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Mith242

Ft Smith To Redevelop Downtown Area

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After seeing cities in northwest Arkansas successfully redeveloping their downtown areas Ft Smith has decided to do likewise. The most prominent part would be to turn Garrison Ave into something a little similar to Dickson St in Fayetteville. I'm not sure anyone could duplicate the feel of Dickson St because part of it's success comes from just being downstreet from a major university. But this project would still seem to be something good for the city of Ft Smith to try.

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Hey FortSmithGuy, I know you're new but it would be great if you could give us some more info on Ft Smith. A lot of the other metro areas have been well covered but Ft Smith isn't one of them. Feel free to contribute about Ft Smith or anything else for that matter.

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After seeing cities in northwest Arkansas successfully redeveloping their downtown areas Ft Smith has decided to do likewise. The most prominent part would be to turn Garrison Ave into something a little similar to Dickson St in Fayetteville. I'm not sure anyone could duplicate the feel of Dickson St because part of it's success comes from just being downstreet from a major university. But this project would still seem to be something good for the city of Ft Smith to try.

It would also be harder to convince residents of Ft Smith to turn Garrison Ave into a Dickson St. First, Garrison Ave is also a major federal Hwy (Hwy 64) and an arterial roadway whereas Dickson St is a local city road with no major outlet. City leaders in Ft Smith would have to get through a lot of the bureacratic red tape to make modifications to the roadway and the city leaders are not very progressive in this regard. Second, there is too much truck and auto traffic even with the improved truck route to bypass Garrison. Third, Garrison is too wide and doesn't really have a Dickson/Bourbon Street feel and isn't entirely too pedestrian friendly.

In my opinion, the river front would be a prime location for a Dickson Street type location and atmosphere for Fort Smith, and Garrison Ave should continue to be developed with more commercial office space.

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In my opinion, the river front would be a prime location for a Dickson Street type location and atmosphere for Fort Smith, and Garrison Ave should continue to be developed with more commercial office space.

It would, if they weren't turning it into that Casino.

I would like to see Garrison Ave. develop some loft projects, the street has that frontier feel that would go well with condos.

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That's really cool that Ft. Smith is working on it's downtown. I notice a lot of cities across the nation are doing that.

It's a big trend going on right now. Some poeple are getting sick of typical cookie cutter sprawl and are going back to the downtown. I wouldn't expect a whole lot of development downtown, but there will be noticable changes in the future.

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It would also be harder to convince residents of Ft Smith to turn Garrison Ave into a Dickson St. First, Garrison Ave is also a major federal Hwy (Hwy 64) and an arterial roadway whereas Dickson St is a local city road with no major outlet. City leaders in Ft Smith would have to get through a lot of the bureacratic red tape to make modifications to the roadway and the city leaders are not very progressive in this regard. Second, there is too much truck and auto traffic even with the improved truck route to bypass Garrison. Third, Garrison is too wide and doesn't really have a Dickson/Bourbon Street feel and isn't entirely too pedestrian friendly.

In my opinion, the river front would be a prime location for a Dickson Street type location and atmosphere for Fort Smith, and Garrison Ave should continue to be developed with more commercial office space.

Good points. Do you think that a casino will actually be built there in Ft Smith?

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That's really cool that Ft. Smith is working on it's downtown. I notice a lot of cities across the nation are doing that.

Ft Smith was way ahead of the curve. When the River Market project was just getting started a decade ago Ft Smith already had a strip of bars and restaurants downtown. Rejuvenation really started there the same time it did on Dickson. They have been at a steady pace since then but I think the problem they've had getting going is residential. They loft and condo projects you see in the River Market or Dickson aren't popping up there.

I really hope they get the U.S. Marshalls museum.

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Ft Smith was way ahead of the curve. When the River Market project was just getting started a decade ago Ft Smith already had a strip of bars and restaurants downtown. Rejuvenation really started there the same time it did on Dickson. They have been at a steady pace since then but I think the problem they've had getting going is residential. They loft and condo projects you see in the River Market or Dickson aren't popping up there.

I really hope they get the U.S. Marshalls museum.

Yeah the Marshalls Museum would be very nice. As far as the condo projects go I just wonder if it's because there just isn't enough demand for them. Does anyone know Ft Smith's growth rate. I got the impression it is or was still growing but it gets overlooked because it isn't anytwhere like NWA's growth. But with Whirlpool and Beverly going the directions they are maybe the growth has stopped in Ft Smith.

