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Mith242

Possible City Merging

City Mergers   18 members have voted

  1. 1. What if any merging would you support?

    • None, leave things as it is.
      3
    • One of the larger cities annexing a smaller town.
      5
    • Two of the larger NWA cities merging.
      4
    • Let's try to merge most of the core cities of the metro.
      6

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17 posts in this topic

I wanted to try to get a discussion going about this. I think some things have come up in other topics before. Generally there might be a mention of maybe annexing some of the smaller Benton County cities like Centerton and such into a larger city like Bentonville. Maybe even a little talk of a possible Bentonville Rogers merger. I think few people could see Fayetteville and Springdale ever merging, but if you were to try to put most of the core of the metro together I think it's a more likely position. But until recently I hadn't given very serious thought about possibly trying to merge most of the core cities into one city. I know initially a lot of people won't like the sound of that. But I think it's possibility that isn't that crazy after all. I admit I don't know all the regulations and such that you'd have to do to pull something off like this. For one I'm pretty sure you have to have everything contiguous. Which would mean you'd need Lowell so you could get Bentonville and Rogers together with Springdale and Fayetteville. That would get just about all the major cities together. I think Bella Vista and Bentonville possibly touch. But I don't know if Bella Vista would join in just having incorporated not too long ago, but it's another possibility further into the future. Now each city has it's own 'vibe' and sets of rules and regulations. But I don't think you'd have to get rid of much of it. Each city could operate as a borough. It's basically how New York City came about with it's boroughs. I think that would provide a way for each city to keep a lot of it's current operations as is. For that matter I believe you could set it up so that you could try to keep most of the power into the boroughs themselves. For a long time almost all the power in London was in it's boroughs themselves, not the city as a whole. That way although you do have a city government over the core of the metro it still allows flexibility in the current cities as boroughs. Then comes the question from some people why bother at all. I think we do need to start thinking at a larger level to help the metro grow. In one way or other either all the cities need to start working together more or something. If not then it's going to take even longer to get regional projects like a 412 bypass or a possible western beltway or any other large project that deals with a more than one of the cities. Some might prefer just setting up some regional commissions and handling matters that way. I can see that line of thinking, but I think one of the problems with that is that will any of these regional commissions ever have enough authority to really get matters done? If you put Bentonville, Rogers, Centerton, Springdale and Fayetteville together you'd have a little over 200,000 people by current estimates. Considerably more if somehow this ever did come about. I just think a single direct city government representing over 200,000 would be more likely to achieve some of the goals needed. Now having said that I realize there's a lot of more complex issues being ignored that would complicate matters. I'd also have to say I don't necessarily expect much will probably come of this. But I still wanted to throw the idea out there. See what people had to say. For that matter this topic doesn't have to just be about merging all the cities. Some talk of other smaller mergers would be welcome as well.

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Man you hit this spot on. I agree they ALL need to merge together. In the end, pooling all of the metro's resources into a single pot gives you more power in growth and a more cohesive marketing message. It would be a HUGE win for the region. HUUUUUGGEEE!!!

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I would like to at least see a Rogers-Bentonville merger, or a Fayetteville-Springdale merger.

Maybe this doesn't bother some people, but it seems to me that many outside of the state don't take this region seriously because the most populated city is Fayetteville, which is home to around 68,000.

If Fayetteville and Springdale merged you would create a true center for the metro and I think you would also lure more upscale businesses (even though I know they always look at MSA more closely), simply by saying, "Fayettedale is home to 140,000 people."

I just think it would help the image of the state in a certain way. We would have another city outside of Little Rock.

This is probably a much too trivial reason. I just have a real distain with how some view poor little impoverished, backward Arkansas.

For people who don't follow these things closely, population is a real measuring stick for a city that can garner immediate respect.

