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spenser1058

How Not To Run A Major Florida City

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It was Election Day in St. Pete yesterday, with a vote for "The Lens" and a mayoral primary.

 

The Lens, a replacement for the city's fading landmark pier, went down to defeat, with 63% voting against the project:

 

http://www.tampabay.com/news/localgovernment/st-petersburg-voters-decisively-reject-the-lens/2138664

 

Perhaps not unrelated, incumbent mayor Bill Foster squeaked by his nearest rival, 41-39% and will face a runoff.

 

St. Pete is also facing the possible loss of the Rays to Hillsborough County across the Bay.

 

The takeaway for those of us in Orlando is to appreciate how much more effective our leadership seems to be when it comes to major projects. St. Pete was late to switch to a strong-mayor form of government and it shows. Meanwhile, Orlando's mayors, including incumbent Buddy Dyer, seem able to move not only the city but often the entire central Florida region toward desired goals with much more success.

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St. Pete has been noted as an up and coming competitor to Orlando on the boards here, so I was intrigued to see this report in the St. Pete Times about their latest BANANA/NIMBY problem). Thankfully, I don't think we've seen anything this silly in O-town for a while:

http://www.tampabay.com/news/localgovernment/why-it-could-cost-35-million-to-cancel-st-petersburgs-pier-project/2307331 

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Good news that the citizens of St Pete had the good taste to vote down that absurd looking excuse for a municipal pier design called "The Lens".

They should try to get a measure on the ballot to rebuild exactly the way it was, the iconic and perfectly good pier they tore down.

Or better yet, to build something that actually resembles a pier and which actually serves some sort of purpose, other than being a pretentious looking appendage jutting out into the bay for people to walk around on and do nothing.

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The previous Pier was also much hated until everyone got used to it. Heaven help us, the slings and arrows directed at Eola's Centennial Fountain over the years but, with time, it became the symbol of the City on everything from the flag to the street signs. To me, it's more a question of once something's been decided as a community, we get behind it and move on. I may not have been thrilled about a new arena for America's biggest homophobe or a willingness to allow a soccer stadium both to butt in line ahead of a completed PAC, but once it was decided I just redoubled my support to make sure we come out OK in the end. As it turns out, OCSC mostly paid their own way and Mother Nature will take care of the homophobe and Phase 2 of DPAC will happen 15 years late and probably be more popular than we dared hope. Life is good in The City Beautiful.

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4 hours ago, spenser1058 said:

The previous Pier was also much hated until everyone got used to it. Heaven help us, the slings and arrows directed at Eola's Centennial Fountain over the years but, with time, it became the symbol of the City on everything from the flag to the street signs. To me, it's more a question of once something's been decided as a community, we get behind it and move on. I may not have been thrilled about a new arena for America's biggest homophobe or a willingness to allow a soccer stadium both to butt in line ahead of a completed PAC, but once it was decided I just redoubled my support to make sure we come out OK in the end. As it turns out, OCSC mostly paid their own way and Mother Nature will take care of the homophobe and Phase 2 of DPAC will happen 15 years late and probably be more popular than we dared hope. Life is good in The City Beautiful.

This is true for a number of different monuments and significant buildings for many cities around the world. The most famous example probably being Paris, they absolutely hated the Eiffel Tower when it was built. Now it's the national symbol for France and a top tourist must-see.

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