Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Wednesday Assortment

Celebrate Q-C's RiverVision Wednesday -QCTimes
At least 2000 of you should come out for the Swing game today, as the first 2000 fans will be getting in free to celebrate Davenport and Rock Island's selection as the most livable cities under 100,000 in the nation. Of course, hopefully not all 2000 are taken before I get there, and that the weather holds. It'll be interesting to see if a big crowd shows up for the typically deserted noon game.

No one at meeting approves of turning RiverCenter into casino -QCTimes
Well, when you only get 20 people at a meeting, you can pretty much expect it will be 20 people against whatever the meeting is about. That said, I think IOC has generated so much ill-will and negative feelings about themselves that a majority of Davenport citizens probably do oppose giving them the south side of the RiverCenter. I just urge people not to judge the feelings of Davenport off of blog commenters and 20 meeting attendees. If that were an accurate barometer we'd be talking about Niky's landslide win in 2005. I'm still not in favor of the RiverCenter idea, I don't instantly despiseit as many seem to. I'm waiting to see the whole plan.

Habitat project is delayed for further scrutiny -QCTimes
This is one of the areas that I most agree with Keith Meyer. While I personally respect Habitat's mission, I see no reason (besides saving maybe a few thousand bucks) to build houses that stick out like sore thumbs in the neighborhoods where they are built. It seems like when a low income person is trying to become an established homeowner, why start them out with the stigma of living in a clearly different style of house? With the Habitat ReStore, I would think that Habitat has enough supplies to either renovate an existing home, or build a new home that fits the character of the neighborhood. It can be done, and in the article they even mention that they're doing it in Rock Island. Do it here Habitat. Also, I'm with Keith and many others as far as being horrified by the garage-looking houses on Main. This is why neighborhood design guidelines are good, whether it be the Village, downtown, or Main Street.


At 8/08/2007 8:39 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


I completely agree with you on Habitat. The concept is a great one - really, but across this country other Habitat groups rehab homes. Locally they do not want to even look at the concept. We need to ask why. Locally we have hundreds of homes in foreclosure - most SOLO. We have more that are abandoned. We have a lot in good standing and on the market for $50K or less. Habitat states that it costs around $65K to build a new bare bones house. How about buying these many homes up for sale, have "rehab in a day promotion" and really do some good for the clients and the neighborhoods. I see it as a win-win deal.

I consider the number of homes in foreclsoure in Davenport's central city a crisis that must be addressed.

For a good example of a Habitat house that does not work - go to visit the one on Brown and I think like 11th. It is across from Harrington Park. It literally looks like a garage. If anyone thinks this fits in, I would like to talk with you. I am not criticizing the people who live in Habitat houses, I frankly don't know any of them. The people aren't the problem, it is the structures and the lack of felxibility of the local chapter that has me in a tizzy. It is just a guess, but the many good people who help build these homes most likley would not want a garage/home like this built on thier block. Some of them may not even come into my neighborhood at night.

There is no good reason that Habitat local cannot change the focus to address the needs of this particular community. When Crafton (who I used to work for and respect) says that the areas needs affordable housing and we have 5 families waiting, that does not mean we need to slap up a house and toss them in it. My resoponse it that we have hundreds of available and affordable homes for your group to buy and match families with.

It is so apparent that Davenport needs a revitalization PLAN, not a haphazard approach.Design standards are a must.

Raising our standards is in order SOLO.

Jenn Olsen

At 8/08/2007 9:38 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am very concerned about the very high number of foreclosures happening. I have experienced two in my block this spring/summer. They sit empty, neglected and inviting crime.
The two Habitats on Main that are near completion are atrocious. My family couldn't figure out what they were at first and built so close together. What is the point ?
Rehabbing exsisting housing is the key. Neighborhood Housing Services is doing a fair share of that type of improvement.
The one person I knew of who went into a Habitat Home lost the home down in the west end.
Let's take care of the available housing stock we already have. Those Habitat homes are not going to last in the long run. They are small and not built well.
It is time for us to write to the local Habitat agency and voice our opinion.