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Yeah the Marshalls Museum would be very nice. As far as the condo projects go I just wonder if it's because there just isn't enough demand for them. Does anyone know Ft Smith's growth rate. I got the impression it is or was still growing but it gets overlooked because it isn't anytwhere like NWA's growth. But with Whirlpool and Beverly going the directions they are maybe the growth has stopped in Ft Smith.

Like Little Rock and most core cities Ft Smith is growing rather slowly. The target demographic for downtown living of professionals that are either young and childless or older empty nesters is present in Ft Smith - there are plenty of health care professionals, lawyers, and businessmen there.

That said, the siphoning off of the young, hip demographic to Fayetteville and to a lesser extent Little Rock or Tulsa is probably having some effect on lack of residential growth in downtown Ft Smith. It also is conspicuously lacking in downtown hotels.

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Like Little Rock and most core cities Ft Smith is growing rather slowly. The target demographic for downtown living of professionals that are either young and childless or older empty nesters is present in Ft Smith - there are plenty of health care professionals, lawyers, and businessmen there.

That said, the siphoning off of the young, hip demographic to Fayetteville and to a lesser extent Little Rock or Tulsa is probably having some effect on lack of residential growth in downtown Ft Smith. It also is conspicuously lacking in downtown hotels.

Good points. I keep wondering if Ft Smith is going to be able to get something going to change. I'm just not sure. I almost wonder if it's somewhat close proximity to NWA might end up helping in a few ways. If homes prices keep going up in NWA I could see more people considering buying a nice home in Ft Smith and then commuting. Although just becoming a bedroom community for NWA isn't going to help a number of aspects. I think even though there are different circumstances it ends up having some of the current problems Springdale has in mainly being just a bedroom community.

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Good points. I keep wondering if Ft Smith is going to be able to get something going to change. I'm just not sure. I almost wonder if it's somewhat close proximity to NWA might end up helping in a few ways. If homes prices keep going up in NWA I could see more people considering buying a nice home in Ft Smith and then commuting. Although just becoming a bedroom community for NWA isn't going to help a number of aspects. I think even though there are different circumstances it ends up having some of the current problems Springdale has in mainly being just a bedroom community.

I think Ft Smith's role as a regional provider of services will help sustain it to some degree. As much as people in NWA hate to admit it Ft Smith provides health care, retail, legal and banking services, etc to a much larger sphere of influence than its MSA population indicates (even larger than NWA) because the nearest cities are a greater distance away. Drive around town and you'll see as many OK plates as AR plates. I think for that reason the Ft Smith area is underserved to a large degree in the same way NWA used to be.

What it is lacking is the corporate presence that it lost with Beverly and that companies like Wal-Mart and Tyson provide for NWA and Alltel, Dillard's, Acxiom, and Stephens provide in LR.

Part of the problem is probably just lack of wealthy innovative investors that you see in Little Rock or NWA. There's nobody with the finances and imagination to embark on these risky projects.

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I admit I don't know too much about Fort Smith.....but I've always been under the impression (from people living there and driving through a few times) that it's a pretty conservative place.

Dickson and RiverMarket seem relatively laid-back, diverse, and well, liberal. At least compared to surrounding areas.

I'm not quite sure if Fort Smith can (as easily) repeat the same feel as Dickson and RiverMarket.

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I admit I don't know too much about Fort Smith.....but I've always been under the impression (from people living there and driving through a few times) that it's a pretty conservative place.

Dickson and RiverMarket seem relatively laid-back, diverse, and well, liberal. At least compared to surrounding areas.

I'm not quite sure if Fort Smith can (as easily) repeat the same feel as Dickson and RiverMarket.

Johnny, you should broaden your view of the world. Downtown revitalization is not an issue to be made into a conservative and liberal dichotomy. If I take away the adverbs and impressionistic verbs from your post, it's easy to see that you don't have anything to add to the discussion. Here is your post in a nutshell, "Fort Smith is conservative, and Dickson Street and the River Market are more liberal; therefore, Fort Smith won't match their success." Is that an accurate representation of your post? If a poster made the comment that conservative neighborhoods were better maintained and had less crime than liberal ones, I wouldn't be surprised to see you respond with an incendiary retort.

