Vermont Uber Taxis

As a treat for LunaLucia we hopped on board the Vermonter on Saturday and took a trip to Essex Junction, Vermont. Her favorite vocal group (“They’re not a band!”) Pentatonix was performing at The Champlain Valley Fair and we thought it might make for a memorable end of summer experience. It did. The remnants of

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Transformation

It was 40 years ago that I began to see the full color pages of The Morning Union newspaper proclaiming the renaissance of downtown Springfield. The closing of the Forbes and Wallace department store had frightened people. It made them take a serious look at just how bad things had become. It must have been

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Small Rocks!

There were two primary reasons I chose to back the MGM development in downtown Springfield: first was what I suppose could be called a “YIMBY” instinct which I have always had for downtown for everything from prisons to porn; second would be its design. From a contemporary standpoint it would be easy to make the

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A Beautiful Priority

For years I’ve taken students on trips abroad and there has been one recurring problem, long before the advent of the smartphone, which frustrated me: they would be so worried about recording their trip that often they weren’t truly experiencing where they were. With the smartphone we see it even at everyday events and in

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LuLu-lations

(My step daughter LuLu has long wanted a presence on my blog. She has requested some space here to write about her view of growing up in Springfield. Here are her ideas, only lightly edited by me, the evil overlord of Rational Urbanism) Urban Blues ​So I live in the city of Springfield, MA. Yes,

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The Stormcrow

“You have ever been a herald of woe. Troubles follow you like crows, and ever the oftener the worse. I will not deceive you: when I heard that Shadowfax had come back riderless, I rejoiced at the return of the horse, but still more at the lack of the rider; and when Eomer brought the

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Not Going Out Of Their Way (This Time)

You might recall the great pains The Republican took to point out that “Springfield’s” #13 ranking in quality of life by US News & World Report was really about THE REGION AS A WHOLE. Here’s an example of more metro level data expressed with just a little less emphasis on its regional character: From the

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Tug of War

(Apologies to Johnny at Granola Shotgun) The struggle for renewal along the region’s oldest stroad is visible. These photos go in order as you cross the Memorial Bridge heading toward The Big E fairgrounds: Crappy disintegrating asphalt sidewalk until…¡Chipotle! What’s a “build to line” again? Someone call Shel Silverstein: They razed a nice old church

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Rochester Americans

(That’s two AHL inspired headlines this month) I had the most interesting experience while hanging out at my favorite local farm last weekend. I was in conversation with a father who described how beneficial the experience of being on a farm had been for his “city kids”. As the family seemed clearly to be middle

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The Present, the Future, and That Other Future

I don’t know what’s going to happen in the future. I know what I think is going to happen, and I know the vision I have, as murky and fuzzy as it is, for how we are going to get there but, having been wrong about many things many times before, I have no doubt

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