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Aporkalypse

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Where should we start.

Ah, why don't we start with any problems that LR Forumers see in the city. What would you like to see changed in the city, and how would you fix the problems.

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I think one of the major problems with LR is a lack of vision. The last time they came up with a plan for the future they didn't follow it. It is though LR does one thing, NLR does another and LR; west, midtown and downtown are going in different directions.

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Where should we start.

Ah, why don't we start with any problems that LR Forumers see in the city. What would you like to see changed in the city, and how would you fix the problems.

I think we need a better mayoral system and a better mayor. I've always been envious of Patrick Henry Hays and what he's done with NLR. Dailey's not a bad guy and his vision regarding downtown is admirable, he's just not the strong leader with the presense of a Hays.

I would like to see a small sales tax to work on infrastructure, especially roads and parks. With some of that money I think the city needs to modernize, improve and expand the zoo which is really a shadow of what it once was. War Memorial's Golf Course isn't much to be proud of, a complete redo of War Memorial Park could really become a jewel of the city. This is going to be important as time goes on and University Mall shuts down a revamp of Midtown is going to become critical to maintaining Central LR.

I'd like to see a bigger corporate presence and a city and state gov't more aggressive about pursuing employers.

Obviously, like everyone else I'd like to see a continued revamping of downtown to the point all of it is walkable and safe with a sizable residential population. I want to see more developers involved than just Moses and Tucker, which is starting to happen.

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I think we need a better mayoral system and a better mayor. I've always been envious of Patrick Henry Hays and what he's done with NLR. Dailey's not a bad guy and his vision regarding downtown is admirable, he's just not the strong leader with the presense of a Hays.

I would like to see a small sales tax to work on infrastructure, especially roads and parks. With some of that money I think the city needs to modernize, improve and expand the zoo which is really a shadow of what it once was. War Memorial's Golf Course isn't much to be proud of, a complete redo of War Memorial Park could really become a jewel of the city. This is going to be important as time goes on and University Mall shuts down a revamp of Midtown is going to become critical to maintaining Central LR.

I'd like to see a bigger corporate presence and a city and state gov't more aggressive about pursuing employers.

Obviously, like everyone else I'd like to see a continued revamping of downtown to the point all of it is walkable and safe with a sizable residential population. I want to see more developers involved than just Moses and Tucker, which is starting to happen.

I'd love to see War Memorial golf course given to the zoo for future expansion. With the Clinton Library, Heifer's new HQ's - which is supposed to draw more tourists than the Clinton Library once their global village is completed - a first class zoo could really help turn Little Rock into a weekend destination.

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I'd love to see War Memorial golf course given to the zoo for future expansion. With the Clinton Library, Heifer's new HQ's - which is supposed to draw more tourists than the Clinton Library once their global village is completed - a first class zoo could really help turn Little Rock into a weekend destination.

I would like to see the zoo upgraded, also. Students from all over the state go to the zoo why can't the state provide funding for the zoo? It would have been nice if the Nature Center had located at the zoo instead of the River Market.

You cannot compare the Mayors of LR/NLR. NLR's mayor has the power and LR's doesn't. LR is run by the city manager.

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I would like to see the zoo upgraded, also. Students from all over the state go to the zoo why can't the state provide funding for the zoo? It would have been nice if the Nature Center had located at the zoo instead of the River Market.

You cannot compare the Mayors of LR/NLR. NLR's mayor has the power and LR's doesn't. LR is run by the city manager.

That was my point, we need to scrap the city manager system and go to a strong mayor system.

I agree about the zoo. I think we should close the golf course or at least reduce it to 9 holes and use some of the land for the zoo and some to build tennis courts, a short trail, and other amenities. I hadn't thought about the Nature Center but that would've been a good idea to incorporate. Ray Winder could be incorporated into the park once the Travs leave for downtown. Frankly, the golf course is not much to talk about and pales in comparison to Burns Park's courses in NLR or especially to Rebsamen's courses which are country club quality with beautiful scenery.

