Now, it’s probably true that for anyone monitoring the Brooklynization of other midsize cities, from Baltimore to Minneapolis to Seattle, the Gulch in this early stage may seem like small beer. But for a city that, like many others, gave way long ago to corporate parks and spaghetti junctions, it’s a noteworthy thing for the New South to give up even one block to New Urbanism.However, blogger Jeffries Blackerby, who says that Nashville is a city that he has "tried to love for many years," exaggerates the greenness of the initiatives with which Karl Dean campaigned and won in 2007.
I followed that campaign closely, and more than any other subjects I heard Karl Dean emphasize public schools, public safety, and economic development. In fact, if you look to Karl Dean's inaugural address, those are the very issues he embraces, referring to air pollution once in passing only as a means to focus on regionwide economic development. While Mayor Dean did appoint a green ribbon committee, I would not characterize environmental protection as the effective cause of Karl Dean's win or the hallmark of his tenure. Beyond the green ribbon committee he has had many opportunities to underscore sustainable economic development as raison d'etre and has not.
Thanks for the neighborhoods blog love, New York Times, but let's not hype the progressiveness of our Mayor's Office or forget that there are significant campaign promises he made that have yet to be realized.