Here’s a switch

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Here’s a switch

The borough of Queens in NYC has a problem. They want to develop a new mega center downtown on an existing 1000 space parking lot. And the picketers are marching to support keeping the parking lot. Read all about it here. Sheesh — "Save the Parking Lot" That’s a new one. Its usually "Down with the Parking Lot" or "Damn the Parking Swine" or some such.

The developer is going to replace the 1100 spaces lost with 2000 spaces, but locals fear the development with a park, housing, offices and shopping center will use up more than that, meaning that there will be tons of cars jamming the streets and gridlock will prevail and local businesses will suffer.

Lets see — There will be more people coming downtown, at least a 1000 more middle class folks living within walking distance, a theater that will bring teenagers with money to spend, lots of business travelers in the new hotel, and tons of new jobs– but damn, why bring that mess downtown. Lets put it in a field in Jersey where it belongs. (No that’s another picket sign)

Sorry, folks — you live in a city. You are in urban land. If you don’t like it, move to the country. Now, if they charge the right amount for parking, and charge the right amount for parking on street, the money generated will mean more and better lighting, sidewalks, street scapes, parks and the like. Of course you have to ensure the money goes into that project and not the general fund.

Oh yes, the truth comes out, read down to the bottom of the article. — the merchants are concerned that during construction, they will be put out of business. The developer should help take care of these issues. Its been done before. Short term pain, long term gain.

Lets all go to the new Flushing Center in 2009 and see what a disaster was wrought. I’ll buy the beer.

JVH

John Van Horn

John Van Horn

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