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-   -   CHICAGO | Politics, Current Events and Everything Else (http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/showthread.php?t=213683)

aaron38 Aug 28, 2017 4:17 PM

Gentrification would be much less of a problem if property taxes for existing homes didn't double every time a tear-down rebuild occurs or an empty lot gets a new building.
Just because my neighbor cashes out and someone with more money moves in doesn't mean I get a raise and can suddenly afford to pay hundreds more a month in taxes.

It's government that is pricing people out of gentrifying neighborhoods, not developers. And it's wrong to say that a neighborhood has to remain depressed and crumbling as the only way to keep it affordable, because that's the only way government will keep the taxes low.

Maybe that's why we see South side politicians putting zoning freezes on major arterials? If the city is going to say "there's a micro brewery and trendy Thai fusion restaurant around the corner from you, you must be rich and can pay double", then the only solution is to keep new businesses out of the area.

bcp Aug 28, 2017 5:14 PM

well said...once again, gov't creates a problem and their only answer is "more gov't and taxes!"

moorhosj Aug 28, 2017 7:11 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bcp (Post 7905476)
well said...once again, gov't creates a problem and their only answer is "more gov't and taxes!"

I hope you would say the same thing about the GI Bill, a governmental transfer of wealth that helped build the great American middle class. The over-the-top libertarian bent of this board is a little too much sometimes. (Unless we are talking about a parking podium or ugly design, then this board is all about government intervention, but that is a topic for another day.)

The lack of affordable housing is a problem across the United States, not specific to Chicago. Maybe it is possible that the "market" has failed; we should at least entertain the possibility. Wages are not rising, and have not risen in 20 years, for middle-income earners. Little inventory was built from 2010 to 2015, so rents have increased due to low supply. Stagnant income plus increased housing costs gives us the problem we see today.

Stunnies23 Aug 28, 2017 7:20 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by moorhosj (Post 7905640)
I hope you would say the same thing about the GI Bill, a governmental transfer of wealth that helped build the great American middle class. The over-the-top libertarian bent of this board is a little too much sometimes. (Unless we are talking about a parking podium or ugly design, then this board is all about government intervention, but that is a topic for another day.)

The lack of affordable housing is a problem across the United States, not specific to Chicago. Maybe it is possible that the "market" has failed; we should at least entertain the possibility. Wages are not rising, and have not risen in 20 years, for middle-income earners. Little inventory was built from 2010 to 2015, so rents have increased due to low supply. Stagnant income plus increased housing costs gives us the problem we see today.

There are plenty of affordable housing options in Chicago. It's just that they are not 'trendy neighborhoods'. Instead they are blue collar hoods such as Clearing, Garfield Ridge, Hegewisch, etc.

llamaorama Aug 28, 2017 7:39 PM

So in the absence of property taxes, where do you suppose money for even basic city services come from?

I find it ironic there's complaints about "government waste" coming from people who want billions in new transit. In a city that's shrinking and has stagnant transit ridership in a state that is falling into a fiscal emergency.

moorhosj Aug 28, 2017 7:58 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Stunnies23 (Post 7905651)
There are plenty of affordable housing options in Chicago. It's just that they are not 'trendy neighborhoods'. Instead they are blue collar hoods such as Clearing, Garfield Ridge, Hegewisch, etc.

Based on a quick google search there are not many places are available for rent in these areas. They are mostly single family homes in the $150k-$250k range. This is "affordable" for many, but a $100k home can still require a $20k down payment.

The problem is not for home owners, they capture property value increases through home equity. While they may have to move if the property taxes get too high, they will re-coup that and more when they sell the house. The problem is with renters who see their monthly rents rise with higher property values.

emathias Aug 28, 2017 10:20 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by moorhosj (Post 7905640)
I hope you would say the same thing about the GI Bill, a governmental transfer of wealth that helped build the great white American middle class. The over-the-top libertarian bent of this board is a little too much sometimes. (Unless we are talking about a parking podium or ugly design, then this board is all about government intervention, but that is a topic for another day.)
...

