Can Our City Be Maintained?: 2022-10-24
It's been said my many already this election cycle, but I will repeat, this city is simply not maintainable as is. It is still going in the wrong direction, more sprawl, becoming even less maintainable with less density. In 50 years from now will over half our roads be in shambles? Will poverty and crime be the norm for those who stay here? Will our children want to keep propping this city up? Or will we make long term choices now to see a city build itself up to greatness?
We keep making the same mistakes decade after decade. Putting most of our money into police to deal with crime instead of towards prevention. Keep building more than can by any stretch of our abilities be at all maintainable in 50 years. We need to stop sprawl now, increase density, free up funds and create better revenue sources by having a strong working force, which will in turn be a strong tax base. We need a strong middle class, the wealth divide is only getting worse as a few become rich and more and more end up in poverty.
If I look at my mortgage and plan ahead, I would say in about 20 years it is all paid off and things will be looking good. I can see year to year benefits and be optimistic. But if I look ahead and see my mortgage is getting bigger not smaller, that I will have more bills, and be making less money, and have more to support overall, well I would hope I would stop and say to myself "This needs to change. Now."
That is our infrastructure right now, we keep building out more than we can keep in good repair, and keep throwing more money at it, losing funding to other important social services that could help prevent crime and raise the quality of living for all in our city. This is where we are stuck, spending more and more fixing roads, money that is going to cement instead of people. A strong long term vision for our city can turn this around. It feels very much like our city is at a turning point, that the next decade will decide a lot as we lay out future plans. We need to listen, to learn from the failures and successes of others, we need to think of what we want in 50 years, and reach for it. What do you want to see our city looking like 50 years from now?