Tuesday, January 16, 2007

I'm a little slow on reporting this but...

the Twin Towers construction project by the mall is kaput, at least for now. I guess the anticipated flood of yuppies panting to move into condos by old sac has not materialized. I was in Natomas the other day and I solved the mystery of where they would actually prefer to live.

24 comments:

Anonymous said...

the only difference between you and them, is that you're full of contempt and angst.

It will be interesting when the towers are built and few residents are standing next to you at the fools foundation - or maybe at sampinos or the farmers markets or the queen of sheeba.

what then will you do? dig deeper or get over yourself?

beckler said...

It's true, I am full of contempt and angst...AND bear salami that I picked up at the Russian Market right next to Pattaya Thai on Watt in North Highlands. You really should try this stuff, future imaginary building-dweller. I also got the gypsy salami (made of real gypsies!) and smoked pork tenderloin. All for 7.50, quite a deal.

As for the twin towers, looks like this could be part of a nationwide trend

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/01/16/realestate/16rentals.html?em&ex=1169096400&en=72884fc18ecffbe1&ei=5087%0A

Smitty said...

It's kind of weird, almost Bush-like, in the thought that Sacramento is a Giant City with Hordes of The Great Unwashed, who want to live here. I think it's just cheaper than the Bay Area for many.

The City Council makes it difficult for the Creative Class to flourish, and you need freaks to make a city livable. Portland is a huge example.

As far as I know, Tower is doing fine. It still sells popcorn. The hours are cut back and the Crest got Pan's Labyrinth. Wait and see where Volver goes, I reckon.

beckler said...

A thought just occurred to me, doesn't that first comment smack of Voisin's writing style? I'm flattered that she reads.

wburg said...

What is it that Portland does to encourage the creative class that Sacramento doesn't do?

I'm full of angst and contempt too. I'm just hoping that Saca gets broke enough where he has to ditch a couple projects, like the one that would call for demolition of the Bel-Vue Apartments building and its associated quarter block at 8th and L Street.

Anonymous said...

well you can't go broke spending other people's money now can you Burg? so don't count on it happening on its own.

Smitty said...

Places for live bands is a major one. The City shuts down places instead of working with places to keep them playing.

Cities need musicians, artists, actors, engineers and programmers to thrive.

I'm sure I've left out some of The Creative Class in that, but I just wanted to remind people that engineers and programmers are creative.

In the 1990s, Sacramento had so many places to play that there'd often be 2, sometimes 3, shows in a night you'd want to go to. I remember talking with Smiller once where we both knew it wasn't going to last.

People chose to move here for the independent arts. For a while, a lot of it was run-off from the Bay, and that wave is ebbing.

Maybe it's just my conversations with Mike R Mike about how we'd like to find a new place to live, but we're both lazy. Sooner or later, we'll get out-priced to live in The Grid. Bleh.

pedro said...

1. Smitty is indeed correct

2. Speculators and Hype Artists have driven real estate in Midtown out of sight, the these greedy bastards were ably helped by the State and City and their quasi private organizations...therefore where are the kids and people who make Sacramento interesting going to live?

3, Saca was as his name implies, Saca shit...not only was the "Calpers Loan" not a done deal, they pulled the rugout from the guy...so there he is, out there with his fancy cars and BS, and he doesn't even pay the help...

JBG said...

People chose to move here for the independent arts. For a while, a lot of it was run-off from the Bay, and that wave is ebbing.

Hey, there's always Yuba City/Marysville, burgs untouched by the kind of "hipsters" Saca was banking on here. Of course, when every other conversation begins: "Well, when I was doing joint time ...," You know your artsy options are kinda limited.

But guess what! We've got C.W. Little's House of Chicken & Waffles!

mrs. troublemaker said...

i'm chuckling at the thought that the tower dwellers would hang at the fool's foundation. i mean not to pigeon hole people but i've spent some time in the past few years waiting on and interacting with tower dweller types and i just can't picture them hanging at fool's. i also find it funny that whoever made that post is a frequent reader as is evidenced by the reference to sampino's. ah well, atleast folks are paying attention. maybe one of these days one of the powers that be will read this and say, hey, we really should be making allowances for mixed used communities and theses so-called creative types....

it could happen...

Anonymous said...