It's not commonly known by the general population, but despite the fact that the GI Bill was originally created to help WWII vets, it wasn't until long after World War II that black soldiers were able to benefit from it anywhere near as much as white soldiers. This was due to two primary reasons. First, when it came to housing, even the GI Bill housing benefits fell under jurisdiction of lending requirements that included "red-lining," the racist practice of legally preventing blacks from buying in certain areas, and banks refusing to loan money for homes that weren't in those areas. Second, the educational aspect of the GI Bill was allowed to be administered at the state and local level, which meant that Jim Crow and other vestiges of institutional racism prevented large numbers of returning black soldiers from taking advantage of higher education in the same way that returning white soldiers were.

It's really one of the great shames of Federal programs, and that history is starting to be better known recently - in the past couple of years there have been some bigger main-stream stories highlighting it - but for a long time few people outside of the black community or people who were really intimately familiar with the way the programs actually played out, knew that the GI Bill was of so little use to returning African-American soldiers. It was (maybe) better than nothing for the returning black soldiers, but white soldiers benefited much, much more from it to such a degree that it actually ended up perpetuating racial disparities more than helping to heal them. I found that especially disheartening when I learned about it since prior to learning about it, I'd often seen the role of black soldiers in WWII as playing a big role in getting the Civil Rights Era started, and of their service helping to level the playing field. Unfortunately, while it did contribute to the Civil Rights Era, it didn't help level the economic playing field and may have actually made it worse.

marothisu Nov 1, 2017 4:08 AM

In semi interesting small news, one of the heirs of the Red Bull fortune, from Thailand, bought a $7.5M renovated mansion in the Gold Coast near Viagra Triangle. I wonder what his plans are and why he bought the property - multi billionaire.

Rocket49 Nov 1, 2017 4:30 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by marothisu (Post 7972082)
In semi interesting small news, one of the heirs of the Red Bull fortune, from Thailand, bought a $7.5M renovated mansion in the Gold Coast near Viagra Triangle. I wonder what his plans are and why he bought the property - multi billionaire.

Perhaps he likes good value. I would imagine a similar property in NYC or London would sell for 2 or 3 times more.

10023 Nov 1, 2017 10:20 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by marothisu (Post 7972082)
In semi interesting small news, one of the heirs of the Red Bull fortune, from Thailand, bought a $7.5M renovated mansion in the Gold Coast near Viagra Triangle. I wonder what his plans are and why he bought the property - multi billionaire.

Thailand? The founder of Red Bull is Austrian. The local soccer team in Salzburg is even called the Red Bulls. Perhaps you mean the original drink that Red Bull was based on.

marothisu Nov 1, 2017 10:53 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by 10023 (Post 7972169)
Thailand? The founder of Red Bull is Austrian. The local soccer team in Salzburg is even called the Red Bulls. Perhaps you mean the original drink that Red Bull was based on.

Your post is inaccurate. The drink was invented by Chaleo Yoovidhya in 1976. Dietrich Mateschitz, the Austrian, partnered with Chaleo in the 1980s to found Red Bull as we know it today (he's also a multi billionaire). They both had equal stake in the company upon founding. Founder of Red Bull could apply to either guy since they had equal share upon founding, but CHaleo Yoovidya is more accurate since he was the actual guy to create the drink in the first place AND had equal founding stake.

And yes, I'm talking about the ACTUAL inventor of the drink, Chaleo Yoovidhya, not the guy who said "Hey I like your drink, let's market it around the world. I'll put up some money if you match my amount."

Quote:

Originally Posted by Rocket49 (Post 7972091)
Perhaps he likes good value. I would imagine a similar property in NYC or London would sell for 2 or 3 times more.