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True there are other aspects like that, that do play a role as well. But I just figured there'd have to be more motive to actually get something like this done. I believe Little Rock and some of the other cities around it have discussed a possible merger for a number of years but nothing has come of it. Although I admit I don't know if any of the talk was serious or not. One potential problem I can see other than a lot of the more obvious. But I keep getting the feel that quite a few people in the metro don't want the metro to feel like it's a bigger city. To make everything feel like it's all just a bunch of suburbs around a bigger city. One thing that comes to mind is that there seems to be a number of people who don't want I-540 more than 4 lanes. I just get the feeling that a number of people want 'cover up' just how big it really is. To some of these people merging these cities together (even just a a couple or a few) and you end up with larger population figures that's going to bother them. It's sort of ironic. I think any other area of the state people want their city to grow and get bigger. But that seems to be an issue in this corner of the state. Either way I still think it's an interesting topic even if nothing ever really comes of it. Maybe there's not really any shot of it happening but I still think it's something that people in our area should think about, even if they don't like the idea of it. Or for that matter maybe I'd like people to address their concerns about it. What aspects of it would people not like.

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True there are other aspects like that, that do play a role as well. But I just figured there'd have to be more motive to actually get something like this done. I believe Little Rock and some of the other cities around it have discussed a possible merger for a number of years but nothing has come of it. Although I admit I don't know if any of the talk was serious or not. One potential problem I can see other than a lot of the more obvious. But I keep getting the feel that quite a few people in the metro don't want the metro to feel like it's a bigger city. To make everything feel like it's all just a bunch of suburbs around a bigger city. One thing that comes to mind is that there seems to be a number of people who don't want I-540 more than 4 lanes. I just get the feeling that a number of people want 'cover up' just how big it really is. To some of these people merging these cities together (even just a a couple or a few) and you end up with larger population figures that's going to bother them. It's sort of ironic. I think any other area of the state people want their city to grow and get bigger. But that seems to be an issue in this corner of the state. Either way I still think it's an interesting topic even if nothing ever really comes of it. Maybe there's not really any shot of it happening but I still think it's something that people in our area should think about, even if they don't like the idea of it. Or for that matter maybe I'd like people to address their concerns about it. What aspects of it would people not like.

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It does seem most people seem to be more in favor in the smaller steps, which is understandable. There has been a little more support for two of the larger cities merging than I expected so far. I wish I could have set it up to ask which combination. I still have a hard time seeing Fayetteville and Springdale merging on their own. The Rogers and Bentonville option just seems more likely. Although I wonder if a Bentonville and Bella Vista option could be possible as well at some point.

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It does seem most people seem to be more in favor in the smaller steps, which is understandable. There has been a little more support for two of the larger cities merging than I expected so far. I wish I could have set it up to ask which combination. I still have a hard time seeing Fayetteville and Springdale merging on their own. The Rogers and Bentonville option just seems more likely. Although I wonder if a Bentonville and Bella Vista option could be possible as well at some point.

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Merging the larger cities is a great idea in theory but in practice will never happen, IMO. The city government, business, church, etc leaders in place in each community have a vested interest in keeping their city separate. While it might be in the communities' best interest to merge, individuals tend to look out for their own interests. It would take a lot of courage for a city leader to stand up and advocate giving up a city's autonomy to a outside interest.

The larger cities merging with (annexing) some of the smaller towns on their borders is also a great idea and seems to happening to some degree. I sure don't mean to offend anyone who is reading this and lives in one of the "suburban" towns but I think it would be in the best interest for towns like Johnson, Greenland, Farmington, Bethel Heights, Centerton, Vaughn to merge with their larger neighbors. The amount of money available for improvements to infrastructure and services would increase for these towns if they merged with their neighbors. There is the economy in scale factor to take into account also- it's cheaper to run one larger police department than two smaller ones together. Often they are already in the same school district so they could keep that part of their idenity, which that seems to be the reason most don't want to merge. Civic pride is important but but having a more livable community is even more so.

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Yeah I would expect a lot of resistance to the idea. Although there are good reasons for joining I think a lot of people would fear that their city could get 'lost' in the larger aspect. Or that their city would end up having to follow the rules and regulation of the other cities and so forth. But that's why I really like the idea of the boroughs and being able to keep much of the government control there. That way you can still have a lot of individuality for each city/borough. But even if there were a lot of receptive people to the idea it would still take quite a few years to ever come about. It's also a big step and if it were to ever come about I think it might be an easier move if some other smaller mergers took place first. A lot of it also has to do with our society as well. You don't see a lot of cities merging here in the US. But go over to Japan and it's very common. After doing a little research I was actually surprised to see just how many of Japan's current cities are the results of merged entities just in the past decade or two. But our society is a lot more individualistic and we tend to place ourselves and our own city first before others. I do find it interesting that if the same situation arose in Japan like how our metro formed, I think there's no question that those cities would have already merged without question by now.

