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  #1  
Old Posted Aug 13, 2008, 5:38 PM
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Utica, NY – Always Reaching Toward Greater Heights!

You may have to be patient with these photos or reload the page or something – I had to use Imageshack since my Photobucket bandwidth is running low. Sorry about that.

I recently spent a week and a half on vacation in upstate NY. Most of that time was spent at a lake in Adirondack State Park, but my family and I drove down to Utica one day (it was supposed to be a rainy day – it wasn’t). I hadn’t been there since I was too young to remember.

Many upstate NY cities have been in decline for a while, and Utica is no exception. In the 1800s, Utica benefited from its location along the Erie Canal and became a textile industry hub. By WWII, though, most of the manufacturing had left for the South. In the mid 1900s, the population was over 100,000. Since then Utica has been bleeding people, though there has recently been an influx of immigrants from abroad, most notably from Bosnia, but also from Somalia and Southeast Asia. The current city population is under 60,000 with about 295,000 in the Utica-Rome metro area.

The downtown area was fairly quiet, but there were some people walking around. We drove around some rougher areas outside of downtown where there were more people out, but I didn’t get the feeling that they’d appreciate me sticking my head out of the car with a camera, so I didn’t get too many photos of those areas. There were some pretty nice old home that we drove by, too, many of which had been converted into doctors’ or lawyers’ offices.

This is not meant to be a comprehensive look at the city – we were only there for a couple hours, and I took pics of what I saw.












Genesee St – the main street in downtown Utica.















I knew I recognized it from somewhere…



Pedestrian mall?


And you thought the Liberty Bell was in Philly




Set your watches



I think all the rest of the photos were taken from the passenger’s seat in my parents’ car, so lower your expectations accordingly










I wanted to see what this house would look like if it were built on a slope…















I was pretty impressed by this apartment block…

















The end
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  #2  
Old Posted Aug 13, 2008, 6:03 PM
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Looks MUCH better than jmancuso led me to believe.

I love that slogan in the first pic... reminds me of: "Watch out, Utica! Springfield is a city on the grow!"

I hope you indulged in one of these while you were vacationing in Utica:
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  #3  
Old Posted Aug 13, 2008, 6:07 PM
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There are some nice buildings, like that Stanley movie theater and some of the houses, but Utica looks dead. You can tell from the scale of the buildings and their conditions that everyone has left.
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Old Posted Aug 13, 2008, 6:29 PM
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Great tour!
This is one of a very few northeastern cities I haven't been to. Some very impressive structures there for a small regional city. I also liked the pics of the storefronts and residential areas. That big red stone apartment building is stunning. The city does seem to emminate depression, though, in that Upstate kind of way.

I hope you don't get set upon by some new forumer named Uticaisbeautiful2008 or something. Oy.
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  #5  
Old Posted Aug 13, 2008, 6:55 PM
TinChelseaNYC TinChelseaNYC is offline
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This was a great tour. Sure looks kind of sad, though.
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  #6  
Old Posted Aug 13, 2008, 8:34 PM
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Some good and some not so good neighborhoods, but, Utica has a lot of nice old buildings. Thanks!
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  #7  
Old Posted Aug 13, 2008, 9:13 PM
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Nice tour of Utica. The city contains some impressive classic brick architecture.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Evergrey View Post
I hope you indulged in one of these while you were vacationing in Utica:
Mmmmm Black & White cookies. One of my favorites...
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  #8  
Old Posted Aug 13, 2008, 10:17 PM
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Great pics. Actually Utica is a pretty decent place....a very liveable city, and from personal experience far nicer than most would suggest.
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  #9  
Old Posted Aug 14, 2008, 12:12 AM
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It doesn't look too bad. I kind of looks a lot like Wheeling.
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Old Posted Aug 14, 2008, 2:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TinChelseaNYC View Post
This was a great tour. Sure looks kind of sad, though.
Having spent a fair amount of time there, I felt exactly the same sadness you spoke of. The place looks and feels like urban "death," yet there is such great potential to revitalize this city and turn it into a gateway destination once again.
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  #11  
Old Posted Aug 14, 2008, 2:24 AM
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Now this brings back memories. I lived there my entire childhood until leaving for college and never returning. My whole family and most friends have since left. Really sad - the architecture is quite nice now that I look back at it.

