Thursday, September 28, 2006

Coldwell Banker -- Fort Wayne in top 25 of most affordable home markets
Just read this on and found the entire list on the Coldwell Banker site. Evansville the only city in Indiana that is "more affordable" than FTW. It's really too bad that we were recently referred to as a "gritty rust belt city." I consider this lazy reporting and writing; there's a lot of things FTW is and isn't..."gritty" is just not how I'd describe it. Sometimes "rundown," and others, "deserted," but not "gritty."
The announcement about the zoo African Veldt redesign is so exciting, although I feel a little old that I remember when the current Veldt was new.
But thinking about FTW revitalization in general, and trying to think in new ways, it's another piece of the puzzle. After our great aquarium experience in Newport, KY (of all places), I continue to think that our civic leaders who are so determined to waste my tax dollars on a new downtown stadium (again, a good idea, but more than a decade too late) that is used only five months a year by a limited number of people (sorry, folks, a low-A ballclub is never going to fill the stadium except on special promo nights), than an aquarium makes much more sense. Couple that with the indoor water park idea bandied about, and now you're talking.
So now downtown you'd have an aquarium, waterpark, and old favs like the Lincoln Museum, Conservatory, Art Musuem, Civic, etc. Great new draw in the library. Everybody still wanting to go to Glenbook and Jefferson Pointe to shop. The zoo about to be better than ever. Spiece basketball tournaments drawing kids and families ALL YEAR ROUND. Baseball tournaments as hosted by Between the Lines and others drawing the same demographic in the summer. Not to mention the soccer games, golf outings, bowling, and other events we don't hear much about but draw thousands to FTW. And our colleges--we don't have the rep as a college town, but you know what, we are--USF football, IPFW basketball and volleyball, Indiana Tech baseball, and all the sports in between--brings tons of fans and participants to the city that we just don't hear much about.
All of a sudden, there lots of stuff to do. What we need to do is MARKET IT; draw it all together...and HAVE A REALLY COOL WAY for people to get from place to place.
The new downtown signs are a start--but we need those pointing the way to all these spread-out attractions. Ever been to Disney World? No getting lost there.
And ever notice how popular the red trolleys are? Wedding parties love them...special events love them...and if we had bright red trolleys making stops at all the fun places FTW has to offer...if they were cheap or even free....
Okay: so we're putting the stuff to do together. We agree we need to make sure those visitors, and other prospective visitors, know what those things are. Getting those visitors to our city to the places we want them to be might be as easy as some really cool and colorful signage, and an investment in some bright-red trolleys.
Hey! Fort Wayne: The Trolley City!

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