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Mith242

Fayetteville, Arkansas

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Mayor Jordan is still looking into making Fayetteville Wi-Fi. He mentioned focusing on a particular area, like the Square, to start and then move the Wi-Fi out from there. Would be a nice thing to have around the city. As far as I know I don't think there's any Arkansas city that offers free Wi-Fi.

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Mayor Jordan is still looking into making Fayetteville Wi-Fi. He mentioned focusing on a particular area, like the Square, to start and then move the Wi-Fi out from there. Would be a nice thing to have around the city. As far as I know I don't think there's any Arkansas city that offers free Wi-Fi.

Municipal WiFi is one of those ideas that sounds good until you start looking at the hard facts. If a city depends on a ISP for service the city can be left holding the bag when the ISP backs out of the contract and have a very expensive network to either finish out or maintain. Installing and operating a WiFi network on it's own, while a better option, can commit a city to a huge financial burden at a time when internet access from providers already in place is becoming cheaper for higher bandwidths. The technological problems alone can lead to a much higher cost than is usually envisoned at the start. A city with the topography that Fayetteville has presents even more problems and higher costs. At a time when the city is cutting back and has so many other needs a municipal WiFi network in Fayetteville is a bad idea. Let's finish cleaning up the ice storm debris, build some much needed streets and sidewalks and if any cash is left over we can help out some of the worthy non-profit organizations in town.

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Municipal WiFi is one of those ideas that sounds good until you start looking at the hard facts. If a city depends on a ISP for service the city can be left holding the bag when the ISP backs out of the contract and have a very expensive network to either finish out or maintain. Installing and operating a WiFi network on it's own, while a better option, can commit a city to a huge financial burden at a time when internet access from providers already in place is becoming cheaper for higher bandwidths. The technological problems alone can lead to a much higher cost than is usually envisoned at the start. A city with the topography that Fayetteville has presents even more problems and higher costs. At a time when the city is cutting back and has so many other needs a municipal WiFi network in Fayetteville is a bad idea. Let's finish cleaning up the ice storm debris, build some much needed streets and sidewalks and if any cash is left over we can help out some of the worthy non-profit organizations in town.

Apparently there was one person who asked Jordan to spend the money on sidewalks instead. But I got the impression the W-Fi wouldn't be happening overnight and the whole process could take quite a while anyway.

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Looks like demolition of the parking deck at the Washington County Courthouse will start in April. The new parking deck is scheduled to be completed in late 2010. The Washington County veteran's office and archives are moving to the south side of town. I haven't figured out if the move is permanent or just while construction of the parking deck is taking place.

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The Fayetteville Forward Summit, Mayor Jordan's promised economic development summit is set to begin next week. The four day event will include representatives from many local interests and an out of state facilitator. Sounds like they expect up to 250 attendees and meetings will be held both night and day at both the Town Center and Continuing Education center downtown. The catch words for the summit are discover, dream, design and deploy.

The out of state facilitator will take home to Chicago a cool $17,500- not a bad return on a trip to Arkansas. The whole price tag for the event is said to be $38,500, which if the summit builds on what has already been done and creates more economic opportunity in Fayetteville will be money well spent. Only time will tell.

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The Fayetteville Forward Summit, Mayor Jordan's promised economic development summit is set to begin next week. The four day event will include representatives from many local interests and an out of state facilitator. Sounds like they expect up to 250 attendees and meetings will be held both night and day at both the Town Center and Continuing Education center downtown. The catch words for the summit are discover, dream, design and deploy.

The out of state facilitator will take home to Chicago a cool $17,500- not a bad return on a trip to Arkansas. The whole price tag for the event is said to be $38,500, which if the summit builds on what has already been done and creates more economic opportunity in Fayetteville will be money well spent. Only time will tell.

Yeah I've been debating whether to try to make time to check it out. I'm curious but I haven't seen big changes since the 2020 meetings. With the current economy it's hard to get too exciting and hyped about seeing anything new. But maybe I'm just being too pessimistic.

