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Viewing 15 posts - 331 through 345 (of 373 total)
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  • in reply to: Buckeye Vodka #438322

    goldenidea
    Participant

    Nida’s Thai on High, a restaurant in the Short North, sells a drink called the “Bangkok Buckeye”. It’s a chocolate & peanut-flavored martini which, true to many things Thai, packs some heat too. It very yummy and rather popular.

    in reply to: Former Liquid Space in Short North to Become Plasma Donation Center #312142

    goldenidea
    Participant

    I have a hard time believing that the cigar shop will be viable. Didn’t the cigar fad end back before Y2K? I don’t get out as much as I used to, but I haven’t noticed a resurgence.

    Who smokes cigars anymore, especially in the bicycle popular and vegan-frendly Short North? Maybe when the cigar shop fails that space becomes bloodbank unit 3 on the block.

    in reply to: Natural Gas Drilling / Fracking in Ohio #426002

    goldenidea
    Participant

    Gasland is a slanted documentary that, at the very least, borders on being propaganda. I suggest not giving too much attention to an art-school educated film maker that implies he’s being objective in his portrayal a complex geotechnical process and its impacts. While the film is artful, it lacks any science, engineering, or even statistics behind its implied conclusions.

    Anyone who would base an important personal financial decision (like leasing vs. not leasing), or anyone who might create energy or environmental policy, or even form opinion on these matters, on the basis of this film alone is ill-informed and foolish. Give me a camera and I-phone, six months off, a credit card to buy gas, and a good soundtrack and I’ll find the right people and places to make a film that convinces you there are aliens living among us.

    in reply to: Weinland Park Food District #409456

    goldenidea
    Participant

    Labi, the map of “potential gardens” DOES look like it’s just a map of existing vacant lots, doesn’t it. It even lacks the largest existing community garden, the one just east of Goodman Guild on Sixth Street. And recently there’s been a big garden developed on the south end of the Goodman lot, that’s also not on the map.

    At first, I had doubts about this idea, but the more I think about it, the more I like it. First, I do think a farmers’ market is something that is needed, and so is a restaurant. While the North Market and existing area grocery stores serve that need, there’s nothing like that on the east side of the Short North, and that area will soon have even more residences after Wagonbrenners develop the Coated Fabrics lot. Also, knowing some of the people in Weinland, I think there may be some great gardeners in that area, and also some well experienced food service people.

    This kind of enterprise could help to pull many people together in the area in a really benefical way. It could give them a more positive identity and an opportunity they can rally around. It’s the kind of business that people can more easily get involved in than something requiring more education or detailed specialized training. Food has universal interest and appeal.

    in reply to: Weinland Park Food District #409455

    goldenidea
    Participant

    Thank you Walker. It’s impressive how much territory you cover so quickly!

    Labi, you are quite right, it is just a plan and that occured to me just after I posted. But given the situation, it IS a fairly significant plan and I think a very significant location. What happens at that site can readily impact all surrounding neighborhoods, especially areas directly north and the east of it.

    I’m with you, I like the old buildings, but wouldn’t object to a more modern-looking replacment. Design aspects aside, what do you think of the bigger idea? Building a large farmer’s market and a restaurant; stocked in part by locally grown produce and hopefully staffed by locals? Will that be economically viable and will it be adopted by the larger Short North community? To me, that’s an issue meriting some discussion here, even in the early planning stage.

    in reply to: Weinland Park Food District #409449

    goldenidea
    Participant

    coolbuckeye wrote >>
    Just hope some of the 20 jobs that are created go to current residents. I think its a great use for that building.

    Have development details for the farmers market and restaurant complex been revealed? From previous news and discussions, I didn’t think they were planning to use any of the existing buildings on the lot. I was under the impression this project would be like Coated Fabrics, i.e. a complete demolition, site clearance and enviro-restoration, then construction of a new structure(s).

    I think some of the existing building have some architectual and historic value, but I suspect it would be too costly to try to utilize any of that, as was the case with Coated Fabrics.

    Another thing: I’m curious why this Dispatch news release on the 3M site wasn’t featured as a headline in CU or at least archived in the Weinland Park file on CU. This is a pretty significant, $1M-plus project located just blocks from High Street and campus, and is also located in the Short North. There was also a smaller Dispatch article that came out a few weeks ago discussing the demolition of two vacant but relatively large apartment buildings at N4th St and E 8th Ave that also did not get posted to CU. That too is a rather significant event in Weinland Park’s path towards revitialization. It would be nice to see both of these articles cited and archived on CU. Perhaps it is and I’m missing it?

