bwithers1

2015 mayoral race public opinion polling has started

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I received my first telephone survey last night conducting public opinion polling for the 2015 mayoral and sheriff candidates.  Yikes!  That's what I get for being a "super voter." 

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After 127 years, it's time for a responsible Republican Mayor for a change...

...make that Conservative.

Edited by fieldmarshaldj
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After 127 years, it's time for a responsible Republican Mayor for a change......make that Conservative.

We've had "conservative" mayors, just not (ugh) replusivecans. Fulton, Boner, and Purcell were prudent and fiscally conservative. Bredesen wasn't a wild spender, and focused on developments that we all should take pride in, most notably the library system. Dean has shown vision, and the big ticket items reflect a backlog created by the lesser depression, and the boom we are currently experiencing. Carpe diem! What we haven't had is a racist mayor, nor a tea bagger. Given the state of the Davidson Co. and state GOP/Tea party, we should hope that the run of responsible, reasonable, and visionary mayors continues.

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The last remotely "Conservative" Mayor was Beverly Briley (1963-75), that if only because he endorsed liberal Republican Nixon for President in 1972 over the ultraleftist McGovern. Mayors in Nashville since have gotten more left-wing with each successive election, unfortunately, from Fulton onwards. Nothing "fiscally" let alone socially "Conservative" about any of them, mostly spendthrifts. Not even San Francisco, Detroit, Chicago or New York has gone on that long with one party in control of the Mayorship as Nashville has.

I don't know what a "ugh replusivecan" is, must be some bizarre frothing-at-the-mouth creation in Huffinglue land. As for a "tea bagger" Mayor, well, I've not grilled any of the former Mayors or current aspirants on their dysfunctional sexual proclivities. As for racists, it appears Councilman Jerry Maynard may try to corner that vote if he runs. Now, again, what we haven't had is a visionary Conservative Tea Partier in that office, which is so badly needed after that 127 years of one party rule, one whom is more in line with our responsible Conservative legislature, one of the best, brightest and most successful in the nation (and the reason why so many productive individuals are leaving insolvent and decayed Democrat-run states behind to move here).

Just as an aside, I've never had much of a high opinion of either the Mayors or the Metro Council over my lifetime, if only because my part of Nashville was either ignored or used as a proverbial dumping ground for the last 4 decades+. When Dean first ran against Bob Clement, this area overwhelmingly went for Clement. It's a simple response as to what Dean (or Purcell, or Bredesen) has done for my area, and the answer is "nothing."

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I am, admittedly, pretty ignorant about the state of things in Nashville outside of the urban development realm, but from this outsiders perspective, things appear to be going pretty damn well in Nashville right now.  It seems to me that continuing in this general direction would be beneficial, no?

Edited by BnaBreaker
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^Well, it depends upon where you live in the city. Some areas are doing well, and obviously, some aren't. My area hit its apex in the late '80s and has been downhill since. 25 years ago when I was a teenager, I was worried about the rapid decline of downtown. I do not expect a similar renaissance for Antioch anytime soon. And, yes, I do hold city leadership responsible for that. Metro as an experiment in consolidated government failed us spectacularly.

 

I have to add as well that even if we elected a GOP Mayor, say Lee Beaman, unless he had a specific plan for our area, I doubt the current dynamics would be changed much. Had we been our own incorporated community with strong and committed leadership, we might've had a different situation today.

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I am, admittedly, pretty ignorant about the state of things in Nashville outside of the urban development realm, but from this outsiders perspective, things appear to be going pretty damn well in Nashville right now.  It seems to me that continuing in this general direction would be beneficial, no?

Things are going extremely well for the development community.  The Planning Department pushed through revisions to the lot subdivision requirements that blocked out areas of the city as "evolving" - including my area of East Nashville - and promptly removed the community character requirement that considers what surrounding lot street frontage is like.  So there is now now holds barred in my neighborhood for lot subdivisions.  So they can make a lot like 25 feet wide in some cases.  With 5' setbacks, you will have houses that are 15' wide.  I'm ok with that in a true townhome development.  But quite a few developers are totally unscrupulous and are putting horrendous crap in our neighborhoods.  Now developers are targeting historic homes on large lots in my neighborhood and blatantly telling the owners that if they purchase the house that will scrap it and place multiple homes on there.  Density is OK in some spots.  But most of this is the opposite of good urban planning.  I can give you a tour sometime if you want to see it.  It seems like lately the bad architects are winning, and the neighborhoods are losing.  Now neighbors next door to these monstrosities are also selling their homes to the same bad developers because this crap next door to you will block anyone from ever buying your home, and it will block out all of your light and you can't have houseplants or a garden.  People are pissed to the point that I worry about social unrest.  And no, I am not in Green Hills.

