It appears residents of Spokane have been making some waves as of late. Word got out last month that there is some interest in establishing a gay district in some part of the city. Not only did it hit the AP news wire, but just last week made for some good commentary on NPR. The interest follows on the heels of one of Richard Florida's key tenets: that a community of diversity, culture, and recreation are critical elements in attracting the holy grail of demographics - THE CREATIVE CLASS- to ones economy. The topic and proposal are highly controversial, and from the get-go, have made for a lively debate across the city...the state, and even the country. Unfortunately snappy and ultimately condescending comments from writer NICHOLAS K. GERANIOS like, "Spokane -- which in trendy Seattle is shorthand for tragically unhip..." does nothing more than simplify an issue that is much more complex. Another example of Nick's hard hitting reporting.
While the city has no role in this effort, and has dedicated no resources to pursue it, the question raised by Metrospokane is:
How (or) should cities wield development regulations as an economic development tool for attracting a 'creative class'?