Month: June 2011

Is your city different from mine?

Posted by Rickey Hayes on June 21, 2011 in Blog | No Comments

Written by
Rickey Hayes
Retail Attractions, LLC

Cities are essentially all the same, no matter how large or small. Urban, suburban, rural… It doesn’t really make a difference. In base terms, cities are the corporate entities in geographic locations where people have gathered to live and co-exist. Although vastly different in many ways, there is a basic commonality or cohesion in them all. The populace share basic needs… food, water and shelter. Outside the basic needs the population needs a way to earn a living, to pursue goods and services needed to survive and opportunities to “re-create”. In other words ways to live, work, and play.

Communities as they exist need to organize, communicate and govern themselves to continue the cycle of life. Our country’s history is rich in the fundamental element of the way society is governed. We are opinionated, very vocal, and each has his or her individual ideologies about how government should work. We often take for granted our freedom in this country, and wars and conflict have occurred since the beginning of time because of difficulties in being able to figure out how life should be lived.

Because there is such a diverse population in our community and every individual has an underlying ideology about how things ought to be, city government often finds itself in the cycle of turning on itself because the goal of improving the overall quality of life for the whole is swallowed up by those in power fighting to make their own little kingdom.

It takes a vision to change the climate of “what we have always done” to “what ought to be done for the good of the city”. Along with a vision, it takes a vision caster to allow people to “see” the reality of what could be. A vision is a unifying force in itself. Where the reality of a do-able vision exists, people will be gathering around it. Where a do-able vision exists and people willing to work together to implement the vision are assembling… the future is born.

Check back in a couple of weeks for action steps to create a vision for your city…

Rickey Hayes is the principal of Retail Attractions, LLC, a firm dedicated to helping cities and developers successfully find retail sites, close deals and improve the quality of life for our client cities.