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  #2721  
Old Posted Oct 12, 2010, 11:14 PM
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I disagree. I wouldn't say that anyone wouldn't consider moving to the city now as compared to 5 years ago.
I disagree with this, and early 2000s was the best time for the city it seemed. I know *countless* people who have moved out in the last year+, and all gave me the same answers as to why. Granted, I am not living in the area anymore so the buzz may still be there and I am missing it, but my roots still go very deep there and no one I know (even the most hardcore of urbanites) is making any plans to stay or move into the city. And again, that is excluding the people I know who were living there and left.

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The city has always been a breath away from financial straights.
I don't think that is a fair statement at all. Before the last few years, things were actually going fairly smoothly and there seemed to be a nice buffer between what is going on now.

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Harrisburg's mantra should be to build them and build them tall. get as many people living in the city as possible. I feel the capital region has gotten out pretty light in this recession. If an entrepreneur wants to take advantage of the upswing in the economy he needs to start building now.
That's actually a really bad mantra [depending on what exactly you mean by "tall"], as you should only build tall when it makes financial sense to do so. In Harrisburg (and many cities, actually) it really doesn't make a whole lot of sense to go too tall. Also, saturation is something Harrisburg should really try to shy away from. One needs to look no further than Miami, Vegas, etc., to see what happens when you build too many condo buildings. I do agree that HBG needs to do all that it can to lure people back into the city but let's be realistic here: all of the pros to living in a downtown, HBG has very few of them unless you are a DT worker or right on 2nd St. and in the mix of things (and in many ways, that could actually be a con). HBG needs to focus on some more day to day amenities and being more of an after dark place if it wants to lure more full-time residents.

PA Pride: LOL what an ugly piece of junk that thing is! Typical Harrisburg: a great idea with some promise on paper that still somehow completely and totally fails in action thanks to the boneheads behind it all...not to mention they sucked up some prime real estate there for pure garbage.

Anyway, the last I heard the wonderful[/sarcasm] Mayor Thompson was trying to go after the developer as well, and here was the latest on that I could dig up:

http://www.pennlive.com/midstate/ind...hompso_19.html
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  #2722  
Old Posted Oct 13, 2010, 5:05 PM
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Well, I don't mean that Harrisburg should over develop. That would most definitely be a bad thing, but the only way for any municipality to maintain a healthy budget is to have an expanding tax base. Or at the bare minimum a tax base that can support the services that the city needs to offer. The city is landlocked and can't annex until legislation in the PA goverment reenables cities to do so. Therefore the only way to gain revenue is to build more expensive properties.

I would submit that Harrisburg doesn't have a tax base to support their current obligations. That is quite clear actually. There is many reasons that this and I am sure we are all aware of them.

I actually live on 2nd on the 600 block. I own a house there and love it. I know plenty of others around me that feel the same. The issue that I believe Reed had was he thought he had to make some urbanite mecca and spent many millions to make this happen. There are two things that stop wanna be city dwellers more than anything else and that is the schools suck and property taxes are high. I am not an educator so I won't pretend to know how to fix the schools, but my ideas of increasing the tax base would definitely help with high tax rates.

To advantages of living in the city will suddenly appear if more people start moving back. Corner stores will open because there is a demand. Movie theaters could open or expand. A robust urban shopping district could appear if there were people nearby that wanted to shop. The key to Harrisburg's renaissance is more people plain and simple. it was once a city of almost 100k and now it is less than that. If it wants any of its former glory it must add back population. There is a lot of vacant space in the city that could be developed. It isn't the best economic time to do it, but if affordable housing (thinking under 12k) is offered at the moment I am sure it will be one of the best sellers on the market.
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  #2723  
Old Posted Oct 13, 2010, 5:32 PM
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I have friends back in Harrisburg. I actually don't know of anyone who is planning on moving (at least not because of a perceived status of the city). As a matter of fact, a good friend of mine recently went from being a renter to buying a house on Penn Street.