    Walker, are you reading this? It would be nice to see this news picked up. TIA!

    in reply to: Comfest 2010 #383048

    goldenidea
    Participant

    The perspective of this 25-yr resident of VV and 9-yr-community running food merchant is that this seems like yet another outstanding ComFest. The early closings seems to have reduced the number of really drunk people, though the the rain also probably contributed to this. (I’m not in favor of early closing but it if helps, that’s OK.) The increase in cops doesn’t seem to have have had any adverse impacts on the good time. Sales are off a tad, but sales have been off since Pride moved to the week before. Plenty hot, but what’s not to like? One slight bummer was that the gazebo beer tent ran out of Columbus products well before the close. And I didn’t get any additional Labatt for my one black token. And the line-wait was a good half-hour. Oh well, can’t have everything!

    It’s really great to be able to park my motorcycle on the cap! That makes for very easy ins and outs.; any time, day or night!

    in reply to: Weinland Park Neighbors #314039

    goldenidea
    Participant

    Anybody hear anything new w/r to what’s going on in WP??? Just trying to keep up with it all… Thanks!

    in reply to: Weinland Park Neighbors #314037

    goldenidea
    Participant

    I agree that under normal market conditions, WP would now readily gentrify, but because of all of the subsidied housing initatives, it is not as simple and easy as it could and should be.

    The City is against the casino being located in the Arena District, close to the Short North. For the same reasons (crime being a big one), the City should be against concentrating a majority of low-income people in a neighborhood close to the valuable Short North and University District neighborhoods. But, instead, they are working against gentrification.

    in reply to: Weinland Park Neighbors #314035

    goldenidea
    Participant

    <There doesn’t seem to be much thought of mixing the two ideas. There is already ample opportunity for social service agencies to peddle their wares with 20 to 25 percent Section 8 housing already and with 25 percent vacant (or whatever number we have this week) ample opportunity to increase economic diversity in the neighborhood.>

    <The idea of WP becoming appealing to middle income individuals is greeted with extreme hostility from everyone EXCEPT those who live there and do not rely on it for their income/livelihood. >

    I’ve never understood why they don’t allow or even encourage gentrification into the mix. The neighborhood really, really needs the presence of better-educated and more law-abiding and law-accepting people RIGHT NOW. I’m not optimistic that the plan to raise the capabilities or social standing of the existing residents will work by itself, in a setting where low-income residents predominate. That’s never worked in the past.

    This neighborhood sits in the midst of both the Short North and University District. Were it to gentrify, even partially, it could easily become an a much bigger asset to the city and its social and tax-base as has all of the housing to the south and much of the housing to the west of it. To pass on an opporunity to raise that social and tax-base to instead pursue a social laboratory experiment is squandering the future of a very key locale in the city. To me, that’s bad planning. There are plenty of low-income neighborhoods in other areas of the city away from the Short North and the UD where they could experiment with no consequence if they fail. Failing in WP results in a big missed opportunity, and it ignores, and even works against, that which the “free market” (i.e. the economic desires of people-at-large working in a democracy) would naturally create there. This seems pretty obvious, so Berdawn’s arguement is strong, that it’s all about the money to be made pursuing these subsidies and programs.

    in reply to: Mixologist: Vivian Loh of Nida’s Thai on High #363275

    goldenidea
    Participant

    Not only does Viv make some of the best, most innovative martinis and cocktails in town, Nida’s now has wine and sake too. Way to go Viv… & Nida.

    in reply to: Weinland Park Neighbors #314032

    goldenidea
    Participant

    NONE of the properties currently being considered are market rate or owner-occupied. The new homes being built by Waggenbrenner are tax-credit units available to those making up to 150% of area median income (~40K for a family of three, IIRC) and will not be sold for 20 years. The other units, badly designed and of questionable workmanship, would be owner occupied, but only available to low-income families, of which there are already an abundance in WP.

    I’m going to post w/o reading the last page of most recent posts…

    There’s a couple of things with this strategy that Berdawn is describing (and it may be totally accurate) that just don’t seem to make sense.

    First, Northside Development tried for a number of years to build reasonably nice infills and to sell them to low-income but qualified families. That effort was a dismal failure, because, from what I could tell, not even low-income people wanted to voluntarily invest and move into this neighborhood under existing circumstances.