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Municipal WiFi is one of those ideas that sounds good until you start looking at the hard facts. If a city depends on a ISP for service the city can be left holding the bag when the ISP backs out of the contract and have a very expensive network to either finish out or maintain. Installing and operating a WiFi network on it's own, while a better option, can commit a city to a huge financial burden at a time when internet access from providers already in place is becoming cheaper for higher bandwidths. The technological problems alone can lead to a much higher cost than is usually envisoned at the start. A city with the topography that Fayetteville has presents even more problems and higher costs. At a time when the city is cutting back and has so many other needs a municipal WiFi network in Fayetteville is a bad idea. Let's finish cleaning up the ice storm debris, build some much needed streets and sidewalks and if any cash is left over we can help out some of the worthy non-profit organizations in town.

Municipal WiFi can be a great asset to a city or area if its planned and implemented correctly. I have felt that WiFi in certain areas of Fayetteville would be a great thing, especially if partnered with the University, considering the number of students that would most likely utilize it away from campus. I've actually contacted the mayor regarding talking with him about this (I'm in the networking industry).

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I am all for Fayetteville setting up a limited Wi-Fi system. I just think that the UofA is needed to be a partner and that there is a minimum density (that includes both residential density and commercial/business density). No damn reason to put a WiFi system where only 1 or 2 people would use it. I like the side walk idea better! Have you ever tried to walk down Garland, Leverrett, Maple, East Dickson, 71B from downtown to the mall, 6th street from Farmington to College (nothing like have a old and small sidewalk right next to vehicles going 45-70), Wedington/North street (try crossing 540 anywhere, you will notice NO actual crosswalks/sidewalks in Fayetteville).

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I am all for Fayetteville setting up a limited Wi-Fi system. I just think that the UofA is needed to be a partner and that there is a minimum density (that includes both residential density and commercial/business density). No damn reason to put a WiFi system where only 1 or 2 people would use it. I like the side walk idea better! Have you ever tried to walk down Garland, Leverrett, Maple, East Dickson, 71B from downtown to the mall, 6th street from Farmington to College (nothing like have a old and small sidewalk right next to vehicles going 45-70), Wedington/North street (try crossing 540 anywhere, you will notice NO actual crosswalks/sidewalks in Fayetteville).

Yeah can't complain about more sidewalks. Despite them working on putting in new sidewalks the city is still so far behind. It would be nice to see them put a bigger effort.

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Municipal WiFi can be a great asset to a city or area if its planned and implemented correctly. I have felt that WiFi in certain areas of Fayetteville would be a great thing, especially if partnered with the University, considering the number of students that would most likely utilize it away from campus. I've actually contacted the mayor regarding talking with him about this (I'm in the networking industry).

I guess for me it's a question of what return on taxpayer money would the city be looking for by investing in building a WiFi network and the continued investment in maintaining it. If the goal is to give the city a hip image then there are much more cost efficient ways of improving the image of Fayetteville. If the goal is help out those who can't afford internet access then it would be better to have a need-based system of aid to assist those people. This could be a break on their city utility bill or similar method. I actually wonder how many students would use it seeing as the usage would probably be limited in speed and amount of data downloaded, not to mention the filter that would be put on it. Either way the city shouldn't be using taxpayer money to compete with existing businesses that offer internet access.

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Yeah I've been debating whether to try to make time to check it out. I'm curious but I haven't seen big changes since the 2020 meetings. With the current economy it's hard to get too exciting and hyped about seeing anything new. But maybe I'm just being too pessimistic.

Sounds like they are trying to make it easy to attend- the first day's sessions will be the same content just at different times of the day so people can attend when convenient. It should be worth checking out if only to hear what the business community has to say to the new city administration. Since Mayor Jordan acknowledges the city will grow and this summit is about how it will grow some interesting ideas might come out of it.

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Northwest Arkansas ranks 4th in Forbes magazine's new "Best Places for Business and Careers" ranking:

http://realestate.yahoo.com/promo/best-pla...mQtY2FyZWVycw--

It appears NWA would have ranked first if not for its abysmal "Education Attainment" rating. All others were very high.

Little Rock came in at #22.

Edited by Sammy00

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Northwest Arkansas ranks 4th in Forbes magazine's new "Best Places for Business and Careers" ranking:

http://realestate.yahoo.com/promo/best-pla...mQtY2FyZWVycw--

It appears NWA would have ranked first if not for its abysmal "Education Attainment" rating. All others were very high.

Little Rock came in at #22.

Thanks for the link. Looks like Ft Smith was ranked 72nd. Educational attainment hurts all the Arkansas metros in the rankings. It's certainly something for NWA to work on. Especially since the U of A is located here.

