9/18/2006

Speaking of Billings

Since I was in Billings over the weekend, I have a couple of observations.

First, to all of the locals who lament the number of casinos in Great Falls, and who complain how they make 10th Avenue South so ugly, I say you need to get out of dodge once in a while. Not only do you see as many, if not more, casinos as you drive around Billings, they are typically larger with larger, flashier signs. Come to think of it, I had the same sense the last time I drove around Missoula, too.

Maybe all of you self-appointed 'policemen' of our little community who like to get down on the casinos just have an inferiority complex. Maybe you should spend a little more time promoting the positives to your guests than denigrating local businesspeople.

Second, an open letter to our Planning Board and staff: After driving through downtown Billings, King Avenue, Grand Avenue, Shiloh Avenue, Montana Avenue, and 24th Street West, where do you see our next commercial expansion? Does the new land use code that the City rammed down our throats have extensive built-in planning for commercial development and infrastructure? Let's see, we have 10th Avenue South, 3rd Street NW and Marketplace.

Where do you folks, who are paid to see these things, see new commercial development going? What are you doing to get the infrastructure there? Is there a "plan?"

2 comments:

Treasure State Jew said...

We have never had any real municipal planning here. That is part of the reason that 10th is such a mess; no real back roads to support the businesses facing it. Is it a bypass? Is it a shopping district? It is both, and doesn't do either well.

At least trucks don't have to block the road to unload like they do on Central.

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