 

I will share that what I listed as my top concern for the city was runaway spending by the administration and the council.

Edited by bwithers1
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Here are a couple of article that may relate to this thread. From GAC media. This is the results of a poll done by Lipscomb. The first is the direction Nashville is heading and the second is a poll done for the next Mayorial election.

 

http://gcanews.com/headlines.html#2

http://gcanews.com/headlines.html#3

 

Very interesting results. 

 

It does concern me that so many residents think this city is 'downtown focused' when there is so, so much more that needs to be done to downtown. I think it is a valid concern that so much attention is there, though (and for the record, I think a lot of residents outside of the core consider places like the Gulch, SoBro, and Midtown to be 'downtown'...so that probably doesn't help, either)...but I think it is partially the fault of the Dean administration because he has proposed so many big ticket projects in the area. 

 

I was a little surprised that Amp support was as high as it was (71%)...and not so shocked about the Sounds proposal (35% or so). That's very interesting. It seems like with that much support, the Amp should be a done deal, at least in some form. So why put the stadium on the fast track? Why not concentrate all the energy on 'fixing' the perception issues on the Amp so that could get underway (perhaps a few compromises wouldn't be a bad thing, so long as it doesn't kill the spirit of the project -- one solution could be to extend the dedicated BRT lane portion up Gallatin Rd a few miles, and change the 440 to St Thomas portion to BRT lite so it doesn't take away those precious traffic lanes.

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 ...Metro as an experiment in consolidated government failed us spectacularly...

 

Maybe I'm veering off topic, but do you think old suburbs like Madison and Antioch would have done better on their own?  Suburban development quickly raced past them and as isolated cities I think they would probably have ended up like some of the old suburbs around Chicago or St. Louis which have no tax base and no way to pull themselves out of the hole.  

 

I think a lot of the ring of development that is post-streetcar and pre-McMansion is headed for more trouble, even in places like Chicago where much of it is part of the city (population in Chicago is rising in the core but dropping in places like the SW side).  I'm not sure what can be done.

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Very interesting results. 

 

It does concern me that so many residents think this city is 'downtown focused' when there is so, so much more that needs to be done to downtown. I think it is a valid concern that so much attention is there, though (and for the record, I think a lot of residents outside of the core consider places like the Gulch, SoBro, and Midtown to be 'downtown'...so that probably doesn't help, either)...but I think it is partially the fault of the Dean administration because he has proposed so many big ticket projects in the area. 

 

I was a little surprised that Amp support was as high as it was (71%)...and not so shocked about the Sounds proposal (35% or so). That's very interesting. It seems like with that much support, the Amp should be a done deal, at least in some form. So why put the stadium on the fast track? Why not concentrate all the energy on 'fixing' the perception issues on the Amp so that could get underway (perhaps a few compromises wouldn't be a bad thing, so long as it doesn't kill the spirit of the project -- one solution could be to extend the dedicated BRT lane portion up Gallatin Rd a few miles, and change the 440 to St Thomas portion to BRT lite so it doesn't take away those precious traffic lanes.

I was pleased about the AMP support, I think the anti-AMP people just have a bigger megaphone.  And frankly, are the kind of people who are used to getting their way.

 

What I find a bit irritating is that the very people who say they want government run "like a business" oppose every investment in upscale downtown development, disney-fication of Broadway and everything else that translates into high property values, more tourism (and more affluent visitors)  and ultimately, more tax revenues for Metro.  But when you ask them what to do with the cash-bleeding dinosaur that is the fairgrounds, they're like, "But my daddy used to take me to the fairgrounds".  Where's the business logic?  

 

I'm a leftist, I want Metro to have lots of money to spend on services, and the way to do that is to bring in rich people-residents and visitors-and soak 'em.  You can lure them with food--I think the culinary scene in this town is doing wonders.  