At 8/08/2007 10:26 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"The two Habitats on Main that are near completion are atrocious."

Agree, but they are not Habitat houses. They look like two duplexes.

At 8/08/2007 12:37 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The houses on Main are two duplexes for rental owener by people in another town.

We need a stop to more rental SOLO and design standards.

At 8/08/2007 3:23 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm surprised that you didn't mention that the IOC is contributing $666K a year over the next 10 to build a convention center in Bettendorf which is more or less the same amount of money the city pays an outside company to 'manage' the River Center.
Once the Bettendorf convention center or 'mini-arena' as the QCT called it last week is built the River Center will be only used for Festival of Trees.
If Davenport cares that much about their precious River Center they are going to have to pony up some major money to make it competitive.

At 8/08/2007 5:06 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Gambling talk trumps development at public forum. Specifically, some of the 75 people attending a public forum at the RiverCenter Tuesday night wanted to talk about the impact of moving the Isle of Capri's Rhythm City Casino there." August 7, 2007 11:39 PM QC Online

That is a few more people than the QC Times reported. Wonder which paper is right?

At 8/08/2007 5:23 PM, Anonymous ToryB said...

I can't speak for the Dispatch/Argus, but I specifically left out panel members, city employees, city elected officials, members of the media, attorneys for the IOC and others of that ilk when I did my count. I also counted twice.

I spoke to Darrin Nordahl (a city designer and panelist) again on Wednesday and he agreed that there were about 20 "Davenport residents" at the meeting.

Considering the point of the meeting was to solicit input from residents, I felt that was the more appropriate way to count.

At 8/08/2007 6:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

qconline said there were 75 people there

At 8/08/2007 7:03 PM, Blogger QuadCityImages said...

6:47, apparently you didn't read the comment above yours.

At 8/08/2007 7:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I really appreciate the way you are counting. It is long over due. And so true.

Keith Meyer
Third Ward

At 8/09/2007 10:31 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jennifer Olsen's comments just show her ignorance of how Habitat works. The moneys available are ONLY for new construction. Better that then vacant houses south of locust.

At 8/09/2007 10:35 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

About Olsen...she is an idiot with no plans, just criticism. She is so dumb that she came up with her own legal contract for $27.00 an hour, and then she rejected the proposal after she was the one who proposed it. Lets hope she does not make it into office.

At 8/09/2007 12:21 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What money available? Who provides the money? Habitat is an agency that runs on donations only. Are the people who dontate attaching strings? Who's the idiot? Habitat does not access HUD moeny with strings attached. Care to explain?

At 8/09/2007 12:23 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Plus, who cares, the land does not belong to the agency anyway. They can build new elsewhere. The city can forceclose on the property and collect the liens. Why should we as taxpayers eat the liens because the bank screwed up.

And - check out other Habitats across the nation. THEY ARE REHABBING. DUH.

At 8/09/2007 12:38 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

That must be Jennifer writing, nobody else would be so stupid as to assume that an organization, which is national with billions of dollars would change the way they do business just to make Jennifer Olsen happy.

First of all, it is our mission at Habitat to help people with new housing. That is the basis upon which private donations were made. We are not going to change that. Secondly, we build where there is a need for stability. I don't much care if Jenn Olsen likes the look of our new homes or not, they are new homes for people. Thirdly there are plenty of rehabbers that will take old beat up housing at the right price and rehab it to help out.
Finally, who died and made Olsen queen??

At 8/09/2007 2:27 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Boy - you hate her don't you? She must have done something really bad to you.

At 8/09/2007 2:45 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Actually no. I have never met her, but I do know what I read in the papers.

At 8/09/2007 3:31 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

to 2:45 If you believe everything you read or assume is correct in the newspaper you are not seeing the entire picture of events that take place in this community. I too have never met Ms. Olsen, but I have had the opportunity to observe her at council meetings and I give her a lot of credit for not letting people bully her from bad neighbors, council members and the city administrator.

At 8/09/2007 3:55 PM, Blogger QuadCityImages said...

To whoever says Habitat does not rehab homes, you are 100% wrong. What you mean is our local Habitat does not, but that's what we're trying to change.

