You know, it's too bad when historical stuff disappears, but if they've been selling burritos there for 35 years - didn't it disappear a long time ago? A sign is just a sign.
"There are buildings that are worth preserving. Ninety percent of what's in the Village isn't," said Engelhardt. "The Village was freedom. The Village was not rules and regulations set in concrete. It destroys everything the Village was always famous for."
I could care less about the sign being painted, what interests me is, like I've said before, the changing cityscape (any city) on the small scale. we have in our downtown, and I'm sure many other cities do also, buildings that have been many shops, etc., but out front in the area between the door and the sidewalk, the original store had its name embedded in the stoop. TIP TOP TAILORS, etc. even thought the store has been gone for 50+ years.
if anything, our city has a very backward thinking Historical Society that limits height of buildings in certain areas of downtown (we have a national historic site called Citadel Hill,
and you can't block the sightlines from that to the harbour). consequently, our downtown core is dying, and businesses are fleeing to commercial parks where they fake heritage with new buildings that look old:
meanwhile, buildings in the downtown are left to rot:
luckily, some forward thinking buildings with heritage roots are coming to life, keeping the facade and adding to it:
but our Historical Society frustrates me. I wish we could adapt the European model, where old and new coexist (for the most part).
In my home city, Newcastle (England), there's a curious mix of beautiful Georgian architecture and absolutely awful 60s stuff that is now in the process of gradually being demolished. You can't halt change I suppose but you have to wonder about who the fuck thought it was a good idea to put some of those buildings up (especially when you see what they often replaced - i.e. the aforementioned Georgian buildings). I guess we're just lucky that a lot of the old stuff is still there. Grey Street is one of the most beautiful thoroughfares in the country (even if I am biased). Anyway, I happened upon this in a blog which is connected to the op: http://www.amazon.com/Berenice-Abbo...3770/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1306031629&sr=8-1
For seven years I lived in downtown St. Paul in a corner apartment of a building that was originally a hotel.
That was in the late 70s/early 80s and St. Paul was full of old buildings like these. The city was a ghost town after office hours, and it was saddled with mayors and business owners who wanted to "renovate" the city. They renovated it all right. One morning I woke up and there were construction workers six inches outside my bedroom window, constructing an arch that would be the gateway to nothing. They closed 7th street and paved it with bricks for happy pedestrians to walk around on. But there weren't any pedestrians, because the only thriving business on 7th street was the Hello Dolly, a ragged old bar full of whores and drunks.
I left 27 years ago and have only been back once, about 10 years ago. I'm not overly nostalgic, but downtown just broke my heart. The St. Francis is still there, but it's surrounded by glass skyscrapers (well, as skyscrapey as St. Paul can get, anyway). They tried to conserve some things, like an old dining car dive cafe, but they built a giant glass building around it. I'm pretty sure the bums and prostitutes that used to eat there when I lived in the neighborhood are no longer welcome. I wonder where all the fringe types that populated downtown went? I mean, besides California.
Where did everyone who lived in the old cities go? They're dead, yeah, I know, but it seems like today there is no place for people to go to survive on little or nothing. No place to go blend in to the sidewalk. No place for an goofy 17 year old to get a cheap apartment and really live in the thick of things. There are still some small pockets in really big cities like Los Angeles, but they are quickly being gentrified and the people pushed out to who-knows-where.
When the rich move back to the city centers, as seems to be happening all over the country, where does everyone else go? The suburbs are still too full of suburbanites to take those over and run them into the ground. It seems like the people are just disappearing. A certain kind of people anyway.
we have an area on the waterfront called Historic Properties that was supposed to be plowed under in the early '70s to make way for an elevated highway. it was thankfully stopped. by the Historical Society that frustrates me. heh.
that highway would have separated the city from the water, and would've changed the make-up of the downtown area for the worse. we love our water here.