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Thanks for the link. Looks like Ft Smith was ranked 72nd. Educational attainment hurts all the Arkansas metros in the rankings. It's certainly something for NWA to work on. Especially since the U of A is located here.

I don't know the formula they use to calculate the metric, but in the subcategories we are absolutely horrible in: culture and leisure, educational attainment, and colleges. We did OK in crime rate and really well in all of the other categories. The odd thing is that it ranks us and Fort Smith both at exactly 195 in culture and leisure, but says it is a rank so two metros CAN'T have the same number... Of course Austin came in at 118 in that category, so we would REALLY have to improve before we got a lot better...I have always thought of Austin as a pretty happening place for its size. It looks like large cities have a clear cut advantage in this one as it simply counts the number of venues, so a city of 2 million people with two golf courses will outrank a town of 100,000 with one if everything else is equal...in other words it is kind of dumb.

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Northwest Arkansas ranks 4th in Forbes magazine's new "Best Places for Business and Careers" ranking:

http://realestate.yahoo.com/promo/best-pla...mQtY2FyZWVycw--

It appears NWA would have ranked first if not for its abysmal "Education Attainment" rating. All others were very high.

Little Rock came in at #22.

Couple of thoughts:

1. Regarding the rankings - I read an article in the Benton County Daily Record a month or two ago consisting of interviews from people touring the upcoming Crystal Bridges museum site. They were in awe, saying there wouldn't be anything like this in America.

Wonder how far we'll go up in the "Culture" category when that opens?

2. Not to belittle Ole Main but - it's a shame they couldn't get a better picture of the NWA metro area than the one they used. (Then again, what would they have used?) Then again, they're still calling this metro area "Fayetteville" (not to belittle Fayetteville, but you all know the NWA drill as much as I).

3. Notice that, out of the top 25 places, Arkansas was only one of five states (AR, CO, NC, TX, WA) to get two or more metro areas listed. All in all, only 14 American states were represented in that top 25 list.

Considering the competition, that's pretty good, IMO.

Forget the discussion, but somewhere I was talking with someone about the two main metro areas now in Arkansas - how if you figure one as Little Rock/Pine Bluff/Hot Springs/Searcy and the other as NWA/Fort Smith (adding in projected metro area counties for NWA such as Adair and Delaware in Oklahoma and possibly Carroll in Arkansas) you get two metro areas headquartered in the same state that are near, in population, what Louisville and Memphis were in the late 80s/early 90s. California, Florida or Texas we ain't, but this is still making for an interesting mix of demographics, growth and opportunities.

Edited by KJW

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2. Not to belittle Ole Main but - it's a shame they couldn't get a better picture of the NWA metro area than the one they used. (Then again, what would they have used?) Then again, they're still calling this metro area "Fayetteville" (not to belittle Fayetteville, but you all know the NWA drill as much as I).

Every metro area on the list is named by the largest city within that metro. Fayetteville is by the largest city within NWA and is still the most recognized nationally. Why should this metro be named differently? Instead of taking the divisive Mayor Womack stance why not just celebrate the fact that the area has been listed?

I certainly hope that Fayetteville is seen as more representative of NWA in the promotion of the area as a sustainability hub for the nation. If you take a drive out State Highway 12 from Bentonville or State Highway 279 from Centerton towards the NWA Regional Airport and see the widely scattered residential and commercial developments with huge amounts of green space separating them you will realize that that type of sprawling development is exactly what the sustainablity movement is against.

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Here's an article on the Fayetteville Forward Summit with the schedule at the bottom of it.

Morning News article

The one statement about economic development being more than just job development is a little worrisome. Providing jobs and income for all residents is what economic development should be all about. The idea that it should be just about having higher paying jobs could lead to Fayetteville becoming the Green Valley to California's Silicon Valley, where the those having the ordinary jobs such as police officer, teacher, hotel maid, etc. have to commute from many miles away to their jobs.

Edited by zman9810

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Went to the Fayetteville Forward meeting last night. Overall not bad, but I admit it wasn't quite what I was expecting. I had thought some more info like the newest light rail study or the Eva Klein study were going to be discussed. But the city didn't really put any info out there in the first phase meeting. It was more of getting people to group up with other citizens they didn't know and talk about what they wanted to see. These meetings will be useful to give the city more info on what it's citizens want. But I also have to admit this type of meetings really isn't my cup of tea. It was interesting to see people's ideas. But I guess I'm more the hard info type. I had signed up for the second phase of the meeting this Saturday. I'd noticed the hours but I guess I had thought it was going to be more of an 'open house' But apparently the meeting really is all day long, 8-5. I just don't know if I have all day to attend something like that. I'm not sure if I can go and attend part of it or how that's going to work. But anyway sounds like more people are turning out than expected. Sounds like after today's meeting there will be around 400-500 people. They even moved the second phase meeting to meet demand.