The beautiful apartment building used to have an identical sister building that went up in flames in the late 80s. I remember being disgusted (even as a child) looking at it in ruin. Though it also scared the heck out of me that it was completely demolished in just a few hours. Not built very close to current codes I'd imagine.

The "black and white" cookie is known as a "half moon" in Utica. Speaking of it as anything but will stop music and get you immediately exiled by a local if they hear it. There is not much left in Utica except the past and their questionably invented/re-named foods.

Nice pics - thanks for the memories!
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Old Posted Aug 14, 2008, 3:27 AM
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you can see the grandeur Utica once had for a smaller regional city. sad to see it in its current state.
thanks for the pics
and I do enjoy "half moons" as you can acquire them here in Buffalo as well.
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  #13  
Old Posted Aug 14, 2008, 3:30 AM
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Nice tour. I'll be visiting Utica next summer.
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Old Posted Aug 14, 2008, 3:39 AM
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Certainly a common sight in the northeast.



There is quite a bit of grit, but it also looks as if quite a few buildings are renovated. Definately in a transition. Great shots!!
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  #15  
Old Posted Aug 14, 2008, 4:00 AM
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I think this photo just about sums it up:

Quote:
Only it seems in Utica that tomorrow is never today.

Like most of Upstate, it's got great housing stock, just not enough people to fill it.
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  #16  
Old Posted Aug 14, 2008, 11:00 PM
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great pics!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ShadowMaster View Post

Mmmmm Black & White cookies. One of my favorites...


steve-o is right, referring to them as anything other than 'half-moons' will get ya run outta town by the few people that are left. plus, they differ from the black and whites sold elsewhere becuase they are more like cakes than actual cookies. the one in evergrey's post is not a true half-moon but the kind you'd find in NYC.

anyway, utica really tries to hang on to what it's got left but it just cannot compete against continuous job loss and the taxes. it's quite sad. my family is all still there except for a brother who moved to syracuse but all my friends in high school that were career orientated have long since moved away.

the area surrounding utica is actually a pretty decent place to live if you have a steady job becuase the scenery is amazing, the towns and villages are picturesque and the pace of life is a step back in time.
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  #17  
Old Posted Aug 15, 2008, 12:53 AM
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The Amtrak station should have been included in the pics. It's the old New York Central station.

The inside is magnificant, but a little difficult to lens, unless you shoot a few from different angles.
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  #18  
Old Posted Aug 15, 2008, 1:11 AM
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^ sorry, I was only there for a couple hours.
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  #19  
Old Posted Aug 15, 2008, 2:01 AM
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Jumpin fuckin Jeepers!

I am going there in the first weekend of October. I am planning a trip to Northern New England. I leave work on thursday night, and I am driving 6 hours straight there and landing a hotel. Then going through the Adirondacks the next day, up through Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine.

Evergrey is right. Jmancuso makes it seem like it is hell on earth with one dude left living there.

You think this town could maybe sell some stuffed bears and wooden pipes for tourest going to the Adirondacks. The economy would pick up a little.
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  #20  
Old Posted Aug 15, 2008, 2:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JackStraw View Post
Jumpin fuckin Jeepers!

I am going there in the first weekend of October. I am planning a trip to Northern New England. I leave work on thursday night, and I am driving 6 hours straight there and landing a hotel. Then going through the Adirondacks the next day, up through Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine.

Evergrey is right. Jmancuso makes it seem like it is hell on earth with one dude left living there.

You think this town could maybe sell some stuffed bears and wooden pipes for tourest going to the Adirondacks. The economy would pick up a little.
with all due respect, evergrey never lived there, i have. the city may look OK from those pics becuase he hit several of the better parts of town but the economy is in shambles and most of the city reflects it. i never implied it was "hell on earth" and it will always be home to me.

btw ForAteOh, my parents lived in that apartment block (the obleston) when they first got married and there was a twin (the kanatenah) catty corner to it that burned down in 1994.
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