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Lowell v. Worcester

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There's some good discussion regarding the Plan E form of government. There couldn't be a more compelling argument for it than Lowell v. Lawrence. Downtown Lawrence looks like a bomb hit it, Lowell has a new ballpark, new arena, artists, lots of new condos. Anyone who talks about crime in Lowell is living in the 80's.

I don't think downtown Worcester is at where downtown Lowell is today, but they seem to be moving in the right direction.

http://www.ci.worcester.ma.us/inthenews.htm

MassINC CommonWealth Growth & Development Extra - 2006

Urban Re-Renewal - by Shaun Sutner (PDF 799KB)

No longer the mothballed commercial and industrial districts of a time gone by, downtowns in Lowell and Worcester are emerging as places to live and play. Read more...

http://www.ci.worcester.ma.us/dev/pdf/UrbanRe-Renewal.pdf

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Probably NOT going to be a popular view but...

I wouldn't get too excited about Downtown Worcester. The pictures look nice, but they still aren't doing much in the way of encouraging anything new downtown. And they are not doing much to improve the economic situation there, either. Worcester is a bit different than Lowell, which has a good public college right downtown, and is a major commuter city for Boston. Worcester doesn't have the nearby college community, people avoid the downtown area, and the city itself is primarily an imigrant/lower to lower middle class city.

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Worcester is most defininitely a middle class city. Most areas in the city are middle class with the lower mid and poor area popping up as in any city.....But the middle, upper middle and wealthy area prevail in Worcester without a doubt. As to the downtown.....its changing....the few urban extension area off of downtown have taken off, and downtown itself is next....wait and see

Probably NOT going to be a popular view but...

I wouldn't get too excited about Downtown Worcester. The pictures look nice, but they still aren't doing much in the way of encouraging anything new downtown. And they are not doing much to improve the economic situation there, either. Worcester is a bit different than Lowell, which has a good public college right downtown, and is a major commuter city for Boston. Worcester doesn't have the nearby college community, people avoid the downtown area, and the city itself is primarily an imigrant/lower to lower middle class city.

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Worcester is most defininitely a middle class city. Most areas in the city are middle class with the lower mid and poor area popping up as in any city.....But the middle, upper middle and wealthy area prevail in Worcester without a doubt. As to the downtown.....its changing....the few urban extension area off of downtown have taken off, and downtown itself is next....wait and see

After reading the report it appears that Worcester is finally trying to develop it's own brand. It needs that. Sure, it'll never be Boston or Providence, but that's because it's not Boston or Providence. Worcester has many great assets and it seems like it might be finally working them to it's advantage. This whole inferiority complex is old and not well deserved. It need not be in anyone's shadow. Having lived there for many years I will admit that I'm a bit on edge about this new development as so many have failed in the past, but this time things seem a bit more promising.

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After reading the report it appears that Worcester is finally trying to develop it's own brand. It needs that. Sure, it'll never be Boston or Providence, but that's because it's not Boston or Providence.

KRC, I think that's the best that's been written here about Worcester. You are damn right there. When you talk to people about Worcester, you always hear "yes, Worcester is on the move, but it will never be like Boston or Providence". Well, Providence is not like Boston, Harford is not like Providence and that's how it should be, every city has its own character.

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I work in Worcester and definitely think it's an underrated city. In comparison to Providence, yes it's not as pretty (although much of Providence is no prettier than much of Worcester) and Worcester is much more spread out to the point of being suburban in several areas. Providence also has more of a hip college feel: Brown and RISD are more progressive and dynamic than Worcester's colleges (good though they may be) and they're right next to each other which enables them to create a critical mass of energy. But on the plus side, Worcester has better public schools and better delivery of govt services. I think these issues jeopardize Providence's "Renaissance" (fancy restaurants and luxury condos only go so far) while Worcester does much better in terms of these fundamentals.

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Worcester itself is a bit lower class than the suburbs which surround it. Yes, there are some high-class areas, which bring the average income level up, but the core parts of the city are fairly lower class. That IS Worcester's style.

I have been wrestling with this notion for a long time. I got real excited about every project that came up, yet none seemed to help. I got realy interested in City place because of QCCs Campus at the Mall, but because I spent time down there, I really noticed that there was more to it than how things were laid out.

Worcester is a working city. It's stuck because it is in an area that has become dominated by the hip revival city thing - all the other cities in New England are seeing resurgences. But the people of Worcester are in Worcester because they don't want that. They still put the working class ideals ahead of the more modern stuff. But even they can't completely hold back - the bio-tech and college industries are still having great influences on it. I believe that Worcester COULD surpass Providence if it wanted to. It's just that that is not what the people of the city want, whether or not that is what I would want. So who gets to make that decision of what it should be?

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