    Second, after the worst lending meltdown of our lives, who’s going to finance these sub-prime deals for the buyers? (I have to assume the answer to this question is “us taxpayers”)

    Third, if Waggenbrenner doesn’t take any initiative to improve the demographics of the neighborhood, by bring in at least some competent outside, non-low-income owner-occupants, how will the neighborhood ever improve and if it doesn’t improve how will they ever sell many houses?

    From what I know of the plan (as described) and from what I’ve seen in the neighborhood over the past 8 years, this approach is not likely to do anything but waste capital and keep the neigbhborhood depressed. Hopefully, this isn’t what is going to happen, as I just don’t see it ever working.

    in reply to: Olentangy Multi-use trail to close between Weber and Patterson #333637

    goldenidea
    Participant

    Recognizing that having this segment of the bike trail closed has been trying, on the positive side, taking the detour up to and along High Street in Clintonville has been a great experience for me. That segement of High Street is really coming along. There’s been lots of interesting things to see and experience. I may continue to take the detour route from time to time, even after the bike path segement re-opens.

    in reply to: Weinland Park Neighbors #314025

    goldenidea
    Participant

    One is that there was so much mortgage fraud here in the recent past – people using false appraisals to get $150,000 mortgages on houses whose real market value should have been more like $65,000. So banks that foreclose on those properties place the sale prices way too high.

    Perhaps a few years ago, at the start of the meltdown, banks repossed and marketed over-inflated props, at still over-inflated prices but those days are long gone. Now-a-day, banks buy props at Sheriff sales for what they lent (which is still a lot higher than anyone else will pay) and then sell them for next to nothing and take the loss. That’s where much of the bail out money went, to cover those bank losses. I think if you look at sales in the MLS, you’ll see very few, if any WP props selling above even $50K. Waggenbrenners don’t pay nearly that much.

    The landbanked props, at least historically, have been in much worse shape the foreclosures, but few will touch them because there’s too much work needed to get them running again and too many other better options to buy instead.

    So every absentee landlord now feels they’re sitting on a gold mine and even if they want to sell their ridiculously dilapidated property they think it’s worth $70,000. Hard to price out a gut rehab that will be economically feasible with that starting point.

    I think that the gold mine mentality has existed since the early 2000s or even earlier, before CPO announced they were buying Broadstreet, and before Columbus Schools announced they were replacing the school. The Wagenbrenner initative is just the most recent planned activity drawing attention to the neighborhood. I think most investors price high when selling, both now and before, to see if there’s any suckers out there, not so much because they actually think their props are worth what they list them at. Most long-holding investors know that this neighborhood won’t turn overnight with or without whatever Waggenbrenners are planning.

    in reply to: Weinland Park Neighbors #314024

    goldenidea
    Participant

    Let’s see- 800 homes in WP. 25% Section 8 currently- that’s 200. Adding 30 more homes boosts the Section 8 homes by 15%, a significant amount IMHO.

    Based on long-term casual observation (~8 yrs), I’d venture that the number of Section 8 units in WP is quite a bit higher than 25%. Just adding CPO units and JR Haller units might get to that percentage. I also suggest that nearly everyone living in WP (I’d venture 90%+) is receiving some kind of govenment or social service check to help pay for most of their housing and other living costs. Those other units containing people “on a check” might as well be Section 8 from the basis of what the represent to the neighborhood. So MAYBE there’s 10% of the total units occupied by people who work and/or go to school. People who are totally self-supporting.

    My point is while those 30 parcels now owned by Wagenbrenner may be statistically significant, looking at the backdrop of the neighborhood, their fate will not impact those statistics if they (stay) Section 8. HOWEVER, what is important is that were these houses to become market rate, they would go a long way to helping to turn the neighborhood b/c they would bring in SORELY NEEDED self-supporting people. One or so active families per block can start to turn the tide, I’m convinced of that.

    I can’t help but think that Wagenbrenners know this and would be inclined to support that “turn” unless it’s so easy to make big bucks staying Section 8 that they opt to grab the easy dollars. I’m trying to be optimistic and not jaded.

    I also think encouraging 30 units worth of outside self-supporting people to enter the neighborhood would also promote the idea of showing the existing residents, by example, that getting trained and getting a job is worth the effort. If so, that importation of outsiders might fit into the bigger plan to rehabilitate the existing residents, rather than to just gentrify the whole area and push those people out.

Viewing 15 posts - 331 through 345 (of 373 total)

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