Right. Hey, maybe Chicago can add a new Billionaire to the list :)

Kenmore Nov 1, 2017 11:08 AM

the ridiculously good thai food in the city is one of chicago's great secrets

the urban politician Nov 1, 2017 1:31 PM

We need more foreign billionaires to buy residential real estate in Chicago. The fact that this hasn’t happened yet boggles the mind. We really need to not be this invisible.

marothisu Nov 1, 2017 1:34 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by the urban politician (Post 7972252)
We need more foreign billionaires to buy residential real estate in Chicago. The fact that this hasn’t happened yet boggles the mind. We really need to not be this invisible.

It boggles my mind too, but Chicago is the unknown jewel of the US in a way as far as urban cities go. Once people visit then many times they say "oh shit...nice" from this perspective. Still kills me though. However, you have to be careful getting what you wish for as this can drive prices way up if there's too much of it which could not be good for residents. In any case though, getting a few more wouldn't hurt :)

emathias Nov 1, 2017 2:05 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by marothisu (Post 7972255)
It boggles my mind too, but Chicago is the unknown jewel of the US in a way as far as urban cities go. Once people visit then many times they say "oh shit...nice" from this perspective. Still kills me though. However, you have to be careful getting what you wish for as this can drive prices way up if there's too much of it which could not be good for residents. In any case though, getting a few more wouldn't hurt :)

Since I already own, I'm ready for prices to spike. According to Zillow, the average list price for homes in New York City overall is about $850 per square foot, and about $1,800 per square foot in Manhattan. Since I paid about $300 per square foot for my place in River North I'd be overjoyed to see my valuation pop like that (although if my property taxes were six times as high, I might have trouble affording to stay here since I'd be paying something like $3,000 per month just in property taxes if they increased proportionally. But being able to sell and be a millionaire would take some of the sting away.

HomrQT Nov 1, 2017 3:02 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by marothisu (Post 7972255)
It boggles my mind too, but Chicago is the unknown jewel of the US in a way as far as urban cities go. Once people visit then many times they say "oh shit...nice" from this perspective. Still kills me though. However, you have to be careful getting what you wish for as this can drive prices way up if there's too much of it which could not be good for residents. In any case though, getting a few more wouldn't hurt :)

The general consensus I've gotten from dozens of people I've talked to all over Europe is that they know Chicago exists, they've heard the name before and that it's somewhere in the US, but there's usually a hard stop there. Showing people pictures of our skyline for the first time has dropped quite a few jaws. For those I've talked to that have visited Chicago, they always appear to be very much in love with our city.

emathias Nov 1, 2017 3:07 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by HomrQT (Post 7972373)
The general consensus I've gotten from dozens of people I've talked to all over Europe is that they know Chicago exists, they've heard the name before and that it's somewhere in the US, but there's usually a hard stop there. Showing people pictures of our skyline for the first time has dropped quite a few jaws. For those I've talked to that have visited Chicago, they always appear to be very much in love with our city.

I've probably hosted over 150 Europeans through Airbnb. All of them positively gushed about Chicago as they got to know it during their stay. All of them loved it and wished they'd budgeted more time to see it - many stay in Chicago for 2-3 days and then head to New York for a full week.

marothisu Nov 1, 2017 3:11 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by HomrQT (Post 7972373)
The general consensus I've gotten from dozens of people I've talked to all over Europe is that they know Chicago exists, they've heard the name before and that it's somewhere in the US, but there's usually a hard stop there. Showing people pictures of our skyline for the first time has dropped quite a few jaws. For those I've talked to that have visited Chicago, they always appear to be very much in love with our city.

A week ago I was showing pictures of the new Apple store to my co-worker in NYC (who is originally from India). He had only been to Chicago once, years ago, but out in the suburbs for work and the only thing he did in the city was go to the Field Museum. He didn't walk around or anything. Literally went to the Field Museum and then back to his hotel near O'Hare.

