Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Big Ideas

You really have to love Mayor Mike's whinefest. What a loser (though, it must be said, a very rich loser and if I ever feels the need to donate large sums of money to a certain blogger I'll happily allow myself to be bought).

Less than 24 hours after watching his stadium dreams crushed in Albany, the mayor delivered a downcast assessment of the city's future even as he vowed to continue pushing an aggressive development agenda. His normally sanguine outlook tempered by the previous day's events, Mr. Bloomberg said the defeat of the Manhattan stadium threatened to define New York as a place where big ideas are doomed to fail.

"I think it was a major blow to this city," he said. "I think most people understand this; that we have lost something. We've lost a little bit of our spirit to go ahead and our can-do attitude. If you adopt this kind of policy, we never would have built Carnegie Hall, we never would have built Radio City Music Hall, we never would have built the airports, or the Triborough Bridge or Central Park."

He added, "One of the great dangers is that developers are going to get disheartened and say, 'I can't build anything in New York City because the politics always get in the way.' "

Yeah, whatever. I'm no New Yorker, though I'd love to be if I had enough money to not be a Poor New Yorker, but there are plenty of Big Ideas that probably would manage to sail through the politics.

2nd Avenue Subway for starters.

Take the stadium land and develop a genuine urban village there, and not some faux-suburban monstrosity that seems too much the rage in cities these days.

42nd street light rail is worth considering.

Oh, and then there's that whole downtown development someone should be thinking about.

And, generally, hunting around the city to find all the land parcels which would be suitable for medium-rise housing with street level retail.