In any case, I think any midtown revival should make War Memorial Park and the Zoo centerpieces. Regarding the zoo, it was one of the nicest mid-sized zoos in the country until the 1970s and it's been in slow decline. Lack of strong corporate or private sponsorship has been a big reason. I remember the Friends of the Zoo debacle a few years back, the organization was at odds with the zoo and a big grant from the Sturgis Foundation was lost because of it. I'd like to see some of Arkansas' big private donors take on the zoo as a personal project and have it named after them if need be. The $50 million Stephens gave for the spine center could've really turned the zoo into a first class place, especially if matched with tax money.

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Interesting idea putting the nature center by the zoo. It would be nice to see the zoo improved. I'm pretty sure there isn't another one in the state. There's a couple of those drive through wildlife areas up here in NWA but they just don't compare. I haven't been to the zoo in over a decade. I'm sorry to hear it hasn't fared too well.

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Interesting idea putting the nature center by the zoo. It would be nice to see the zoo improved. I'm pretty sure there isn't another one in the state. There's a couple of those drive through wildlife areas up here in NWA but they just don't compare. I haven't been to the zoo in over a decade. I'm sorry to hear it hasn't fared too well.

The original zoo was built during the Works Progress Administration era in the depression. That's when all of those classy old stone structures were erected. I like the architecture, it just needs modernization. They're making good use of the funds they have, it's just that they're putting in new exhibits. There's no money left for building or updating current buildings.

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The original zoo was built during the Works Progress Administration era in the depression. That's when all of those classy old stone structures were erected. I like the architecture, it just needs modernization. They're making good use of the funds they have, it's just that they're putting in new exhibits. There's no money left for building or updating current buildings.

I agree that they are doing the best they can. The zoo has so much potential, though, I'd love to see it get some outside support. I really believe Little Rock is at a place now that it could support a regionally competitive zoo.

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I agree that they are doing the best they can. The zoo has so much potential, though, I'd love to see it get some outside support. I really believe Little Rock is at a place now that it could support a regionally competitive zoo.

The thing is, we had a regionally competitive zoo. At one point it was supposedly better than Memphis and similar zoos, we just stopped supporting it and nothing changed for 2 or 3 decades. We need to bring it back and make it an issue of community pride. This my be controversial but I think the state and county could kick in some funds as well. It's the only zoo in Arkansas and on any given day other than summer vacation the parking lots are full of buses of kids from school districts from most of the state on field trips. We need to do a little better for them.

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I can see your point there Aporkalypse, but aren't you worried at all what the Heifer International Village will have on the Little Rock Zoo?

Not Aporkalypse, but I don't think it will do anything but enhance the zoo's attendance. The International Village isn't a "zoo," although I guess you could say it will be similar. With all the tourists it will draw, all of whom would seem to be the type to be interested in a zoo, I think it could be quite a boon if the leadership approaches it correctly.

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Not Aporkalypse, but I don't think it will do anything but enhance the zoo's attendance. The International Village isn't a "zoo," although I guess you could say it will be similar. With all the tourists it will draw, all of whom would seem to be the type to be interested in a zoo, I think it could be quite a boon if the leadership approaches it correctly.

I agree, they're not at all in competition.

There already is a Global Village in Perryville at HI's farm. There are a variety of different 3rd World homes and kids get to spend the night there and live as they do to see what it's like. There will be some animals typical of those used in farming in these countries but it won't be a zoo at all. The same argument could be made of aquariums, I guess, but aquariums never seem to adversely affect zoo attendance.

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My keyword regarding all development- synergy. Building, remodeling, updating, all of these elements create a synergy that allows projects to build upon each other. This is why comprehensive planning is done, however there is a difference between good planning and poor planing. I agree the Zoo should be made a priority, however it is what is happening around Midtown, and specifically War Memorial that should play a key role in how it is accomplished. The midtown task force is examining all of these issues, however once again it will likely require an influx of private funds to make things happen. Where the city needs to step in is with a well thought out long term plan to integrate these elements, instead of the knee jerk reaction to the developments.

synergy: [noun] a mutually advantageous conjunction of distinct elements

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synergy: [noun] a mutually advantageous conjunction of distinct elements

I agree. The more attractions you have to visit, the more likely it becomes someone will drive there to visit and get a room to stay the weekend.