His first question was "Is that river photoshopped in there?" When I said no, he's like "wow that looks really nice." So I showed him a bunch of pictures of Chicago. Downtown, the lakefront, the river, etc. He kept saying how beautiful it looks and even commented that the lakefront looks like parts of Miami and he was shocked. This coming from a guy who's been in the US for 15 or 20 years. I bring up Chicago from time to time at work - he's kind of made fun of me for it. However, when he saw these pictures of the city itself he started being serious about it and talked about how much nicer it looks than NYC. I think he wants to visit Chicago now after seeing the pictures.

As far as other people go, it's been the same - international visitors. Most I've met have said the same thing "I had no idea!" and a lot told their friends that they should visit Chicago. Almost all of them were shocked at the city and how different it was from what they expected.

HomrQT Nov 1, 2017 3:20 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by emathias (Post 7972383)
I've probably hosted over 150 Europeans through Airbnb. All of them positively gushed about Chicago as they got to know it during their stay. All of them loved it and wished they'd budgeted more time to see it - many stay in Chicago for 2-3 days and then head to New York for a full week.

Quote:

Originally Posted by marothisu (Post 7972393)
A week ago I was showing pictures of the new Apple store to my co-worker in NYC (who is originally from India). He had only been to Chicago once, years ago, but out in the suburbs for work and the only thing he did in the city was go to the Field Museum. He didn't walk around or anything. Literally went to the Field Museum and then back to his hotel near O'Hare.

His first question was "Is that river photoshopped in there?" When I said no, he's like "wow that looks really nice." So I showed him a bunch of pictures of Chicago. Downtown, the lakefront, the river, etc. He kept saying how beautiful it looks and even commented that the lakefront looks like parts of Miami and he was shocked. This coming from a guy who's been in the US for 15 or 20 years. I bring up Chicago from time to time at work - he's kind of made fun of me for it. However, when he saw these pictures of the city itself he started being serious about it and talked about how much nicer it looks than NYC. I think he wants to visit Chicago now after seeing the pictures.

As far as other people go, it's been the same - international visitors. Most I've met have said the same thing "I had no idea!" and a lot told their friends that they should visit Chicago. Almost all of them were shocked at the city and how different it was from what they expected.

Quote:

Originally Posted by TimeAgain (Post 7972415)
The general consensus I've gotten when I go to the East Coast is that people don't know much/don't care about Chicago. It's there. They know it's big, but they always underestimate it's size. And they know we have a lot of crime. It's frustrating, and anything positive I tell them always seems seems to surprise them.

Internationally, they know Chicago for Al Capone and Michael Jordan.

Quote:

Originally Posted by gebs (Post 7972418)
I'm a long distance runner and have hosted many international guests for the Chicago Marathon and their reaction to the city is unanimously positive. And that is an event that literally showcases the entire urban core, as it starts in Grant Park, runs through the Loop, Lincoln Park, Lakeview, Old Town, Greektown, Chinatown, Pilsen, Motor Row, and the South Loop.

Echoing the sentiments in this thread, the positive feedback is almost always accompanied by surprise. I do think that most everyone who visits, especially from abroad, leaves with a much better impression (if they even had one to begin with).


I think these consistent similar experiences are very telling and Chicago somehow needs to do more to get its name out into the world beyond "it gets really cold and a lot of people get shot". Our GDP is outrageous, our architectural history, our food culture, our population size, multiple large airports, world class museums, proximity to the lake with dozens of beaches, good public transportation (for an American city), and the list goes on. We should seriously be a global destination city, not a "wow I didn't even know" city. Something more needs to be done than just "Visit Chicago" ads in foreign airline terminals.

TimeAgain Nov 1, 2017 3:21 PM

The general consensus I've gotten when I go to the East Coast is that people don't know much/don't care about Chicago. It's there. They know it's big, but they always underestimate it's size. And they know we have a lot of crime. It's frustrating, and anything positive I tell them always seems seems to surprise them.

Internationally, they know Chicago for Al Capone and Michael Jordan.


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