To view all posts made to date, please go home to Live from Allied Drive. Otherwise, all posts have been categorized into the topics below for your convenience. Enjoy your visit, and please share your thoughts. The beauty of blogging is that all of us can engage in dialogue about issues that concern us. Please let us know what you think!

Topics of Discussion

Friday, August 24, 2007

Move Forward and Move Out

Yesterday was this big Allied Task Force meeting where I was hoping to catch the unveiling of the newest proposed plan for what they will be doing with the buildings I live in. I have been trying to keep up with the development plans so that I can guage what my living plans will be, as I hate having to move under the gun, as do most poeple. Anyway, while waiting for the unveiling of these big plans, there was this circus that took place within the Task Force surrounding alders and Task Force members battling over resolutions calling for RFPs and master developer negotiations. One resolution was drafted by the alder that represents our district that called for the city to begin negotiations with CDA to be the master developer of the properties I live within. Some say that the CDA will gentrify the neighborhood and screen people out. Maybe the tactic of the city is to draw this whole thing out until residents get so tired of hearing about all these strategies and just let happen what was likely intended to happen from the very beginning, back in 1991. As it stands now, the voices fighting the fight are not those that will be directly affected by the development about to take place. The residents within my building and the other city buildings have household incomes that are three times the rent (Hauk property rents are between $490 and $715), which was the requirement prior to moving in, and I know for my household, we are not too concerned about getting put out if that is what happens. How can you get mad about getting put out of Allied Drive? That is like getting mad about buying a burrito from Taco Bell and accidently leaving it on the bus. So what? Life will go on, we'll get another place to live that will likely be better than where we are living now. That really goes for all residents. They talk about displacement and we are all holding onto our neighborhood like it is paved with gold. Give me a break! I have mold all over my apartment and who knows, maybe that is the reason I can't stop coughing. Whatever the case, if anyone wants to come down here to take my moldy apartment from me, be my guest. I will be more than happy to get steppin'! In the meanwhile, these arguments over who develops what and who gets to put their hands in the pot of money that is at the root of this revitalization plan is exhausting. There are so many overlapping interests that are unclear here and it is no wonder that the actual residents do not get involved. I have never seen any City property residents at a Task Force meeting. There was one motion that took place where it was pointed out that all the residents voted against it. The sad thing was that none of the residents were really residents of the properties being discussed. I've asked actual residents to come out and when I bring it up, they ask why? What is the point? I guess I see where they are coming from. I don't know who let all the dogs out, but I think we'll just let them fight it out and we'll come out when it is all over and see what is left.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Katrina's Two Year Anniversary

As Katrina's anniversary approaches, let's serve a reminder.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Allied Flip Squad, Part 2

Here is another picture of the Allied Flip Squad ...

Allied Flip Squad

Several kids last summer called themselves the Allied Flip Squad and I found these pictures online and had to share them - these pictures were taken by Sassy who captured the essence of this group of kids that found something to do where there really is nothing to do. One thing that disturbed me that summer is that many referred to these kids as "bad" when these are the kids who found something to keep them busy and actually organized a group. I remember I referred to one of the kids as part of the Flip Squad and I was quickly corrected that he was not part of the squad, but he just hung out with the group. Was there an application process to get into the group? I don't know. One thing I do know is that all these mattresses in the neighborhood were being disposed because of an infestation of bed bugs down here. Yuck!

Friday, August 3, 2007

Living on Allied Drive is like OD'ing on Barbiturates

I swear sometimes it feels like coming home is a complete downer. I have been an over-achiever all my life and it is typical for me to hold down 2 or 3 jobs, run a small business or two, keep up with eBay making money online and maintain a semi-professional writing career. However for the first time in my life, I feel like doing absolutely nothing. I've wondered if I am slowing down. I am getting older ... however every time I leave Madison for any period of time, I am so invigorated and active. I evaluated everything in my life, my partner, my job, my friends, my past-times ... I really think that living on Allied Drive is a downer and de-motivates people from wanting to do anything. My partner once pointed out that altitude-wise, Allied Drive is the lowest point in Madison. If you walk outside my apartment and face Allied Drive, you can turn in any direction and from all 360 degrees, you will look up towards the surrounding areas. I live in a pit! Something in this environment literally sucks the life out of us. It often makes me wonder if it is even possible to "come up" from "down here" ...