Dickson Street's proximity to a major university, as well as the growth of NWA, are responsible for its success. The River Market area has been the primary focus of downtown revitalization in Little Rock, a much larger metropolitan area than Fort Smith. That explains why Fort Smith won't have that "feel," as you say. Also, I don't expect the River Market to resemble like Times Square anytime soon.

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Johnny, you should broaden your view of the world. Downtown revitalization is not an issue to be made into a conservative and liberal dichotomy. If I take away the adverbs and impressionistic verbs from your post, it's easy to see that you don't have anything to add to the discussion. Here is your post in a nutshell, "Fort Smith is conservative, and Dickson Street and the River Market are more liberal; therefore, Fort Smith won't match their success." Is that an accurate representation of your post? If a poster made the comment that conservative neighborhoods were better maintained and had less crime than liberal ones, I wouldn't be surprised to see you respond with an incendiary retort.

Dickson Street's proximity to a major university, as well as the growth of NWA, are responsible for its success. The River Market area has been the primary focus of downtown revitalization in Little Rock, a much larger metropolitan area than Fort Smith. That explains why Fort Smith won't have that "feel," as you say. Also, I don't expect the River Market to resemble like Times Square anytime soon.

We're talking about the "feel" of Dickson and RiverMarket, are we not?

Don't play that game...that ideologies play no effect on the feel of a downtown. It's pretty obvious that it in fact does.

Where are the immediate differences?

Diversity, first of all. Dixon Street's proximity to UA gives it a huge boost in diversity. A large chunk of the minorities in Fayetteville live around there. Same with gays and lesbians.

All you have to do is look at county maps of electoral results, Arkansawyer. I thought it was simple enough for everyone to see, but apparently not. Here's a map:

PurpleAmericaPosterAll50.gif

By Density:

3d_lowangle.gif

Is it merely coincidence that MOST counties containing major cities are bluish-purplish?

No.

As for "success"--read my post again. I said "the feel." If you consider El Dorado's downtown revitilization a success, which it is, then it is very possible to make a success. If you want the feel of Rivermarket or Dixon, with the punkers, skaters (synonymous), blacks, whites, etc.....then it's highly unlikely. Bars, eclectic stores, and creative,artsy places aren't trademarks of conservative areas.

Your first paragraph was irrelevant (since I was talking about feel). Your second paragraph was more on target.

As for your "liberal" neighborhoods are more violent--I wouldn't doubt it. A lot of that violence is ingrained into a minority culture (if it was "white liberal" neighborhoods, I'd be more surprised). But all I have to do is point out that liberal Europe has a much lower violence rate than the comparatively conservative United States. The question is then, what gives? That's a whole 'nother day of discussion.

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We're talking about the "feel" of Dickson and RiverMarket, are we not?

Don't play that game...that ideologies play no effect on the feel of a downtown. It's pretty obvious that it in fact does.

Where are the immediate differences?

Diversity, first of all. Dixon Street's proximity to UA gives it a huge boost in diversity. A large chunk of the minorities in Fayetteville live around there. Same with gays and lesbians.

All you have to do is look at county maps of electoral results, Arkansawyer. I thought it was simple enough for everyone to see, but apparently not. Here's a map:

[image removed]

By Density:

[image removed]

Is it merely coincidence that MOST counties containing major cities are bluish-purplish?

No.

As for "success"--read my post again. I said "the feel." If you consider El Dorado's downtown revitilization a success, which it is, then it is very possible to make a success. If you want the feel of Rivermarket or Dixon, with the punkers, skaters (synonymous), blacks, whites, etc.....then it's highly unlikely. Bars, eclectic stores, and creative,artsy places aren't trademarks of conservative areas.

Your first paragraph was irrelevant (since I was talking about feel). Your second paragraph was more on target.

As for your "liberal" neighborhoods are more violent--I wouldn't doubt it. A lot of that violence is ingrained into a minority culture (if it was "white liberal" neighborhoods, I'd be more surprised). But all I have to do is point out that liberal Europe has a much lower violence rate than the comparatively conservative United States. The question is then, what gives? That's a whole 'nother day of discussion.

You just argued a point that no one was debating: urban areas tend to be more liberal. We're discussing entertainment districts. They're planned, safe, cleaned-up areas in an urban setting.

