Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

ironchapman

Visions for Arkansas

Recommended Posts


What would you like to see happening in your state or city if you were in control?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

That's pretty easy for anyone living here in northwest Arkansas. More funding to help build infrastructure to keep up with the rapid growth up here. After I-540 was built there doesn't seem to be much drive to start up another major project up in this area. I know a lot of other sections of the state think it's their turn to get something. I can understand their point of view. But most of us here in northwest Arkansas believe in why let a good thing going die off. I am pretty sure a lot of revenue is being generated up here. I just think Arkansas doesn't get many chances to have something like this happen. It would be nice to see a little more help to let this area keep growing something that isn't just nice compared on Arkansas standards. But possibly nice on a national stage.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If I were to get more specific on some of the projects I'd like done. We had some studies done and it has been recomended that I-540 we widened from 6-8 lanes. But I have no idea when any money would be made available for this. They have talked about the Hwy 412 bypass around Springdale being high on the priority list for years now. Both projects would be nice. I also wish Fayetteville would hurry up and get some road work done around here. When a lot of the growth started, I think Fayetteville was worried about unrestricted growth. So they inacted tougher building codes and were hesitant to do much road work. Trying to let some of the development move north into the rest of northwest Arkansas. I see their point of view, but one problem is now they are finally starting to expand and widen some of these roads. But it's a bit of a mess because I think they waited a little too long. Rogers has certainly taken advantage of the situation and they have set themselves up rather nicely. Anyway sorry if I got off topic there.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Visions for Little Rock:

1.Consolidation of Little Rock, North Little Rock and Sherwood. The result would be a city of 260,000 +.

2.Remove UALR from the U of A system and let it develop into a major urban university.

3.Better control of sprawl and push downtown development..

4.Expand the trolley system and not allow parking decks without ground floor development.

5.Complete the North Belt Freeway. Its been talked about since the 1940's and the last word is that it is still 10 years away.

6.Encourage Dillard's to put a store back downtown. They are talking about putting an upscale store in West LR. Why not put it downtown? The excuse that people will not go downtown does not apply anymore, just look at the RiverMarket.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Visions for Little Rock:

1.Consolidation of Little Rock, North Little Rock and Sherwood. The result would be a city of 260,000 +.

2.Remove UALR from the U of A system and let it develop into a major urban university.

3.Better control of sprawl and push downtown development..

4.Expand the trolley system and not allow parking decks without ground floor development.

5.Complete the North Belt Freeway. Its been talked about since the 1940's and the last word is that it is still 10 years away.

6.Encourage Dillard's to put a store back downtown. They are talking about putting an upscale store in West LR.  Why not put it downtown? The excuse that people will not go downtown does not apply anymore, just look at the RiverMarket.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Those are all interesting, especially the UALR thing. UALR is held back by U of A Fayetteville. It's Little Rock's only major university but it still has a reputation of being a "commuter" university---definitely a turnoff. U of A Fay also tries to control the flow of funds to other universities in the state.

Little Rock and North Little Rock are pretty interesting beasts. There are so many cities that have rivers flowing right through them (Tulsa, just upstream, for example), but here, two separate entities developed. I guess in the olden days the river was considered to wide for comfortable commute, so they each gained their distinct somewhat-isolated character.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Those are all interesting, especially the UALR thing.  UALR is held back by U of A Fayetteville.  It's Little Rock's only major university but it still has a reputation of being a "commuter" university---definitely a turnoff.  U of A Fay also tries to control the flow of funds to other universities in the state.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I love the U of A and I'd hate to side on something that wouldn't benefit it. But I'd have to agree. I think UALR would be a lot better off on it's own. I seem to remember it having a nice enrollment not far behind the U of A at Fayetteville.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Visions for Little Rock:

1.Consolidation of Little Rock, North Little Rock and Sherwood. The result would be a city of 260,000 +.

2.Remove UALR from the U of A system and let it develop into a major urban university.

3.Better control of sprawl and push downtown development..

4.Expand the trolley system and not allow parking decks without ground floor development.

