April 21, 2006

Freeville couple continues cruising after fire

This morning's Ithaca Journal visits Margie and George Malepe, who continue to enjoy cruises despite a fire on board a cruise they were taking last month. They're planning to take their seventh cruise sometime in the future.

The Monitor reports that a West Dryden man was arrested for DWI on April 8th at the intersection of Routes 13 and 366.

The editorial looks at the recent Housing Needs Assessment Survey (PDF) and takes a deep breath:

In terms of affordability, it seems the battle has already been lost....

The end result - as it stands now the median household in Tompkins County cannot afford a median-priced home, and less than one-quarter of single wage earners can afford a median-rent apartment. Most of the people who work, live and create the community we call home can no longer afford to live here.

The reasons for this reality are simple. In an Upstate region known for its sinking industrial economy and large-scale population flight, education-fueled Tompkins County is an oasis....

In short, Tompkins County is gentrifying — becoming polarized between a small working class in low-end housing and a growing upper-middle and upper caste living in high-end homes.

What, then, is the remedy? The answer to that depends on another question:

Who do we want to be? ...

Tompkins County clearly has some choices to make. Will we be the home of Upstate's gentry? Will we swell with a decade of historic growth? Is there some sensible middle ground between the two? Can any approach be planned and coordinated carefully among all 17 local governments to reduce sprawl as well as minimize and equally distribute pressure on existing infrastructure and tax bases?

We have a lot to talk about, and no time to waste.

Posted by simon at April 21, 2006 7:52 AM in ,
Note on photos