Tuesday, April 22, 2008

If Maggie were Mayor

Looking around Carbondale today, I wonder how much of what we see (or don't see) is because this blog supported Brad Cole for Mayor back in 2003. Hard to tell, but the landscape would certainly be different. Maggie had a Renaissance Vision; Cole had a Reconstruction Vision. Since he's been mayor, nearly 3 dozen buildings have disappeared from view.

Would Jim Jarvis and Cycletech still be located in the now-demolished dairy building, along with Gasoline Alley if Maggie were elected instead of Cole? Would Selmier-Peerless still be crumbling on the corner of Washington & Walnut?

Would K-Mart building be empty? Would TIF District approval have occurred; would First Southern Bank be there?

My reasons for supporting Cole back then were due primarily to Ms. F's 4x failure to reply to email messages concerning the swimming pool issue. By then, Cole had sufficiently impressed with his follow-through and willingness to go along with some of my ideas.

Would things be stagnant if Flanagan had been elected? (If she had, Sheila Simon would not have run for Mayor in the last election.) Tom Redmond would still be working at his job.

I saw Maggie recently at a musical event at Hangar 9. She looked great, and told me of her family's effort to grow organic grapes on land east of town.

Cole, I get to visit with in his office, every two or three months. Will see him at Bike 2 Work Day on May 16 . . . . Would there be a Bike 2 Work Day if Maggie were Mayor? Sure. Why not?

This post could shape up as a chapter in my blook, so the next time I see Cole and Flanagan, I'll ask them what they think.


Anonymous said...

Woohoo! There's nothing that says progress like demolition of buildings. Come on!!! Half of the demolished locations are now bare lots with no sign of business in the future. Since Cole has become mayor, crime in town has increased, businesses have shut down, there is no sign of incoming industry, the schools are not testing well, and there is still questionable activities going on down at city hall. He may have a reconstructionist vision, but he needs to put on some glasses and see what's really going on here in Carbondale.

DaveX said...

I know they're two totally different places, but I have to wonder at Marion's ability to pull in all manner of businesses, when Carbondale seems to have difficulty even retaining what it has. I think Cole's "clearing the way" is necessary and a good thing, but perhaps a little more chutzpah in the follow-up is needed, too.

At least the Sunset is gone, haha.

Anonymous said...

Goodness, a Marion vs. Carbondale comment, never been down that road before. :) All good things in Marion can be traced to one factory that employs 1000 people and the freeway related, minimum wage stuff.

Carbondale is a very difficult place to do anything, beyond a service business. Lots of reasons for this, but we don't have time here.

Tom Redmond would likely be gone, his 30 years were up.

Maggie as mayor for 8 years? Scary. Way to do Halloween in April! I like this one.

Anonymous said...

Surely Aisin doesn't match SIUC in terms of employment opportunity, does it? Carbondale also has SIH, last I checked... wasn't Marion Hospital sitting vacant before Heartland was built? I'm certainly no city planner, but I can't imagine there isn't some deeper reason for Carbondale to behave like such a sleeping giant.

Anonymous said...

The "Startl...M..." is correct, Aisin isn't SIU, but Marion already had a base. When you add 1000 real jobs to that base, everything is lifted. The service jobs added to the economy, should be 4000 to 5000, because of the original 1000. Makes a big wave.

I have done the problems of business development in Carbondale to death in my own blog. Go check over there for lots on this subject.

Hey Dave, my blog is almost this active. You out of town or something? :)