5.Complete the North Belt Freeway. Its been talked about since the 1940's and the last word is that it is still 10 years away.

6.Encourage Dillard's to put a store back downtown. They are talking about putting an upscale store in West LR.  Why not put it downtown? The excuse that people will not go downtown does not apply anymore, just look at the RiverMarket.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Speaking of parking decks. They are talking about putting some in around the Dickson Street/Square area of Fayetteville. It would be nice if they would do the same and have ground floor development. Anyone who's familiar with that area knows something has to be done with parking, I just hope they do it right.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My Vision for Arkansas:

-starts seriously investing in education

-builds new University in Little Rock a tier or two above in quality over UALR

-develops the Riverfront in LR moreso than already (think the river fronts in New York: nicely bricked and lots of attractions along the way)

-I-69 attracts manafacturers

-Marion lands an automobile plant

-Arkansas School for Math, Science, and Art in Hot Springs gets better facilities (using old St. Joseph's hospital right now)

-Invests in alternative energy resources

-Strategic planning for the new technologies of the future (biotech, alternative energy, etc.) and how to gain a foothold over the rest of the states

-more Asians and other races attracted

-I-49 built

-Wesley Clark wins presidency, sets up a presidential library in little rock (two!)

...more later.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've only lived in NWA for around two years now (previously lived in S.C. AR) but I agree with a lot of what Mith is saying. The potential for growth in this area is what initially attracted me- Fayetteville, in particular, is an area in which I feel there is a lot of potential to develop its own sort of "NWA culture," if you will, whereas the rest of the metro area seems to be adapting to growth and business remarkably well.

Now if we could only find some way to work with the other cities on this one, perhaps NWA could be the next Dallas-Fort Worth that many have projected it may become.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Visions for Little Rock:

1.Consolidation of Little Rock, North Little Rock and Sherwood. The result would be a city of 260,000 +.

2.Remove UALR from the U of A system and let it develop into a major urban university.

3.Better control of sprawl and push downtown development..

4.Expand the trolley system and not allow parking decks without ground floor development.

5.Complete the North Belt Freeway. Its been talked about since the 1940's and the last word is that it is still 10 years away.

6.Encourage Dillard's to put a store back downtown. They are talking about putting an upscale store in West LR.  Why not put it downtown? The excuse that people will not go downtown does not apply anymore, just look at the RiverMarket.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I thought I might add a few more items.

7. Extend the River Rail down Markham to the Missouri Pacific Train Station. At one time this was the home of Slick Willy's World of Entertainment and Buster's, which was the beginning of Dave & Buster's before they moved to Dallas. The train station is within walking distance of the State Capital.

Train Station.

b_photo_about_us.jpg

Doe's Eat Place on Markham

DoeFront.jpg

View of train station and Capital. The ballfield is on the East end of the school campus.

15.jpg4.jpg

8. Develop a market that would focus on Arkansas arts and crafts that would compliment the farmers market in the River Market. Build it on the ground floor of a parking deck and also include space for small independently owned restaurants. To top it off have a roof top restaurant with in and outdoor seating. It would have been great if they would have put a restaurant on the 7th floor of the River District parking deck. The views of the city are great from up there.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My Vision for Arkansas:

-starts seriously investing in education

-builds new University in Little Rock a tier or two above in quality over UALR

-develops the Riverfront in LR moreso than already (think the river fronts in New York: nicely bricked and lots of attractions along the way)

-I-69 attracts manafacturers

-Marion lands an automobile plant

-Arkansas School for Math, Science, and Art in Hot Springs gets better facilities (using old St. Joseph's hospital right now)

-Invests in alternative energy resources

-Strategic planning for the new technologies of the future (biotech, alternative energy, etc.) and how to gain a foothold over the rest of the states

-more Asians and other races attracted

-I-49 built

-Wesley Clark wins presidency, sets up a presidential library in little rock (two!)

...more later.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

-Little Rock Metro land the headquarters of a major company (almost Wal-Martesque) or a quickly developing company (like Dell Computer) start in Little Rock. Part of the reason why it's growth has been so stagnant in the city is because it doesn't have a major industry....it's economy is diverse and stable. Fed-Ex was actually started in LR, Arkansas but moved to Memphis because our airport was not up to standards. Now it's helped MEmphis' economy and made its airport is HUGE.