The city is in bad shape right now but I know that there is a strong, loyal group of midtowners who aren't going anywhere. Once this is all over (hopefully in the next couple years) the city will come out much stronger. And quite honestly, midtown is in better shape now than it has been in decades.
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  #2724  
Old Posted Oct 13, 2010, 11:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Young Gun View Post
Well, I don't mean that Harrisburg should over develop. That would most definitely be a bad thing, but the only way for any municipality to maintain a healthy budget is to have an expanding tax base. Or at the bare minimum a tax base that can support the services that the city needs to offer. The city is landlocked and can't annex until legislation in the PA goverment reenables cities to do so. Therefore the only way to gain revenue is to build more expensive properties.
You'd probably see hell freeze over before that would happen (lol), as HBG is surrounded by some very rich townships who would fight that tooth and nail *IF* it were to ever happen.

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I actually live on 2nd on the 600 block. I own a house there and love it. I know plenty of others around me that feel the same. The issue that I believe Reed had was he thought he had to make some urbanite mecca and spent many millions to make this happen. There are two things that stop wanna be city dwellers more than anything else and that is the schools suck and property taxes are high. I am not an educator so I won't pretend to know how to fix the schools, but my ideas of increasing the tax base would definitely help with high tax rates.
Very true, and this has always been one of my points: there are really no big pros for most to buy property in Harrisburg. That needs to change.

Quote:
To advantages of living in the city will suddenly appear if more people start moving back. Corner stores will open because there is a demand. Movie theaters could open or expand. A robust urban shopping district could appear if there were people nearby that wanted to shop. The key to Harrisburg's renaissance is more people plain and simple. it was once a city of almost 100k and now it is less than that. If it wants any of its former glory it must add back population. There is a lot of vacant space in the city that could be developed. It isn't the best economic time to do it, but if affordable housing (thinking under 12k) is offered at the moment I am sure it will be one of the best sellers on the market.
I see your point for sure but this can become the chicken and the egg argument, though, and from my point of view, you won't get droves of people to move back without the stuff they need. I lived in Shipoke before I moved to the Philly area and I really loved it BUT truth be told, I didn't have a whole lot around me and my place in the 'burbs before my Shipoke digs was actually more convenient...by a long shot. I could walk to TONS of things that I just didn't have access to in Shipoke. That's a shame, and totally backwards.

The current population in Harrisburg is a joke quite honestly, and it's sad to think that places like Lancaster are actually bigger cities.

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Originally Posted by danwxman
I have friends back in Harrisburg. I actually don't know of anyone who is planning on moving (at least not because of a perceived status of the city). As a matter of fact, a good friend of mine recently went from being a renter to buying a house on Penn Street.
That is very good to hear, and obviously the total opposite experience of what I know now.

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The city is in bad shape right now but I know that there is a strong, loyal group of midtowners who aren't going anywhere. Once this is all over (hopefully in the next couple years) the city will come out much stronger. And quite honestly, midtown is in better shape now than it has been in decades.
Yeah, Midtown seems to be doing okay overall. But it's such a small area and it's a shame the good vibes couldn't spread a little further. My sister's area of Midtown was not a nice place to be...at all...and I was happy to see her get out of there after years of living there. And again she ran into the same issues: the overall convenience factors of what you SHOULD get with city living were just not there. But she has it all now...in downtown Hummelstown. That's a real shame when you think about it, that you can get a better overall urban experience there vs. in Harrisburg...

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  #2725  
Old Posted Oct 14, 2010, 4:58 PM
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Yes the midtowners are very loyal as are many in CAN. They defend the blocks from crime like they personally own the space. I don't know if any of you seen the news after the labor day weekend, but there was some very great people standing up after a crime "spree" labor day weekend. None were threatening to leave the city.

there are still bad areas, uptown and the hill are all too cliched to point out. but in the time I have spent in the city I have seen the rough areas pushed beyond MacClay and the Governor's mansion. This is good.

After thinking on the way home yesterday I came up with another prerequisite for citizens of the city and that is easy parking of their car. There isn't much that can be done in the older sections of the city, but during the infill process proper space should be allocated for parking. Be this a subsurface garage, lot, adequate width streets. I know a major annoyance of mine is parking. I deal with it, many used to the suburbs won't.

Lastely affordable housing. I am not sure if I mentioned it or not. Maybe a way to get people to move to the city is to make it affordable. It is conceiveable that a 2 bedroom condo could be sold for 80k. Maybe a 14-1600 sqft house for 125-150. Prices that with the 10 abatement program should be significantly cheaper than the McMansions out of town.


