11 thoughts on “What public square skeptics get wrong

  1. Great article. Love green space but wondering where RBTL could then find a home. The auditorium is in need of a major update. And theatre space is also an economic boost for areas.
    Interested in those ideas.

    • Agreed. The RBTL needs a new home. But if not here then where? It would be great to have this as a vibrant green space and also have a new downtown home for RBTL..

  2. Great commentary. Unfortunately oh so true of our city’s current leadership. As a co-founder of Greentopia, I and our supporters, advocated for years for support of the creation of engaged public spaces. It’s been proven over and over again in cities around the world that public place making development can catalyze at minimum a 16-fold increase in private investment. Urrently, Parcel5 is our only chance to create a central, downtown public square. Let’s not botch it.

    Looking forward to your new publication!

  3. The city it’s not a totalitarian regime. Our voice will be heard. People for Parcel 5.
    We will be at City Council meetings. We will be tree-huggers or should I say gravel slappers. We will go to court.
    We are smart and we have resources.

  4. What about parking? Without free or cheap, easily accessible parking, the suburbs won’t support it. Evidence the soccer stadium. Parking problem = death.

  5. Mr. Ericson’
    HOORAY…WELL SAID!!! This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to create something that would make Rochester a true destination city. Once again Rochester would be a place of beauty that everyone could enjoy year round.
    The sheer variety of potential events that could take place in itself is appealing and that would draw so many people. We have so much talent and expertise to offer. Just look at what our local resources accomplished in restoring the Gardenscape event this last spring! “If we build it they will come”. And as you stated so well, so would the increased revenue. The decision-makers need to remember that providing the citizens of Rochester and Monroe County with a truly unique asset such as you have described so well, would put them on a plane of well-remembered civic leaders who made a contribution to the collective character and personality of our city.

  6. People confuse open space with parks. Open space is open space. Parks are spaces filled with trees, shrubs, flower gardens, benches, statues and gazebos…not open space, but crowded space. We have enough parks; we don’t have enough good open space.

    As for space for RBTL, what about the space created by filling the inner loop? Of course I think filling the loop was a mistake. If Rochester sees a resurgence, the inner loop would have come in handy moving all the traffic coming into the city to see all the new attractions.

  7. I am astonished by the mixed reaction to Tom Golisano’s offer of 25 million dollars towards a performing arts center to be built on Parcel Five. I cant think of a better use for that space. It will bring the activity that we need to center city, and a new venue that RBTL desperately needs. There are plenty of other areas downtown for open spaces and parks.Thank you Tom for your generosity.
    Your contribution should be applauded and not surrounded by controversy. Its time for the Mayor and City Council to step up and make this happen.

  8. Given the recent announcement about the Radisson demolition and the new location for RBTL, that issue is moot. But buried in that story is the Mayor’s new proposal of exactly what you are advocating. A public/private semi-covered plaza with perimeter spaces for restaurants and cafes around a public event space. I can get behind that! But first, put some damn sod down over the gravel!

  9. Yes, the Radisson demolition may change thinking on parcel 5. City Hall would demonstrate its lack of vision if it doesn’t develope this parcel into someting like a Bryant Park. By creating an improved environment for people who live and/or work Downtown, Rochester would be setting its course for a genuine revival. Don’t listen to the corporate developers. There is excess office space as it is.

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