-Fayetteville-Springdale-Rogers-Bentonville develop an urban core, or downtown area with skyscrapers (maybe Wally world wants one), perhaps in Lowell, since it's between them all

-Arkansas' population reach 3.5 million in the next 15 years.

-Light rail system implemented in both NW arkansas and Little Rock. the vintage trolleys are a nice start

-I would love for all the metros to be more agressive in development, but Jonesboro and Hot Springs have the most potential (besides NW ark and LR)

-millionaires/billionaires of the state meet together to implement some of the plans listed philanthropically (word?)

:alc:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ah Yes, one more:

-The land by the interstates be landscaped somewhat, either by the government or privately. San Diego and other large cities all have very nice landscaping.....really helps improve the feel

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ah Yes, one more:

-The land by the interstates be landscaped somewhat, either by the government or privately.  San Diego and other large cities all have very nice landscaping.....really helps improve the feel

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Yeah I've seen some nice stuff in Albuquerque and especially Santa Fe. But Arkansas seems to have a hard enough time getting them built in the first place. I don't know if many people would use private funds for something like that. But I do agree it does look nice.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Things I would like to see for Arkansas:

1. Casinos in Texarkana, Ft. Smith and West Memphis. This would stop the outflow of money to places like Mississippi. People in Arkansas like to gamble so let them do it in the state. It would also help fund education in the state.

2. Take the budget surplus of 250 million to fund a super project in the Little Rock area related to tourism. Out of state money is almost free for taxing purposes. Also, to get to LR you have to travel through another part of the state. Use the money to produce money not just throw it away on local pork.

3. Begin a system of Budd car type rail service from Memphis to Little Rock, NWA to LR. The Memphis/LR section should work partly because of the number of Memphis people using Southwest out of LR.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Things I would like to see for Arkansas:

1. Casinos in Texarkana, Ft. Smith and West Memphis. This would stop the outflow of money to places like Mississippi. People in Arkansas like to gamble so let them do it in the state. It would also help fund education in the state.

2. Take the budget surplus of 250 million to fund a super project in the Little Rock area related to tourism. Out of state money is almost free for taxing purposes. Also, to get to LR you have to travel through another part of the state. Use the money to produce money not just throw it away on local pork.

3. Begin a system of Budd car type rail service from Memphis to Little Rock, NWA to LR. The Memphis/LR section should work partly because of the number of Memphis people using Southwest out of LR.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I agree on the gambling. I have no interest in it but would like to see the money not leave the state. Although I'm not sure what locations you would pick. I have often heard Hot Springs and West Memphis mentioned. I also think Pine Bluf could use something like this. I also don't know if people from other parts of the state would want all the money spent mainly in one area.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As far as gambling goes does anyone have any preferences on where it should be at? In the past I have heard mentions of Hot Springs and West Memphis. I imagine mainly because of the horse and dog racing in those cities respectively. For that matter Hot Springs has had a history of it. I think Pine Bluff could use something like that also. Ft Smith might be a good location for it, try to head people off before they get to Oklahoma. Looks like Oklahoma is wanting to head more into the direction Mississippi has gone and they are expanding their gambling there. I'm not sure I'd want it here in northwest Arkansas. Although I would like to see more done up here. We already have the Ozarks and Eureka Springs nearby that attract tourist. Just thought it would be a nice addition for those wanting more than outdoor/small town things to do.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Things I would like to see for Arkansas:

1. Casinos in Texarkana, Ft. Smith and West Memphis. This would stop the outflow of money to places like Mississippi. People in Arkansas like to gamble so let them do it in the state. It would also help fund education in the state.

2. Take the budget surplus of 250 million to fund a super project in the Little Rock area related to tourism. Out of state money is almost free for taxing purposes. Also, to get to LR you have to travel through another part of the state. Use the money to produce money not just throw it away on local pork.

