and the desire to turn it into a small metropolus which is very comforting to us that enjoy the urban lifestyle. But one thing I have noticed is... you can have all the buildings you want, the shops you want, the resturants you want, but without history or something that sets it apart from other cities, it will just be a hollow city. So if anyone can reply, for a newbe like myself, what does make downtown unique and special... what history does it hold on to, and what about that history will the future preserve as we see this new growth and change?

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Welcome to the area and to our Forum. I found that website about Orlando's history tonight surfing and looking for pictures of downtown in the early days. Granted, Orlando does not have the architectural and social history and culture that NYC and its 5 boroughs have, it is still steeped with alot of interesting history and has alot to offer. If you look at my thread on Orlando history you will find that link and if you follow it and look back, it shows alot of buildings that still exist today. Unfortunately, Orlando learned far later about preserving certain districts and buildings but only after we lost quite a few significant structures along the way. However quite a few remain and if you go out and party downtown chances are you are doing it at a building that is alot older than you think. Orlando has a very vibrant downtown nightlife especially on the weekends. It can hold its own against any other city in the state except Miami/South Florida. Now some would say that's not an image that we want for Orlando. Well i say [email protected]#%$. However, this is changing as alot of new condominiums develop in downtown and the demographics change. IT can either enhance the diversity of downtown (i.e. Various types of nightlife for all ages, upscale like Hue, Wine Bar, YBORs, and dance clubs like Chillers, Antigua, BarOrlando, and than regular bars like Scruffys, Kates, Caseys ) OR kill the nightlife of downtown. Hopefully it will enhance it. Now there are more and more things to do than ever before and if the culture continues to expand and diversify like adding concerts, plays, restaurants and retail, coffeeshops, longer hours of business, oh and MASS TRANSIT and anything else that would be cool and I didn't mention ....than buddy this city will be great. The key is CULTURE, so if you are from a place like NYC, Boston etc. this maybe hard to compare. However if you like a more laid back feel but still have some smidgen of urbanity than i think Orlando will suffice and actually get better and better in a few years. I know i left out a few things and sorry about writing a book but thats my 5 dollars worth. :)

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The main thing I like about downtown its character at night. The place may be sleepy hollow by day by friday and saturday nights (and other nights to a lesser extent) it practically becomes a block party. I love that downtown is the local scene for nightlife even with places like Downtown Disney and CityWalk in town. I love how Orange Avenue turns into Ocean Drive with cars bumper to bumper, windows down, music blasting, with people on their way to have a good time, or simply with people watching others have a good time. I love how people who are out and partying downtown are mostly out to genuinely let loose and not b.s. so much or act fake like what can be common in other big cities <cough>miaminewyork<cough>. After spending the last 4 years in Boston for college, I love how I can go out downtown in February and still see girls wearing tennis skirts the size of bandaids and I don't have to wait for 40 minutes in the freezing cold while a bouncer stands under a heat lamp just to get into a club (I'm sure Prahaboheme can attest to these two). I love that many places don't charge covers, or at least not before it gets late, and drinks are so much cheaper than the big city average. Likewise, I love I can find parking and not pay $20 for it. I love the cultural diversity in the crowds that go out. I love that every friend of mine who has visited from out of town has been amazed by the bar and club scene downtown, even if they're coming from Boston, New York, Miami, DC, wherever.

But probably most of all, I love the potential that downtown has.

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I love the diversity. I love how the poorest people in town live blocks away from the wealthiest and how there are homeless shelters in walking distance from five-star restaurants. That's something you'll never see in the burbs.

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^ ORLANDO, Fla. -- A man was shot and killed in front of around 100 people as they were leaving downtown Orlando's nightclubs early Thursday morning.

The victim was walking down Central Boulevard after leaving the Tabu nightclub, when a man jumped out of a sport utility vehicle and shot him, WESH 2 News reported.

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^ What was the theme at Tabu nightclub last night? Let me guess...was it hip hop/rap night? That is an element that we dont want downtown. There are places in the burbs for wannabe rapper/gangsta shootouts like Carribean Beach Club at Pine Hills and 50.

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Pardon, my candor, but bullcrap. That's what makes a city a city. This isn't The Truman Show, it's life. And no -- I'm not saying that "it's ok" to kill people or that I want to live around stuff like that. But it comes with the terrority -- be it Downtown Orlando or Downtown Pleasantville.

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Versace was murdered on his doorstep on Miami's (and one of the world's) most fashionable/recognizable streets, Ocean Drive. Does that really change anything about it? No. Violence can happen anywhere, and statistics show that in most cases violence is premeditated, not random. So it sucks that something would happen on Central in downtown Orlando, but does that really doesn't change anything about the place and what it means, so forth? No, not really. Unless of course this sort of thing continues to happen and then people start going elsewhere.

anyway, I think my favorite thing about downtown Orlando is the new energy I feel down there when I'm in town. It really does seem to be more and more vibrant as the months go on, turning it from a nighttime destination into a 24 hour city. Also, on a somewhat random sidenote, the last three times I've been in town, the Orlando Museum of Art has held great traveling exhibitions, which I've been impressed with. I like the Loch Haven Park/Leu Gardens area.