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Neigeville2 wrote:

Maybe I'm veering off topic, but do you think old suburbs like Madison and Antioch would have done better on their own? Suburban development quickly raced past them and as isolated cities I think they would probably have ended up like some of the old suburbs around Chicago or St. Louis which have no tax base and no way to pull themselves out of the hole.

-----------

Sorry for the awkward formatting, the website reply function hasn't worked for me in some time. To answer your question, the answer is simply, I don't know for sure. I can only answer based on what has happened, and Metro has been a complete failure for Antioch.

Antioch as a booming suburban entity was doing quite well for about a 2-decade period (when Metro took little interest in it) from the '70s until the '90s. Had we been an independent entity in control of our own affairs, separate from the rest of the city, there is a good chance that the decline might've been halted. It was only when "open minded, tolerant and visionary" leaders downtown decided that our neck of the woods didn't meet their standards and specifications of utopia that we went downhill (from booming suburb to high crime butt of jokes) in less than a decade.

Of course, since those making the decisions don't live here, but in their usual insular bubbles, they didn't have to suffer the repercussions and be forced to live in the mess they made for us.

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Fmdj,

I'm sorry, but I have to disagree with you about Antioch and Metro.

I've got to agree with Neigeville2 in that Antioch was just a bystander in the rapid suburbanization of the mid-state area. I don't think any government could have done much of anything about the forces at work during those decades.

Don't get me wrong. It was a wonderful place to grow up. I treasure the memories of my mother walking me to Cole Elementary every morning (before the time of cross town busing) and I loved going trick-or-treating on Keeley Dr. But i watched as the town became diverse and intergrated and the second wave of "white flight" took its toll on the area.

Home values dove. My parents, who thought they had moved to their utopia were suddenly "underwater". Businesses closed. Hickory Hollow Mall went into "virus outbreak" mode.

But I don't think this has anything to do with any "social" changes that were happening at the time. I attribute it simply to poor urban design, which unfortunately, was the status quo of the era.

At least 90's era vision of the suburb gave you a sidewalk and neighborhood schools (of course which includes the daily mile long line of SUV's). Antioch just happened to come around when sidewalks were considered "obsolete" and the automobile was considered "boundless".

Again, just my opinion. I am proud to say I was born in Antioch. I grew up there and often reminisce of my childhood days there. But I will never move back.

BUT, just for shiggles, I would really like to hear your thoughts about how an independent Antioch government could have changed the course of the area. Please, change my mind. I left that place with a bitter taste in my mouth and would love to be able to relieve it.

Edited by nashvillwill

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Folks in Madison are starting to organize.  I met with some of those neighbors a few months back and they wanted to learn about what worked for us in East Nashville.  They also met with the HipDonelson group, which is just awesome.  I shared with them that it has taken East Nashville more than 20 years to be an overnight success, whereas Donelson fortunately never got into a bad situation and is primed for smart growth. 

 

The Council Members for Donelson I think are pro-growth, but also listen to their constituents's concerns.  Both Donelson and Madison have a little bit more conservative base than we have in East Nashville, but being fiscally conservative or even socially conservative doesn't necessarily mean that you oppose zoning that supports transit-oriented development, for example.

 

The key I think for Madison will be to get good about branding, which East Nashville learned how to do through word of mouth and Donelson has already mastered in terms of social media.  Madison needs to find something unique that they have to offer.  Certainly their downtown area has good bones if they can spruce it up and make it a destination.  The chains that dominate Madison aren't going to make it a destination.  The Amqui Station is hidden away in back streets and almost nothing happens there, but if they have a unique festival there and put some small, independent businesses around it, the Amqui Station could be its own attractive town square. Then once that demand can be demonstrated there will be support from the Council Members for the transportation/access issue, which is a challenge. 

 

Donelson is going to take care of itself.  Madison has great potential if it can catch the wave that is expanding outward from East Nashville.  Antioch, however, is kind of cut off from the growth in Nashville.  Nolensville Rd has awesome ethnic restaurants.  But Murfreesboro Road just doesn't have a lot going for it.  Sorry. 

 

South Nashville is a prime growth area, both as people fix up the Fairgrounds area and as ex-suburban residents from Williamson County continue to migrate toward the urban core as they downsize.  I think that North Nashville will also be a growth area in the near future.  If I were investing in real estate, I would buy around Fisk.   A mayoral election victory for Jerry Maynard would almost certainly provide some focus on North Nashville that it has been lacking for at least half a century. 