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Went to the Fayetteville Forward meeting last night. Overall not bad, but I admit it wasn't quite what I was expecting. I had thought some more info like the newest light rail study or the Eva Klein study were going to be discussed. But the city didn't really put any info out there in the first phase meeting. It was more of getting people to group up with other citizens they didn't know and talk about what they wanted to see. These meetings will be useful to give the city more info on what it's citizens want. But I also have to admit this type of meetings really isn't my cup of tea. It was interesting to see people's ideas. But I guess I'm more the hard info type. I had signed up for the second phase of the meeting this Saturday. I'd noticed the hours but I guess I had thought it was going to be more of an 'open house' But apparently the meeting really is all day long, 8-5. I just don't know if I have all day to attend something like that. I'm not sure if I can go and attend part of it or how that's going to work. But anyway sounds like more people are turning out than expected. Sounds like after today's meeting there will be around 400-500 people. They even moved the second phase meeting to meet demand.

I'm glad you were able to go to the meeting. Is it the facilitation style that you didn't like about the meeting? Would you have liked more clarity about their methods and how exactly everyone's ideas will be weighed? Just curious. This is just aside from the fact that they didn't give any hard info.

I was under the impression (during the election debates) that the purpose was for business leaders in the area to get together and discuss how to better the local business economy. Now my impression is that it is sort of a 4-day hopeful replacement for doing the second part of the Eva Klein study. Sort of like a rejection of outside consultants in favor of the working man's solution.

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The first day of the summit was billed as the discover and dream section and it certainly fit that description. It was community driven with a little direction from the facilitator and city leaders. There was a wide range of city residents there and much hands on participation. There was some consensus on general ideas but a lack of specific goals of what needs to be done. This may be covered in the Saturday session with more concrete ideas on what direction the city needs to take and how to accomplish those goals.

One of my concerns about the summit is that city leaders will only hear what they already see as the needs of the community and how to develop in the future. The summit should not be used as a rubber stamp to carry out pre-conceived ideas but to actually to find out what all of Fayetteville's residents see as important although only a small percentage of the city's population will be at the summit. Saturday's session and the city leader's future actions will determine if the summit was successful.

The Saturday session has been moved to the old Bank of America on the east side of the square now known as East Square Plaza.

Edited by zman9810

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I'm glad you were able to go to the meeting. Is it the facilitation style that you didn't like about the meeting? Would you have liked more clarity about their methods and how exactly everyone's ideas will be weighed? Just curious. This is just aside from the fact that they didn't give any hard info.

I was under the impression (during the election debates) that the purpose was for business leaders in the area to get together and discuss how to better the local business economy. Now my impression is that it is sort of a 4-day hopeful replacement for doing the second part of the Eva Klein study. Sort of like a rejection of outside consultants in favor of the working man's solution.

I was mostly hoping for more concrete info from the city. I had expected some of the recent studies to be discussed. They very well may be at some point. I'm not trying to slam the meeting or anything. I'm sure there will be many people who really liked it. They tried to get everyone to pair up with someone who has different views than your own. Then you got moved again to another group of people. I was curious to find out more about the people at first table I was sitting at and never did. I think I can see what they were trying to accomplish and such. But it just wasn't really what I was looking for. I've been to other meetings and charettes and such that tend to do some things along these lines. I just wish the entire first meeting wasn't set up like this. The end part of the meeting your last table of people had to construct their 'dream tree' with supplies there at the meeting. I'm sure some people really got into that. But I didn't really go to the meeting to see how creative people could be in a limited amount of time. But I imagine a lot of people would be bored with my style of hard facts and concrete information and such. If I don't attend the second meeting I'm sure I'll miss out on some things I would like to see. But I have no idea what part of the meeting will have those things. I don't want to sit around 8-9 hours tomorrow doing similar things I did last night. No offense to anyone. I do at least feel there will probably be other people there who will represent views I agree with. Alternative transit/mass transit and such was touched on by every group of people I believe. There were also a number of people who talked about smart growth and limiting sprawl and such. I guess I just wish I knew what part of the meeting tomorrow I would most appreciate and attend that part. It sounded like they had originally hoped for at least 200 to 250 people to attend the first phase meetings. But as I said earlier looks like that number will be more around 400-500. Which is also why they moved the second meeting so they could have someplace for everyone. I'd be interested in hearing from someone if they attend the second meeting. I guess I may just have to watch for it on local tv. They filmed last night's meeting and I'm sure they'll film the second meeting as well.