That's a website of a HFH group in Connecticut, which mentions this:

Broad Street Rehab

Habitat for Humanity has obtained, through a generous anonymous donation, a distressed property in need of rehabilitation. This property, a Victorian style home built in 1884 located at 385 Broad Street, New London, has been unoccupied for years but now represents a perfect opportunity for Habitat to participate in helping the City of New London take one step closer toward its goal of neighborhood revitalization.

If you look around that site, you can see that even their new construction is 2-story, and designed to fit the neighborhood that its built in.

Don't try and act like you know everything about Habitat if you so clearly do not.

At 8/09/2007 4:34 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

QCI: You are growing some cuhoongas. I like the new you!!!!!!!!!

Are you attending the meeting tonight.

You go boy!

At 8/09/2007 5:24 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yay QCI. You are one of us, and no longer go along with the grow downtown philosiphy. Instead, you now see the value of putting money in our neighborhoods. Welcome to the Jennifer Olsen campaign!

At 8/09/2007 5:32 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree - I like the new you QCI. Or should we call you Quad City Images from now on.

At 8/09/2007 5:37 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

That "nay-sayer" sounds a lot like Dan Lubell. Say Dan, Jenn's going to make your little rental assoc. feel the hurt! HAHA!!!!!!!

Hey Jenn, I want to put your sign in my yard!

At 8/09/2007 6:09 PM, Blogger QuadCityImages said...

None of this marks a change in my philosophy. Some of you just assume that because I think downtown is the heart of Davenport, I don't value neighborhoods. This is an incorrect assumption.

At 8/09/2007 6:17 PM, Blogger QuadCityImages said...

In fact, here's a link to me saying "I definitely agree that HH, JLCS, OR Joe Citizen should try to have their infill home match the surrounding area." in the comments section back in November of '05.

At 8/09/2007 7:50 PM, Blogger Snarky Chick said...

I agree w/ QCI, downtown is what defines any city as something unique or something to drive past. You can be pro-downtown and pro neighborhoods. You can be just pro-Davenport in general.

At 8/09/2007 7:58 PM, Blogger Snarky Chick said...

And anon at 12:38 who is putting down Jenn Olsen and is with the Habitat organization, do you wonder why there is so much animosity toward your organization when you treat those with an opposing view so rudely? You rely on public donations and eventually the pockets of your few donors will dry up. Its time to appease the public (potential donors) now by working together.

Habitat is actually a partner with neighborhoods in some cities. When will you put a habitat home NEXT DOOR to your own?

And PLEASE continue to ignore the ideas of the citizens in a condescending manner and put down Jenn Olsen in the same breath. It just gives her an advantage.

I guess I must be Jenn Olsen as I'm "stupid enough" to think *this* area's Habitat could be as intelligent as the Habitat organizations in other cities. (note, I am not Jenn Olsen)

At 8/09/2007 11:15 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Habitat did do one rehab locally, their office on Grant St, in Bettendorf.

At 8/10/2007 9:59 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


So, as residents of the Davenport, and maybe the central city of Davenport, where these crappy houses always get built ---- it is appropriate to consider that the organization will set up thier office in Bett and pay taxes on it and then force these little self riteous homes down our throats in the name of the lord.

It they are going to do this kind of thing, they must make these homes attractive. Plus,what was RI thinking when they allowed Habitat to build an entire village of bad cheap houses?/

At 8/12/2007 5:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The two habitat homes I live near on E 12th are horrible. Built right next to each other they have contributed to crime and debris in our block. I used to be in favor of habitat until I had to live with their work.

At 8/12/2007 10:58 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I too live by one on Brown street. It is really really bad. It is a really small one and has lots of people in it. What would happen if one of the owners of the homes didn't want it when it was done? These people can buy a far better and larger home for the same price of thier habitat mortgage in the same neighborhoods. What is the deal? I can show you tons of houses solo for sale for $65K and less that are pretty okay and in the same areas.

At 8/13/2007 10:29 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I find it hypocritical that Habitat will have a resale store, but refuse to rehab houses.


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