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Anyone that knows anything about the Woodall Rogers Freeway cap/park in Dallas can answer this. What is the cost on this project? Would this work on parts of I-630 in LR? I was thinking the downtown and midtown areas.

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Anyone that knows anything about the Woodall Rogers Freeway cap/park in Dallas can answer this. What is the cost on this project? Would this work on parts of I-630 in LR? I was thinking the downtown and midtown areas.

I'm not sure how much it costs but it is terribly expensive. Dallas is spending a lot of money on the highways near downtown trying to beautify the area, including redoing the bridges over the Trinity River with large, sculptural bridges with dramatic arches and flooding the area to create a long, lake similar in size to the AR River. If we were going to do either, I'd rather have the bridges redone in LR than having than a park put over the freeway. The I-30 bridge needs widening anyway. I have a feeling that park would develop into a homeless camp within a few mos of opening anyway. People expect the one in Dallas to but the location of I-630 would make that likely.

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Seattle did something I think similar to what your talking about in was it the 90's? on I-90 east of downtown. That is, putting a cap over the freeway and making a park/landscaped areas in some of the neighborhoods.

Kansas City did real nice landscaping/design of several overpasses over the new Hwy 71 freeway (south from downtown to the 'Triangle'). That could be cool for I-630, since it's mostly a depressed freeway between downtown and midtown. (couldn't find a link)

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Seattle did something I think similar to what your talking about in was it the 90's? on I-90 east of downtown. That is, putting a cap over the freeway and making a park/landscaped areas in some of the neighborhoods.

Kansas City did real nice landscaping/design of several overpasses over the new Hwy 71 freeway (south from downtown to the 'Triangle'). That could be cool for I-630, since it's mostly a depressed freeway between downtown and midtown. (couldn't find a link)

I agree, something like US 71 in KC or like US 75 (Central Expressway) in Dallas would be great for I-630. I'd love to see that happen at some point. It needs to be 8 laned at some point and the interchange with I-430 needs to be redone badly.

I lived in KC one summer. The fountains, sculpture, and aesthetically-designed freeways and roads added a lot to that city. I expected very little but ended up really liking the place.

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Anyone that knows anything about the Woodall Rogers Freeway cap/park in Dallas can answer this. What is the cost on this project? Would this work on parts of I-630 in LR? I was thinking the downtown and midtown areas.

I know that its very expensive and I believe a combination of public and private funds will be used to pay for it--if it happens.

The Woodall-Rogers freeway canyon was built pretty deep in the section considered for decking, and I've heard that it was built with eventually decking it in mind.

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I can't say I'm familiar with many of these roadways being mentioned but they sound interesting. It also sounds like some interesting ideas for Little Rock to look into. I never knew Kansas City had roadways like the ones mentioned. I've seen some cities out west like Albuquerque and Santa Fe that have also been making improvements on their roads. They are making them aesthetically-deisgned, not sure if they are doing it like Kansas City though. But I think even little things would be a nice improvement for the city.

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I can't say I'm familiar with many of these roadways being mentioned but they sound interesting. It also sounds like some interesting ideas for Little Rock to look into. I never knew Kansas City had roadways like the ones mentioned. I've seen some cities out west like Albuquerque and Santa Fe that have also been making improvements on their roads. They are making them aesthetically-deisgned, not sure if they are doing it like Kansas City though. But I think even little things would be a nice improvement for the city.

Here's a link to a Dallas board discussing the Woodall Rogers freeway park.

http://forum.dallasmetropolis.com/showthread.php?t=2202

The Dallas Forum is very active, and explains why there aren't many Texas related posts on UrbanPlanet.

There's a ton going on in Dallas right now. Check out the Victory development and the Trinity River project.

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