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The first day of the summit was billed as the discover and dream section and it certainly fit that description. It was community driven with a little direction from the facilitator and city leaders. There was a wide range of city residents there and much hands on participation. There was some consensus on general ideas but a lack of specific goals of what needs to be done. This may be covered in the Saturday session with more concrete ideas on what direction the city needs to take and how to accomplish those goals.

One of my concerns about the summit is that city leaders will only hear what they already see as the needs of the community and how to develop in the future. The summit should not be used as a rubber stamp to carry out pre-conceived ideas but to actually to find out what all of Fayetteville's residents see as important although only a small percentage of the city's population will be at the summit. Saturday's session and the city leader's future actions will determine if the summit was successful.

The Saturday session has been moved to the old Bank of America on the east side of the square now known as East Square Plaza.

Thanks for mentioning where the second meeting had moved to. I forgot to mention that. There was someone there who mentioned that they wanted to get a good selection of people to view what a good 'slice' of Fayetteville's population wants. I think he even specifically said they didn't want to use this to 'rubber stamp' out any preconceived ideas. Of course we'll have to see if they really live up to that though I guess. They seemed really happy so many people were attending. The more people the better overall picture they get. It would be nice if you could get more people to turn out. But no matter what you do, there's just going to be some people who won't bother. I do feel there was more representation this time around compared to the City Plan 2025 meetings a couple of years back. I had been surprised to see so many people there who shared my ideas. But this time around there were people there who seemed against a lot of growth and such. Of course we know there is that group of people in Fayetteville as well. I just wish things had been set up differently.

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Thanks for mentioning where the second meeting had moved to. I forgot to mention that. There was someone there who mentioned that they wanted to get a good selection of people to view what a good 'slice' of Fayetteville's population wants. I think he even specifically said they didn't want to use this to 'rubber stamp' out any preconceived ideas. Of course we'll have to see if they really live up to that though I guess. They seemed really happy so many people were attending. The more people the better overall picture they get. It would be nice if you could get more people to turn out. But no matter what you do, there's just going to be some people who won't bother. I do feel there was more representation this time around compared to the City Plan 2025 meetings a couple of years back. I had been surprised to see so many people there who shared my ideas. But this time around there were people there who seemed against a lot of growth and such. Of course we know there is that group of people in Fayetteville as well. I just wish things had been set up differently.

I was surprised myself that some of my views were shared. The first person I was paired up with had many of the same opinions as I did and shared some insights that I hadn't thought of. On the other hand though I could tell that there were many of the anti-development crowd in attendance. One example was the attendee that emphasized their desire for pristine viewsheds of the greenspace, which if you are living in a city is not to be expected. If you want a countryside view then you might be better off living in the country rather than a growing city. There were many people who would be well served by visiting this forum and seeing the ideas that we have discussed. When I mentioned the impact that the Walton Arts Center's expansion could have on Fayetteville it surprised some people at my table. It just made clear how important it is to have a well informed public.

I had plans to attend Saturday's session but because of work related issues will be unable to. I regret this because I'm concerned that only the people who on the extreme sides of issues and show up at every city meeting may be seen as representing the whole city. This is not true- there are many who care deeply about Fayetteville's future but also have other committments to attend to. Public input at meetings like this is good to consider but should be only one of many factors that city leaders take into account.

Edited by zman9810

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Here's a follow up on a earlier discussion- the Street Committee has recommended widening Garland Avenue to four lanes between North Street and Melmar Drive with a median. This will extend the same type of design the portion of Garland south of North Street has and create a very attractive entrance to the city (assuming the same design will be extended out to I540 eventually). This will create a north-south corridor that when connected to the proposed Van Asche extension will improve access to the NWA Mall area. Since that area provides a large amount of the tax revenue that the city depends on it is important that it is easy to get to.

NWANews.com article

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