Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Balancing and Phasing

The videos prepared by General Growth Properties in support of their proposed redevelopment of Columbia Town Center were the real highlight of the presentation to the county council Tuesday night. The line up of Cornell professor Ann Forsyth, Regional economic guru Anirban Basu and Roger Lewis, architectural columnist for The Washington Post, was exceptional both for the depth of their collective expertise and their ability to articulate their views. After the first video the audience returned a polite applause. This type of public demonstration of approval in a county council meeting is rare.

Anyway, this is the last of the videos I’ll post here. There are three others in addition to this and they are all available on HoCoMoJo here. They are all good. They are all worth watching.

Actually, these videos were all produced by Columbia based Pixel Workshop videographer Dave Bitner. Dave also produced this video of Councilperson Mary Kay Sigaty explaining the challenges and opportunities for Columbia’s village centers. Nicely done and wag of the wordbones tail to Pixel Workshop and HoCoMoJo.

I particularly like this video because it looks at Columbia from a very regional perspective. When Anirban says “Oh yeah I remember Columbia, that’s where we used to go for Christmas,” it struck to the heart of my own concerns about my hometown.

Find more videos like this on HoCoMoJo


Anonymous said...

Link to recent Campaign Finance survey:

Interesting Survey of Marylanders on Campaign Finance

Tom said...

Although I thought the videos were excellently produced and got a point across that the development is needed. I think they missed the point altogether. Those "opposing the redevelopment" are not against the redevelopment. They just want certain guarantees that the development will not make downtown a worse place. They do want a better place. Those on the side of getting the redevelopment moving forward need to recognize this fact and address the issues and move forward. As I always say people are arguing passionately about Columbia because they love it and want it to be a better place. We just come from different viewpoints and see a better place with different lenses. Let's face and resolve the issues. Mitigate the risks for both sides.

Bob O said...

Excellent video, kudos to the producers.

I think the point is that the people who don't like this plan are not against redevelopment, they are against this plan. In short, if they wanted to live in an urban environment, they'd move to one, like Baltimore. That's the whole point of Columbia, it's not a high density urban environment. Doh!

And to compare Columbia to Laurel...have you been down Route One lately? It's like a little piece of New Jersey, right here in the heart of Maryland. How cold it ever compete with Columbia.

Let's put on our thinking caps.

Thanks for the update!

Anonymous said...

Tom and Bob have said it well!

Also, those videos were nothing more than corporate schlock! Mindless commercials offering no substance.

The applause you mentioned, which is not so rare, was from the handful of true-blue GGP supporters; people who will make money from the development.

Anonymous said...

No substance? Seriously? These are pretty well respected experts they gathered, not people who simply sign their names to something without legitimately being behind the plan. The entire GGP plan was put together by world renowned experts in urban design. This isn't amateur hour.

I found the videos informative and well produced. Is it any surprise they supported GGP's case? Of course not. It was their night to make their case, and they did it in a compelling way.

And now the community will have an opportunity to make their case, pro and con, at the upcoming county council open forums.