Quote:
HBG is surrounded by some very rich townships who would fight that tooth and nail *IF* it were to ever happen.
i was thinking more of Steelton, Highspire, Penbrook, paxtang. None are rich, but most wouldn't want to sign up for Harrisburgs taxes. Then again I feel that Harrisburg subsidizes many of their services. Trash, water, back up for fire, and police. And then again your argument against why their should be mergers is exactly the reason that they should. The townships got rich riding the suburban development of the city. With the city unable to expand it spills out into the townships and drives tax dollars away.
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  #2726  
Old Posted Oct 14, 2010, 10:02 PM
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i was thinking more of Steelton, Highspire, Penbrook, paxtang. None are rich, but most wouldn't want to sign up for Harrisburgs taxes. Then again I feel that Harrisburg subsidizes many of their services. Trash, water, back up for fire, and police. And then again your argument against why their should be mergers is exactly the reason that they should. The townships got rich riding the suburban development of the city. With the city unable to expand it spills out into the townships and drives tax dollars away.
But nothing is being solved then, though, as your bringing in even more poor, distressed, higher crime areas into the city. Sure this gives the city more square miles and a wee bit more of a tax base, but...I dunno, seems like it wouldn't solve much at all...and could maybe even create MORE issues for the city.

And btw, a friend forwarded me the article about another attack in the River St. garage. This is the same garage where one of my friends was beaten a few months ago (she was robbed as well, though, and this article stated that the couple in the most recent beating was not robbed). So now the parking garage where the "tourists" park isn't even safe anymore?!? Wow, that will surely bring you more much needed dollars!
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  #2727  
Old Posted Oct 28, 2010, 12:04 PM
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Replacement development for State & Second Sts. approved:

http://www.pennlive.com/midstate/ind...cil_votes.html
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  #2728  
Old Posted Nov 8, 2010, 6:05 PM
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Replacement development for State & Second Sts. approved:

http://www.pennlive.com/midstate/ind...cil_votes.html
Better than nothing. Should be nicer buildings than what it will replace, but it saddens me not to get the new Hotel. I think it would have added greatly to the downtown. i was hoping to stretch the high rise buildings several blocks closer to my house.
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  #2729  
Old Posted Nov 25, 2010, 2:26 PM
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Way to go, Harrisburg!!!
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  #2730  
Old Posted Dec 13, 2010, 2:58 PM
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For the future of Harrisburg

Just as an FYI to everyone here. According to my sources LT is up capable of being recalled starting January 16th a petition of 25% of voters in the last Mayoral election will bring the issue to a recall vote.

I am not sure how members of this board feel about Thompson, but it is something to consider.
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  #2731  
Old Posted Dec 15, 2010, 6:01 PM
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Confirming this we probably already knew...

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U.S. Census Bureau's population estimates show changing landscape in midstate

Harrisburg remains the midstate’s largest community even as its population declines, and York County remains the fastest-growing county in the midstate.

Those are some highlights of the U.S. Census Bureau’s new population estimates for 2009, which were released Tuesday.

The official Census figures from this year’s count will come out in early 2011. Still, the new estimates offered interesting snapshots of the midstate.

Key findings
The cities keep shrinking. Harrisburg, York and Lebanon all have seen their populations fall since 2000.
Harrisburg is home to 47,368. Since 2000, the city has lost 1,582 residents, a 3-percent drop.
With 45,301 residents, Lower Paxton Township is gaining on the capital city. Lower Paxton’s population now surpasses all of Perry County (45,048).
In the cities of Lebanon and York, one in four residents are Hispanic or Latino. In Harrisburg, one in six people are Hispanic.

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  #2732  
Old Posted Dec 15, 2010, 6:23 PM
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WOW!!! Frederick, MD (where I currently live) is larger than Harrisburg, PA. It is hard to imagine but if it is the truth relative to population rankings then it is so.
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  #2733  
Old Posted Dec 15, 2010, 11:20 PM
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Hey, shakman, how have you been?!? Yeah, Harrisburg is pretty tiny and probably only going to get smaller, unfortunately.

Well, everyone, it's official!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

State designates Harrisburg as "financially distressed"

It's official. Harrisburg today became the state's 20th financially-distressed city.