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I think a lot of people totally misunderstand the concept of these mergers or they don't realize there many ways to structure it. Everyone usually believes that, yes, their city more or less dissolves and becomes a part of something new but that's ONLY true in the legal sense. In actuality, many mergers allow the individual cities to maintain the same identity and much of the same governance. I used to not understand this and thought just like everyone else that if you merged NWA, Fayetteville wouldn't exist anymore. But I was wrong and I think if someone had the wherewithall to push this agenda and the capability to adequately explain some of the options then more and more people would actually get on board with it.

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Before any of this could happen, Benton County (or most of Ark) needs to get out of the dark ages and become wet (please don't whine about crime if this would happen because having to travel elsewhere to buy alcohol produces just has many DWI's as a wet county). Having a state lottery wouldn't hurt either (Most of us are tired of giving all our surrounding states our money - Let's Keep it in ARKANSAS). This merger is a good thing to happen if it does. But you will have oppostition for whatever reason for not doing it (probably the same ones that want to keep Benton County dry and and the state lottery free.)

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Before any of this could happen, Benton County (or most of Ark) needs to get out of the dark ages and become wet (please don't whine about crime if this would happen because having to travel elsewhere to buy alcohol produces just has many DWI's as a wet county). Having a state lottery wouldn't hurt either (Most of us are tired of giving all our surrounding states our money - Let's Keep it in ARKANSAS). This merger is a good thing to happen if it does. But you will have opposition for whatever reason for not doing it (probably the same ones that want to keep Benton County dry and and the state lottery free.)

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Fayetteville needs to annex Elkins too. Stop the small town bickering and the good ol boy nonsense. But annexation of the smaller towns by the big cities will never happen. The politicians will never give up their kingdoms.

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I like the idea of mergers and regional government, but I think there are some considerations to keep in mind when discussing it for this area. I am speaking more specifically of mergers than regional government and forgive me if I am incorrect on anything.

A merger between Bentonville and Rogers wouldn't likely happen because Bentonville is a power city and Rogers isn't. Bentonville has its own electric utility I doubt they'd want to give that up.

Bentonville and Bella Vista is not likely either. Bentonville city leaders toyed with the idea of annexing Bella Vista for a long time. However, Bella Vista's infrastructure needed/s major investment and just didn't seem worth the trouble. Interestingly, Lake Bella Vista is in the Bentonville city limits.

Centerton and Bentonville absolutely hate each other. The two cities have gotten into a peeing contest over annexing SW toward XNA. Johnny Height at Centerton used to work for Bentonville and there was big falling out. I think he ended up running for mayor against Coberly. Its a big mess... Needless to say there is A LOT of bad blood there.

Fayetteville and Springdale are probably not likely as said. These cities are just about polar opposite and very different visions of themselves.

I'm not familiar enough with other instances to really say what would happen otherwise.

The biggest thing any of the larger cities have going for them with regards to luring in a smaller city for a merger are services, be that better fire protection, cleaner water, etc.

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I like the idea of mergers and regional government, but I think there are some considerations to keep in mind when discussing it for this area. I am speaking more specifically of mergers than regional government and forgive me if I am incorrect on anything.

A merger between Bentonville and Rogers wouldn't likely happen because Bentonville is a power city and Rogers isn't. Bentonville has its own electric utility I doubt they'd want to give that up.

Bentonville and Bella Vista is not likely either. Bentonville city leaders toyed with the idea of annexing Bella Vista for a long time. However, Bella Vista's infrastructure needed/s major investment and just didn't seem worth the trouble. Interestingly, Lake Bella Vista is in the Bentonville city limits.

Centerton and Bentonville absolutely hate each other. The two cities have gotten into a peeing contest over annexing SW toward XNA. Johnny Height at Centerton used to work for Bentonville and there was big falling out. I think he ended up running for mayor against Coberly. Its a big mess... Needless to say there is A LOT of bad blood there.

Fayetteville and Springdale are probably not likely as said. These cities are just about polar opposite and very different visions of themselves.

I'm not familiar enough with other instances to really say what would happen otherwise.

The biggest thing any of the larger cities have going for them with regards to luring in a smaller city for a merger are services, be that better fire protection, cleaner water, etc.

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