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^ I liked how you start out serious and than end it all lightheartedly. The Versace case was premeditation and last night was most likely a random senseless act of stupidity and it doesn't change the way i feel about downtown. I feel downtown is fairly safe and always has a strong police presence on any night. They will catch this "rocket scientist" fairly quickly as there were over 100 witnesses per WESH and the fact that he was driving a late model Royal Blue Chevy Impala with "lamborghini" type doors and spinning rims. One word...........Natural Selection.

p.s. I hope he's familiar with Jeb's 10-20-LIFE

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Forgive me all, i woke up on the wrong side of the bed this morning and have just been in a foul mood all day long. Sorry :sick: I'll try and lighten up a bit.

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Hey guys, thanks for the warm introduction. I see Orlando is on a tread to becomming something big for Florida, and that's a good thing. Politics drives everything I've come to realize. And the mood I hear not only from our mayor, but also from most people in general is that they want this city to grow. Growth coming in the form there most cities like to grow. Desity, vibrancy, basically... street magic! It's a beautiful thing. And I think Orlando can do it and still preserve the quiet natural areas that also make it a getaway for us NY folks.

I love the combination of a small downtown with lights and people on the streets, and at the same time high tech parks with family entertainment, gorgeous weather (although can get tiring at timeswithout seasons, :D ) and a new mix of diversity.

I will never give up my NY heritage, but I definitely want to stay close to both areas, as they both provide a different flavor we all probably need sometimes... although I see them closely merging as time goes by with Orlando's rapid change to Urbanizm

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Hey, I went to downtown this satuday night and WOW!!! I had no idea it was this packed with people, life, lights, music, HOTDOGS! PIZZA! Bars! clubs! Lounges! Amazing to see. Looks a little like miami flavor for central florida. And the women!!! Way to go Orlando!

I think we still need some billiard clubs, theaters( although I hear that's comming soon :thumbsup: ), maybe an urban bowling alley, more comedy clubs, and a cool 3d arcade like in Times Square. Diverse entertainment! Wink wink to all you would be investors... ;)

I hope they do the same vitalization to uptown also. I drove around there and boy, was it dead!

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Good to see that you experienced what Orlando has to offer. Uptown is pretty dead, though there are some fun bars/lounges around Lake Ivanhoe. They are mostly neighborhood joints, which I find pretty cool. Kuhn had originally said that he was planning on putting a bowling alley in the Benchmark, don't know if thats off at this point.

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Hey, I went to downtown this satuday night and WOW!!! I had no idea it was this packed with people, life, lights, music, HOTDOGS! PIZZA! Bars! clubs! Lounges! Amazing to see. Looks a little like miami flavor for central florida. And the women!!! Way to go Orlando!

I think we still need some billiard clubs, theaters( although I hear that's comming soon  ), maybe an urban bowling alley, more comedy clubs, and a cool 3d arcade like in Times Square. Diverse entertainment! Wink wink to all you would be investors... 

I hope they do the same vitalization to uptown also. I drove around there and boy, was it dead!

Were very much heading in the right direction when it comes to vibrancy, but there are stil things we can do to make it better, such as drop the 2:00am last call, and implicate more daytime oriented activities. But nightlife is really our strong point and should be improved upon over the next couple of years.

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Excuse me, but why exactly do you need to drop 2:00 AM last call? Most places in the civilized world have 2:00 AM last call, and you're lucky they don't make the clubs close at 2:00 AM.

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Excuse me, but why exactly do you need to drop 2:00 AM last call?  Most places in the civilized world have 2:00 AM last call, and you're lucky they don't make the clubs close at 2:00 AM.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Why not drop it?

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I know I'm a fuddy duddy but for one, there will be a lot more resendents who might be sleeping. Not all will be at the clubs. This wasn't a problem when only the homeless were affected.

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I've dealt with problems of people activity living in a downtown, and people actively partying in a downtown, and I for one would not be advocating later drinking hours. One good thing is that the clubs do not close at 2:00 AM, which is required in other parts of the country, and that is a mess when you have to "push" everyone out of the clubs.

IE> there are more problems with this proposal with the more residents that are attracted to Downtown. Just look to the SOMA district in San Francisco if you need an example.

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There are numerous other cities, with all-night drinking laws, and are not dramatically affected by this. But the point is for Orlando to be a 24 hour activity center. Im sorry, if you dont go to nightclubs I just feel this is a city, and to diversify and make our city a 24 hour city you need to lift restrictions on drinking which is why people go downtown for late night entertainment. (people dont go to nightclubs and bars to drink soda at 3:00am) Sure you could take many cities with restrictions and say look at how they are, but you could take numerous others without strict club and drinking restrictions and say look at them now. What we need to do is make ourselves different and give ourselves an advantage over the suburbs. Maybe in downtown Altamonte Springs you could worry about waking people, but 24 hour activity is what makes urban areas different. Those same people you worry about waking probably arent contributing to the atmosphere at 2:00am.

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What exactly is the difference between drunk drivers at 2 am or at 4 am? If anything, less people will be out at 4 am. Oh, before I forget, I am 24 and still go out quite often. Driving late at night isn't that dangerous if you are AWARE that other drivers may be drunk, and the only people driving during those hours are young kids going out to clubs, etc. So again, what is the difference between hours? Yes, I could understand if people were leaving the clubs at 6 am during rush hour!

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