Archive for October, 2005

by (RSS) Uncategorized | October 31st, 2005 2:24pm CDT | Comments Off on Chicago Shows How To Use Grand, New Park To Gain International Attention

From Boston Globe: There’s something for everyone at the beautiful, civilized Millennium Park CHICAGO — This city’s new Millennium Park is the best urban public park I’ve ever seen, anywhere, and that includes some famed ones in places like Rotterdam and Paris. The downside for Bostonians comes when you compare it to what we can […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | October 30th, 2005 4:54pm CDT | Comments Off on Atlanta Looks To Expand Its Parks While Memphis And Shelby County Go The Other Way

From New York Times: An ‘Emerald Necklace’ May Grace Urban Atlanta City leaders are looking to transform an abandoned 22-mile railroad loop into a civic jewel of parks and public transit. ATLANTA — Kudzu smothers the old steel tracks. Broken bottles, chairs and grills litter the gray wooden crossties, and rusty chain-link fencing flanks each […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | October 28th, 2005 1:57am CDT | Comments Off on Diversity Is About Seeing The World In More Than Black And White

Yesterday, Leadership Memphis concentrated on a provocative question, “What Makes a Great City?” and it heard from a highly informative panel of five local leaders, from a noted national urban observer, and from Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper, named as one of Time’s five best mayors in the U.S. Opinions were personal, impassioned and always illuminating. […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | October 28th, 2005 1:16am CDT | Comments Off on Nashville Mayor Wraps Up His Legacy In Two Terms

From Nashville Tennessean: Mayor Bill Purcell set about the business of establishing his legacy yesterday, telling his cabinet to use the next 22 months to “get ‘er done” on sidewalks, courthouse renovations and the other major projects of his administration. Twenty-two months, the time he has left as mayor of Nashville, is plenty for them […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | October 27th, 2005 1:12am CDT | Comments Off on The City’s Budget Crisis Calls For Honest Answers

City government has dug a financial hole that an elephant could fall into, and that’s only fitting, because there is an elephant in the room every time the city’s budgetary collapse is discussed. First, the hole. With this week’s announcement that the deficit for the fiscal year is two and half times larger than announced […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | October 25th, 2005 1:40am CDT | Comments Off on Shelby County Government Sees Green, But It’s Not The Green Of Neighborhood Parks

In last Thursday’s blog, “Lack Of A Green Vision Leaves The City’s Reputation Black and Blue,” we were critical of Memphis Mayor Herenton’s plans to sell neighborhood parks at a time when they are needed as pivotal anchors for urban neighborhoods’ health. In the interest of equal time, we need to acknowledge that Mayor Herenton […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | October 24th, 2005 1:28am CDT | Comments Off on Tennessee Waltz, Like Katrina, Shows Racial Fault Lines

Hurricane Katrina was an event that revealed clearly the fissures that exist in the divergent world views of whites and African-Americans. Tennessee Waltz is another. Here, white Commercial Appeal editorial writers flippantly dismiss African-American questions about the fairness of the federal investigation as off-base and without merit. In their responses, an FBI spokesman and a […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | October 23rd, 2005 7:40pm CDT | Comments Off on Nashville Mayor Won’t Run For Third Term, Saying Two Terms Keep A Mayor Focused

From the Nashville Tennessean: Mayor Bill Purcell said yesterday he will not seek a third term of office, ending months of speculation and creating a wide-open field for the August 2007 race for his successor. The timing of Purcell’s decision not to seek re-election caught some of the city’s political guard by surprise. The announcement […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | October 21st, 2005 1:08am CDT | Comments Off on Overton Park Expressway Memories Triggered By Walnut Grove Road Bridge Project

You can forgive environmentalists for flashbacks to the Overton Park expressway controversy in the 1970’s as they watch the relentless push to to construct the massive Walnut Grove Road/Humphreys Boulevard redesign although a final decision hasn’t even been reached on the alignment and design of Kirby-Whitten Road through Shelby Farms Park. The city’s single-minded attitude […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | October 20th, 2005 1:50am CDT | Comments Off on Lack Of A Green Vision Leaves The City’s Reputation Black and Blue

There is an aphorism in local government that goes like this: “There’s always money for anything the mayor wants to do.” It doesn’t matter if the deficit is growing, it doesn’t matter if the budget is out of balance and it doesn’t matter which way the winds of controversy are blowing. If a mayor wants […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | October 19th, 2005 1:29am CDT | Comments Off on Disaster Preparedness Begins With Knowing Who’s In Charge

If officials in the Capitol are confused about the role of Homeland Security and the role of FEMA, they’re not alone. The same goes here. In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, elected officials sought to reassure us that we should not worry, because in Memphis, we have a plan and people in charge. We’ve been […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | October 18th, 2005 1:36am CDT | Comments Off on It’s Time To Give The Film Commission The Incentives It Needs

Last week, the Tennessee Film Commission held a hearing in Memphis that focused on the need for tax incentives for film companies in our state. Chief among the witnesses was Linn Sitler, executive director of the Memphis and Shelby County Film Commission, who competes against states every day that offer incentives in the form of […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | October 17th, 2005 1:09am CDT | Comments Off on Here’s Hoping The Moratorium Inspires New Thinking On Other Fronts

In a week when the Shelby County Board of Commissioners took a landmark vote to end “business as usual” and enact a moratorium on development, it was disappointing to see more of the same on two other fronts — the Memphis Regional Chamber and the Memphis City Schools Board. The week began with the first […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | October 16th, 2005 1:04am CDT | Comments Off on The Clock Is Ticking Loudly In Rove’s Ear

Mr. Rove, meet Mr. Haldeman. Or Mr. Adams. Or Mr. Lance. Or Mr. Sununu. Karl Rove continues to hang on for dear life following yet another date with the grand jury to testify about his Valerie Plame leak. Even owning the negatives isn’t likely to keep him from soon being the good soldier and falling […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | October 15th, 2005 10:47am CDT | Comments Off on Better Suburban Planning Needed To Curb Obesity

From the Globe and Mail, Toronto: It’s time to shift the focus from blaming individuals for being fat to understanding how the environment we live in discourages healthy living, a scientific think tank has concluded. “We need to look well beyond getting more gym classes for kids and better food in school cafeterias,” said Diane […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | October 15th, 2005 12:20am CDT | Comments Off on What to Do Now: An Addendum

Sixteen bullet points makes for a full Memphis agenda. (See “Kicking the Addiction to Tax Freezes.”) But here are four more to make it 20. Examine City, County and MLGW Compensation and Pension Systems and Report Their Status Annually. This one is obvious. If Memphis Tomorrow is looking for something to do, forget the efficiency […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | October 13th, 2005 1:47am CDT | Comments Off on Sometimes You Just Can’t Improve On Mother Nature

Sometimes the best thing you can do is to admit that an idea, although well-intended, just doesn’t work. One of those ideas is the observation platform built at the tip of Ashburn-Coppock Park at the current southern terminus of the Bluffwalk. It probably seemed a good idea at the time. After all, the park offered […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | October 12th, 2005 1:20am CDT | Comments Off on Charting A Wi-Fi Future

In the beginning was the dial-up. Then dial-up begat DSL, and DSL begat the cable modem. And now, we have arrived in the land of milk and honey…and Wi-Fi. The problem is that Memphians will probably have to travel to other cities to take optimal advantage of it. While Wi-Fi is hardly the new, new […]

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