SURREALESTATES

~SIRREALESTATES

Anonymous said...

mrs. troublemaker, thank you for putting my point into such simple words. though it's really not all that difficult to picture - there's all sorts of people outside your bubble.

also, you really shouldn't be using that "creative" word as a crutch. it reflects poorly on the people who work tirelessly at their trades and retain an open and interested perspective.

smitty said the city needs creatives to thrive - and while i find that plenty flattering, i certainly don't need an "allowance" from the city to validate it.

KLJ said...

I don't need to make a snobby effort to segregate myself, my economic state does that for me.

Downtown is increasingly expensive in terms of rents and property values. Folks who prioritze making music, writing, making films, etc. don't tend to have a-lot of money, so now a-lot of these folks are leaving midtown for Oak Park, Del Paso or even leaving Sac entirely, heading for places like Portland (I miss Bob Moricz.) As Oak Park and Del Paso become gentrified more people will leave for other cities.

I watched it happen in SF. The artistic people that make that city vibrant migrated toward The Mission when everyplace else got too expensive. This made The Mission hip and the result is that it's becoming too expensive. In the last couple of years a big migration of artsy fartsy types toward Oakland has taken place. The city of Oakland seeing the value of this has made efforts to be hospitable toward events, films shows, etc.

If you want to keep creative people around, create an environment where they can afford to put on shows, and make a living, and pay their rent. Just keep in mind that there is a value to these residents who have something other than fat wallets to offer a city.

Nobody I know could afford to live in the Towers. Does this make me a snob? Thats okay. It is true, I tend not to like rich people. I can live with that. I give each rich person I meet the benefit of the doubt. How can I not. I'd very much like them to give me some of their money.

mrs. troublemaker said...

it appears as tho' i got anonymous' dander up.

tho' i probably didn't articulate it as well as i could have last night, what i'm essentially saying is that i think the folks who have the money to build a tower, or live in tower don't so much need their right to affordable housing represented to the powers that be. now on the other hand said folks who are working tirelessly at their trades who are squeezed out of the rental and housing markets in a community that they called their own for many long years maybe do. there is something fairly frustrating about pioneering a crappy neighbor and then have it gentrify and force you out. when i left midtown for oakpark my rent was about to double had i chosen to stay where i was. i don't care who you are that's a big difference to dump on somebody.

as for said creative class, i think the folks who know me on this list know that i have been working tirelessy in my "trade" for many years now. in fact i was one of the people who ended up in oakpark due to rent increases and stayed there until, well i wont finish this sentence. i'm also a big sac booster and i think that a love for sac and the community that many of us enjoy down here is part of the reason folks get so defensive about this topic.

in some respects, i'm not totally sure what anonymous' point is. that rich people are people too? or that some of us maybe surprised to find out that there are rich folks among us who are just like everyone else? it's silly to break it down in to those terms. i don't care who you are or what you make, overall i get along with everybody, i just don't want to see the really great creative community that exists downtown shrivel up and die.

okay, i'm getting dizzy on this soapbox...

wburg said...

smitty: I'm plenty aware of who the creative class is. I like to consider myself one, as someone who has played in a band, released my own records, and booked live shows and club nights. The fact that my band is awful, my records are shitty and nobody comes to my shows or club nights is a side issue. I won't even mention how few people are buying my book. Somehow I find myself on both sides of the fence, because while I'm a homeowner and thus not likely to be forced out of midtown due to price pressure, my income is low enough that I would technically qualify for low-income housing in Sacramento.

While I agree that the Sacramento entertainment taskforce is the new Witchfinder General, and that shutting down live music venues is bad, my question is WHAT IS THE CITY OF PORTLAND *DOING* to promote their creative class?

The point is this: If Portland is actively running some sort of program to promote the arts and live music, I WANT TO FIND OUT MORE ABOUT IT. The city government and staff is as enamored of Portland as the indie scene is, and if Portland is doing it there is a chance that Sacramento's city government can be talked into doing it too.

Anonymous said...

Portland is pretty big on the gentrification tip as well. Has anyone been down to the pearl recently? Sparkly white faces with vintage furniture in the back of the Volkswagen goodness! I think the real advantage the Northwest has over Sac is the weather and the pre-existing coolness of the scenes in those cities.

Anyway, Sac is alright, it is just bloated with bay area housing money right now, it will go away or absorb itself in repossessed hummers and bankruptcies.

wburg said...

