Kirk Ross on Bloomington, his home town

I wish Kirk Ross had published "A Tale of Two Towns" a week earlier, before 75 or so of us went to Bloomington.

I gently lobbied Kirk to sign up for the trip in late May when it was announced, and he was essentially non-responsive. It looked to be pricey, even with a scholarship, and Kirk's journalistic mission nowadays appears to be mostly NC politics, which he covers well and which needs covering well.  

Take-Aways from the Inter-City Visit 2012

I don't have a summary of today's sessions because I had a work conference call, so perhaps another attendee can provide one (I'm talking to you Lee Storrow). However, at the end of the sessions today we talked about what we were going to take away from the Visit. Here is a listing:

Inter-City Visit to Bloomington - Day 2

The 2nd day of our Inter-City visit was really fascinating, with interesting presentations and lots of good dialogue and ideas. We started with a panel discussion on economic development. Some tidbits from that discussion:

#ICV2012 Day One

Today 70 Orange County residents traveled to Bloomington, Indiana for a Inter-City Visit to learn how their community deals with challenges related to public policy, student housing, economic development, and other questions. These trips are only as valuable as the information we bring back to Orange County, and I hope that through my tweets, posts on Orange Politics, and work when I return to Chapel Hill, I can provide insights into our trip and improve our community.

Most of the first day was travel from Chapel Hill to Bloomington. I started the morning by boarding a shuttle bus from University Mall at 7:00 AM, and didn’t arrive in Bloomington until 2:30 PM. That being said, I already have ideas and thoughts about how we can improve Chapel Hill based on experiences in Bloomington.

First Impressions of Bloomington and Inter-City Visit

If you've followed the wealth of tweets that have come out of this first day of the Inter-City Visit you know that three groups of participants got up early this morning and made our way to Indiana by bus, plane, and bus again. We took a bus tour of Bloomington, had an opening reception, and then split into groups to have discussions about housing, downtowns, sustainability, education, and the arts. Over 60 members of the Bloomington community joined us for these conversations.

Here are my impresssions so far.
- Many of the buildings downtown and on Indiana University's campus are made of locally quarried limestone and are really lovely.

- Bloomington has a very large downtown that is laid out in a much more grid-like configuration than Carrboro or Chapel Hill.

- Bloomington is home to IU and is the county seat and has a lot of associated reasons to bring folks downtown.

- Bloomington City Hall is located in a renovated factory (the Showers Factory) that is very attractive.


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