What's going on, Albuquerque?
Tags: MorningFix, abortion, closings, fraud, peeping, rugby
The Albq. Journal had a big article on the mental health debacle. No surprise it was all to cast aspersions on the mental health providers shut down--trying to make their management contracts look nefarious.
I believe the poll about the 20-week abortion ban. Because people aren't given the facts about how many abortions occur at 20 weeks (very few) and why. No one explains that Operation Rescue's grisly aim is to force women to carry a child with life-ending birth defects or even a dead fetus to full term just so the mother and father can experience the joy of stillbirth or watching their just born child suffer real pain for its only few hours or days on earth. They are sick and it should not be forgotten that their current "senior policy advisor" was convicted for bombing and abortion clinic.
Back in November 2012 the 4th street do over was presented as something looking like this: http://www.abqjournal.com/147832/news/fourth-street-mall-makeover.html. As I recall there was to be winding traffic lanes to slow down the traffic. Councilor Meyers describes this rendering as having wide sidewalks but I don't see it. And of course Councilor Benton sees cyclists. Nothing say ambience like a sidewalk cup of latte three feet from auto exhausts.
re: Positively 4th St. - anything's better than the current "bum gauntlet".
The thing about 4th St is that it's as much an architectural problem as a streetscape problem. With a few exceptions at either end of the pedestrian strip, most of the buildings along the mall have turned their backs to it or just encroached on it for closed patios, some of which don't even open to the mall. The big skyscrapers like the AT&T building (blank wall) and the Hyatt (blank walls and utility access) are the worst offenders. Not exactly a conducive atmosphere for a vibrant pedestrian scene, but a great one if people want to hang out somewhere relatively safe and quiet without being observed.
And I actually disagree about the status quo. As mentioned, it's a nice, shady place for homeless people to hang out and there is little to draw other people there, but it's not what I would call horrible...some of the descriptions on TV news especially are way overblown. Seems like there are plenty of ways the current situation could be enhanced - new planters would help, and this seems like a great spot for a downtown food truck pod. I think OBTS is right...turning it into a narrow, slow, and presumably perennially backed-up street isn't going to do anything to enhance 4th as a pedestrian corridor or place to hang out. It may drive away the homeless, but that's about all it's going to do. Imagine what the proposed street would be like on a Saturday or Sunday night when the cruisers are out in force.
Nick Manole is a cool guy, and his family are great people too. Back when I worked downtown it was nice having Nick's as a lunch option. Sad to see it go, but he's right - it's a perfect location for something new to move in. Looking forward to seeing what crops up there!
Huh, what? Did I say something about the 4th street mall? Or are you in my head, Phil? Aiiiiyeeeee!
Heh...just kidding. I definitely do not support opening it to traffic. That solves nothing--except moving "icky homeless" people somewhere else as Phil said. Sat. and Sun. the cops would shut 4th down, likely. Indeed, the 4th street mall suffers from poor design. A food truck pod might be a great idea....and now that Nick Manole is closing Nick's, he wouldn't be there to oppose it. (Yes, he opposed food trucks being on the street by his business. He might be a nice guy, but he's no capitalist.)
Oops, I meant Hunter...sorry, hunter.
A two block road doesn't make much sense. Maybe they should gate off the two areas and only allow people to enter through businesses/government buildings that have access to the space and let them sublet the space to cafes, etc... I mean, you basically want to keep the transients out, and let the paying customers in.
Turning over public space to the sole use of "paying customers" is a terrible idea. Frankly, I'd prefer transients to the people who seem to be the regular clientele of the meat market bars and b-grade restaurants along the stretch between Central and Copper. And I bristle at the idea that I can't walk down 4th street there without being a "customer."
Phil has hit it on the head with the issue of architecture. The interaction between the buildings along 4th street and the public space is a negative one. It's not a problem that will be solved adequately without addressing the structures themselves.
Make that two full-throated "no" votes for the gate-it-off plan, Shotsie...what a terrible idea.
While the architectural problems will always pose an issue it seems like the city could be doing a lot more to draw people onto 4th street during the day, even without changing its existing configuration. I already mentioned establishing a permanent Portland-style food pod, which would pull in the lunch crowd, but offering meaningful incentives for restaurants and other businesses with large daytime clienteles would also help...bars represent at least half the current businesses on the strip, and most of them are closed during the day. With the blank walls already mentioned, this means nearly every business along the mall is shuttered on a given workday. The lack of any significant pedestrian activity makes the homeless population more visible, fueling the notion that they're a "problem", which in turn keeps other people off 4th street and makes it a more conducive place to hang out if you're homeless. Getting a lot more warm bodies and pairs of eyes in there during the day might do wonders to change perceptions and would give more people a stake, which would in turn help build critical mass for better permanent solutions than the proposed road.
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