Edited by bwithers1
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One truth about growth is this. In a city like Nashville, the different parts of the city have to be connected to a viable mass transit system to the city core. Along the transit routes, you will have good growth and density. The farther from those transit routes are away from the areas that need growth the harder it is for them to grow in an urban manner.

The main challenge for the next two mayors over the next 8 to 16 years will be viable mass transit options for Nashville, none of which are cheap. Remember an apple can rot from the outside in, so the areas just outside the core have to have good if not great mass transit. That is the single biggest issue, as the core is doing great right now. We are again having to play catch up with our peer cities.

I think the Nashville Next program is a great start to coming up with a plan. If Mayor Dean's legacy was not the convention center, then surely it would have been NN. The next mayors will have to implement parts of the plan, so we need a mayor that is forward thinking and bold. The big question will be how it is going to be paid for.

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I'll emphasize again, Antioch would be a bystander simply because it was never in control of its own destiny. Had this area been carved out and incorporated just prior to Metro, there is every reason to believe that it would be in far better shape today. After all, have any of the incorporated communities in Davidson County (exclusive of Nashville) similarly experienced such a dramatic rise and fall ? Without Metro Mayors, Councilmembers and School Board members imposing their will, especially when virtually all of them did not live here or had to suffer the repercussions of such decisions, it's hard to believe there wouldn't have been a different outcome.

Over the years, I thought (even as a Conservative) that consolidation (not just Nashville but elsewhere) was a good idea. It can give a truer sense of how populous a locale is (not just a central city), and the other supposed benefits of reducing duplicated services and the like. But really what I was doing was looking at the numbers themselves from a dispassionate perspective. "Numbers" don't inhabit a city, people do. Within those cities are neighborhoods. When cities get larger and larger, they get further and further away from the neighborhoods and their concerns. As a result, it's almost impossible to avoid elitists making decisions on their behalf that don't have to live with the results.

If Antioch were a part of the political and cultural elite and decided to impose its will over tony West Nashville, does one believe for a moment it would look and be the way it is today ?

Don't take my statements to mean we can bring Antioch back to what it was in the '80s. That horse has left the barn. What I am saying, where Metro has failed, is that the neighborhoods themselves, wherever they may be, should be in control of the decisionmaking processes explicitly affecting them. As I told the former owner and moderator of the Nashville Charrette, if there is an issue relating to the street he lives on downtown that requires an action of the entire Metro Council, that itself is the problem. It is an issue that should not need input and action beyond those who reside in that neighborhood. I don't want downtown making the decisions for Antioch, nor should Antioch be making decisions for downtown.

In the 21st century, we need to be devolving power from the higher levels to the local areas, federally on down. It makes for more efficient, responsive and responsible governance.

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Considering the current state of the GOP in Tennessee, the last thing Nashville needs is one of them running the place.  Their idea of governance would be making sure we are all going to sunday school.  The evangelical crowd has way too much power within that political party. 

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Welcome to the forum shanky. I tend to agree with you even though I am a little further right than most on the board. We still need a progressive to lead the city. I am getting turned off by the GOP in a lot of areas as I think a lot of folks are. Neither party learns from each others mistakes and tends to make the same ones over and over and over.

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Considering the current state of the GOP in Tennessee, the last thing Nashville needs is one of them running the place.  Their idea of governance would be making sure we are all going to sunday school.  The evangelical crowd has way too much power within that political party. 

The current state ? You mean making Tennessee a premier, destination state with excellently managed budget and a government that stays away from trendy social extremism ? Nashville could certainly do with that kind of leadership for a change after 126 years of one party.

Seriously, if you guys think Tennessee is so radical with "those Christians !", you fellas might feel more comfortable in California or Massachusetts, whose current state of affairs is far more to your liking.

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Considering the current state of affairs in Nashville, like being on every hot list in every major publication, I'm pretty sure most don't want a change from our current trajectory.

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^Given city leadership for the 4 decades of my lifetime, I couldn't possibly ask more strenuously for change. :-)

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I have zero idea how you reconcile reality and your beliefs, but either way happy hump day!

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It is precisely that I recognize what reality is that gives me my belief system. It contrasts with those on your side in that if you believe in something fervently enough, it will somehow change reality, no matter how much that cannot and will never be. That's why I'm no longer on that side of the spectrum. Happy Wednesday to you, too. :-)

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