3. Begin a system of Budd car type rail service from Memphis to Little Rock, NWA to LR. The Memphis/LR section should work partly because of the number of Memphis people using Southwest out of LR.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

The following goes with #3. Remember these run on existing railways with station construction the major cost.

90 seat powered unit.

dmu-profile.jpg

338 seat with one powered unit.

2car.jpg

The double unit cost less per seat than the LR trolley.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The following goes with #3. Remember these run on existing railways with station construction the major cost.

90 seat powered unit.

dmu-profile.jpg

338 seat with one powered unit.

2car.jpg

The double unit cost less per seat than the LR trolley.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

whoa. I would use it. But I wonder how it would catch on. How fast do these things go?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

whoa.  I would use it.  But I wonder how it would catch on.  How fast do these things go?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Also, if you were to implement something like this, you might as well extend it to tulsa, and from there, OK city.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

At first I wasn't sure if the idea would work. Amtrak had service going from southwest Arkansas through northeast Arkansas in the past and it never was very successful. But connecting more urban areas could be the key. The one down side still is the way many cities are set up. Being so spread out you have to have vehicles to get about. You'd have to make sure you had enough easy access to get around to the different areas. So that people would use it not not simply use the car and drive over themselves.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

At first I wasn't sure if the idea would work.  Amtrak had service going from southwest Arkansas through northeast Arkansas in the past and it never was very successful.  But connecting more urban areas could be it's key.  The one down side still is the way many cities are set up.  Being so spread out you have to have vehicles to get about.  You'd have to make sure you had enough easy access to get around to the different areas.  So that people would use it not not simply use the car and drive over themselves.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I read an article today in the Northwest Arkansas Business Journal entitle "It's Now or Never for Light Rail Mass Transit." Summary: Property values and costs are going up, and available land for routes is getting eaten up to.

Here's the scanned map of what the route would look like. It uses exists Arkansas-Missouri railroad routes too:

scan0001.gif

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Random facts:

-The route would have 10 stops

-Use between 10-22 railcars

-Cost would be between $550 million and 1.24 Bilion (Arkansas will only spend $232 milion on highway construction between 2005 and 2007)

-In another four years, it won't be feasible because of development and increasing property values (right of way property in the area doubles every two years)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I read an article today in the Northwest Arkansas Business Journal entitle "It's Now or Never for Light Rail Mass Transit."  Summary:  Property values and costs are going up, and available land for routes is getting eaten up to. 

Here's the scanned map of what the route would look like.  It uses exists Arkansas-Missouri railroad routes too:

scan0001.gif

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Yeah I saw something like that a little while back in the northwest edition of the Ark Dem-Gaz. I'm not sure how badly we need one at the moment. But's true though, real estate is being gobbled up and real estate prices just keep going up. If they don't do something soon it will probably be too expensive to ever get built. Speaking of real estate, I've heard that the average price of a house up here has pretty much passed up everyone else in the region. Earlier this year or last year we had passed up Dallas and some other city. Not only do you have all the growth, you also have a lot of Californians moving into the area. Being ranked pretty high on numerous polls have attracted us to their attention. They can come in and buy a house similar to what they had in California for 1/3th the price. A while back they did a study and said more Californians were moving into northwest Arkansas than any other state. Even Missouri and Oklahoma. I knew there were quite a few Californians, but that still surprised me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not only do you have all the growth, you also have a lot of Californians moving into the area.  Being ranked pretty high on numerous polls have attracted us to their attention.  They can come in and buy a house similar to what they had in California for 1/3th the price.  A while back they did a study and said more Californians were moving into northwest Arkansas than any other state.  Even Missouri and Oklahoma.  I knew there were quite a few Californians, but that still surprised me.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Hey, they're just making up for all the Arkies that left for California back in the 1940s. :lol:

It's funny, I just read that article in the Arkansas Business, and was going to post about it. According to the article, a diesel/electric train would produce only two percent of the pollution of a single automobile! I like the sound of that. Interstate congestion in NWA is certainly a problem, and it would be great to actually see some foresight alleviate it, before it's too late.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.