Anyway, the word "feel" is a very vague word. If you meant to say that you think Fort Smith's entertainment district won't be as diverse, you could have said so. As a side note, Dickson Street is largely filled with the preppy, highfalutin types.

Lastly, the United States may have a higher violent crime rate, but has a lower overall crime rate. I found the following statistics from the Useful Fools blog. Here are the Interpol numbers of crimes per 100,000 people from 2001:

9927 - England and Wales

8572 - Canada

7736 - Germany

6941 - France

4161 - United States

A point to make is the racial breakdown of homicide rates. The homicide offender rate per 100,000 people:

3.4 - White

25.8 - Black

3.2 - Other

The removal of homicides committed by blacks would place the United States' homicide rate below much of Europe.

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You just argued a point that no one was debating: urban areas tend to be more liberal. We're discussing entertainment districts. They're planned, safe, cleaned-up areas in an urban setting.

Anyway, the word "feel" is a very vague word. If you meant to say that you think Fort Smith's entertainment district won't be as diverse, you could have said so. As a side note, Dickson Street is largely filled with the preppy, highfalutin types.

Lastly, the United States may have a higher violent crime rate, but has a lower overall crime rate. I found the following statistics from the Useful Fools blog. Here are the Interpol numbers of crimes per 100,000 people from 2001:

9927 - England and Wales

8572 - Canada

7736 - Germany

6941 - France

4161 - United States

A point to make is the racial breakdown of homicide rates. The homicide offender rate per 100,000 people:

3.4 - White

25.8 - Black

3.2 - Other

The removal of homicides committed by blacks would place the United States' homicide rate below much of Europe.

Like I said, if you consider blacks to be liberal (even though they tend to be socially conservative), then it's not surprising that liberal neighborhoods are more violent. But I guess you really wanted to post it as if I had contested it.

Anyways, a few questions:

1) what defines crime?

2) Do all the countries listed report "crimes" on the same scale? Or is stealing M&Ms the same as murdering someone? Are drunken driving incidents reported in Europe as a "crime"--but not in America? Or vice versa?

3) Who is interpol, and where can I read their statistics?

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Like I said, if you consider blacks to be liberal (even though they tend to be socially conservative), then it's not surprising that liberal neighborhoods are more violent. But I guess you really wanted to post it as if I had contested it.

Anyways, a few questions:

1) what defines crime?

2) Do all the countries listed report "crimes" on the same scale? Or is stealing M&Ms the same as murdering someone? Are drunken driving incidents reported in Europe as a "crime"--but not in America? Or vice versa?

3) Who is interpol, and where can I read their statistics?

I know that you said minority neighborhoods are more violent. However, you followed that by saying that Europe had a lower crime rate than the more conservative United States, implying that its conservative nature contributed to the crime. Of course minority neighborhoods aren't conservative bastions.

To answer your questions:

1) I've wondered what their definition is as well, and if it is limited to international offenses. Hopefully someone else knows.

2) The crime information that Interpol collects is based on the standards set by that organization.

3) Interpol stands for the International Criminal Police Organization. It's based in France, and it's the world's third-largest international organization (behind the U.N. and FIFA). It helps international police agencies cooperate to solve crimes, e.g. it provides members access to its database.

Hopefully this thread will get back to Fort Smith soon.

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I know that you said minority neighborhoods are more violent. However, you followed that by saying that Europe had a lower crime rate than the more conservative United States, implying that its conservative nature contributed to the crime. Of course minority neighborhoods aren't conservative bastions.

To answer your questions:

1) I've wondered what their definition is as well, and if it is limited to international offenses. Hopefully someone else knows.

2) The crime information that Interpol collects is based on the standards set by that organization.

3) Interpol stands for the International Criminal Police Organization. It's based in France, and it's the world's third-largest international organization (behind the U.N. and FIFA). It helps international police agencies cooperate to solve crimes, e.g. it provides members access to its database.

Hopefully this thread will get back to Fort Smith soon.

I lived in England for a year. People there marveled that Americans didn't have our fruits and vegetables stolen from their gardens. There were frequent bar fights but nobody ever really got seriously hurt. Auto thefts were much more common over there. There were no guns, so robberies and assaults ended with minor injuries at worst and murders were exceptionally rare.

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