I suppose I'm also taking issue with Smitty's comparison of the early nineties to today in terms of shows. I was around then too, and there was lots to do, and we did go through a late nineties/early oughts dry spell, but last Friday I had to sit and stump myself about which of four shows I wanted to attend (a noise show at Luna's, a rock show at the Distillery, a touring psychobilly band in Old Sac or a my favorite local gothclub at Country Club Lanes) not counting the shows I didn't want to attend or the movie at Fools Foundation, before I decided it was too cold and I was tired so I stayed home playing videogames instead. This happens more often than not these days (both lots of things to do and me being too tired to go), Sacramento Witchfinder General or no.

Weather is relative. Personally I lived through four years of rainy-ass Northcoast weather in Arcata and that was pretty much enough for me. Some folks like the sun and can deal with the heat, some folks don't.

As to real estate prices, prices are deflating like a lead balloon...seen real estate listings lately?

Anonymous said...

The early 90's weren't all that great, remember "The Wonder Stuff"? Or how about Neds Atomic Dustbin? Crash Test Dummys? gaaaaahgg! haha... I do miss me some proper shoegaze though. I think the Sacramento music scene is fine really, but I probably spend 10X more time on Xbox Live than I do listening to new music so I guess I can't complain when we play to the John Courage Advertisement at Fox and Goose because people are home getting their "Gears of War" on.

Anonymous said...

Liv or whoever would know-
What is the deal with the Sac Metro Arts Commission? Have you worked with them before? This article mentions that they want to help artists financially so they could keep living in Sac.

http://www.capradio.org/articles/articledetail.aspx?articleid=3252

anna

Anonymous said...

someone said:
>As to real estate prices, prices are deflating like a lead balloon...seen real estate listings lately?
>

i've seen the listings lately. still no chance whatsoever of me being able to afford to buy a house. and i don't know of anyone who has had their rent lowered, either. maybe eventually rents will go down, but it's just as un-affordable to live in midtown now as it has been for the last few years.

Smitty said...

Hey Burgo,

I know that you do art, but I don't know if PDX promotes the creative class. I just haven't heard about them making it hard for them.

Even when I was a little kid, when Phoenix Field got shut down in Orangevale, I remember asking, "How can people move next to something noisy then get it shut down by complaining". Makes no sense, but that's what's going on with the Distillery (and race tracks around the country).

And Sacramento let Charles Twilling and Troy Agid sink in tons of money, time, and effort for Junta before shutting them down. The City Council had doomed it from the start but the CC wasn't going to pull them aside to say, "you know we're not going to let this happen."

They make it hard for the Old Sac clubs to exist, it's not just indie music.

Once again, I'm not kidding when I say we should vote in Soriano to CC whether he wants to or not. He can box ears to make people play fair.

Anonymous said...

hey anna,
those SMAC grants mentioned on cpr are pretty cool but they're really small, $600 or less. they were offering larger fellowships but that program got suspended until 2007. their websites has a lot of great links to other grant organizations tho' like the Rockefeller grants and some of the other biggies. a lot of the outside grants focus on the performing arts tho' as opposed to visual stuff so i don't know much about 'em. there's also art in public places stuff although i have a couple of friends who do those and they often exceed their budgets which i've heard is not uncommon for public works. overall i think it will be interesting to see what happens with the new director.

-liv

wburg said...

C-had: You weren't chillin with the Loft crew and rocking out with the Yahmos and Pounded Clown. I never heard either of those bands, because I was bumpin' the Popesmashers and Sea Pigs on my boombox.

SMAC has other grants too--the Noisefest has gotten several Artscapes grants to the tune of a couple grand apiece. Now if I can just figure out a way to have more than the regular few dozen nerds actually attend...

smitty: Is the Distillery thing still an issue? Last I heard there were complaints, but they aren't still in danger of being shut down, are they? As far as Charles and Troy go, they knew that there was a redevelopment plan for the block (I talked with Charles about it) but they went ahead on the off chance that the whole deal would fall apart and ownership wouldn't be transferred. It is fairly dickish that the city didn't bother to say "hey, this is going to happen" but it's not like the writing wasn't on the wall.

Anonymous said...

There is plenty of great stuff going on in Sacramento, but barely anyone shows up. There is no lack of creativity just a lack of audience members.