The state Department of Community and Economic Development announced that the city of Harrisburg qualifies as financially distressed under the provisions of Pennsylvania's Municipalities Financial Recovery Act - also known as Act 47.

Pennsylvania's capital city has been struggling under mounting debt driven in large part by its troubled trash incinerator. The city hoped the incinerator would be a money maker. Instead the large amount borrowed to refurbish it has put the city nearly $300 million in the hole.

Read more: http://www.philly.com/inquirer/break...#ixzz18E2NSobb
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  #2734  
Old Posted Dec 16, 2010, 1:26 PM
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WOW!!! Frederick, MD (where I currently live) is larger than Harrisburg, PA. It is hard to imagine but if it is the truth relative to population rankings then it is so.
Harrisburg is deceptively small. It feels larger than it is. Some of this being the fact that it occupies very little land. The same article states that Swatara Twp. almost has the same population level as the city. Realistically most of them really should be annexed to the city, but don't get me start on municiple law in PA
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  #2735  
Old Posted Dec 22, 2010, 8:57 PM
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Project adjacent to the new federal courthouse along North 6th Street:

http://www.pennlive.com/midstate/ind...y_for_mid.html

http://www.1500project.com

It appears this project is moving right along:

http://www.1500project.com/news

Building permit issued and construction planning taking place as of this month.
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  #2736  
Old Posted Dec 24, 2010, 4:15 PM
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It appears this project is moving right along:

http://www.1500project.com/news

Building permit issued and construction planning taking place as of this month.
Although I have to add a caveat: I've heard through the grapevine that presales aren't moving along very well. Not sure what that means to the project, but it will probably impact it to some degree.
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  #2737  
Old Posted Jan 4, 2011, 7:06 PM
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Although I have to add a caveat: I've heard through the grapevine that presales aren't moving along very well. Not sure what that means to the project, but it will probably impact it to some degree.
didn't that project have a different name in the past? owned by someone else?

I am on their email list they have a lot of open meeting, and there have been incentives thrown in recently it appears to make things move.
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Last edited by Young Gun; Jan 4, 2011 at 7:07 PM. Reason: add more comment
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  #2738  
Old Posted Jan 25, 2011, 6:02 PM
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Susquehanna Art Museum move could change Harrisburg neighborhood

excerpt from Penn Live
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Through the front window coated with winter grime, they can see the Keystone Trust Building across North Third Street. Until a couple of years ago, the historic stone building was a Harrisburg branch office for Fulton Bank. Now, it’s vacant and a little forlorn-looking.
In perhaps 18 months, though, the view might be much different, with new neighbors named Warhol and Degas.
Plans call for the 95-year-old Keystone building to get a major face lift and anchor one end of a new 20,000-square-foot Susquehanna Art Museum, which will stretch northward inside a two-story, glass-fronted addition. The 1400 block of North Third likely will never be the same.
http://www.pennlive.com/midstate/ind...m_move_co.html

Not the dramatic changes we saw in midtown in the past, but still good. Momentum is still moving forward. I think its an inditement that the federal court house is going it the right area. The 1500 project, SAM, continued work on capitol heights? Call me an optimist, but things still seem to be happening.
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  #2739  
Old Posted Mar 15, 2011, 5:23 PM
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How did I miss this?

Harrisburg increased its population by 1.2% over the last decade. Another few years like this and we'll be back above

I know that this isn't as much as the surrounding areas. (Is it the case of a rising tide lifting all ships?)

http://www.pennlive.com/midstate/ind...000_added.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harrisburg,_Pennsylvania
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  #2740  
Old Posted Aug 11, 2011, 12:15 PM
MidtownMike MidtownMike is offline
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excerpt from Penn Live


http://www.pennlive.com/midstate/ind...m_move_co.html

Not the dramatic changes we saw in midtown in the past, but still good. Momentum is still moving forward. I think its an inditement that the federal court house is going it the right area. The 1500 project, SAM, continued work on capitol heights? Call me an optimist, but things still seem to be happening.
Looks like this project might actually come to fruition:

http://www.pennlive.com/midstate/ind...will_host.html

And I know that Ralph Vartan has secured financing for the 1500 project...a little birdie I know who is in the know tells me it will become a reality. That's good news.
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