April 14, 2015

Making Lemonade

A million times, I think I've heard the old saying "when life hands you lemons, make lemonade."  Well, I think we have a chance to do that.

Below is the email I sent to the Home Builders & Remodelers of CNY, Mayor Miner's office, and Common Councilor Helen Hudson, asking them to consider tackling a 'rebuild' project in Syracuse this fall, since the Parade of Homes has to be postponed until next summer.

The article mentions that the HBR is looking into doing some other event, and I hope they'll consider my idea (or part of it, or something similar).  After all, among the objectives of the organization is this:
to bring together the best and most reliable industry associated businesses, for the purpose of raising the bar of professionalism and customer service, and moving towards the goal of affordable housing for everyone in CNY. 
I have long maintained that a Parade of Homes in the city, not with brand new houses, but with a similar economic investment, could completely transform a neighborhood.  Pulling together all of the many resources available here, from the HBR to the Land Bank  to the myriad branches of government and even local organizations and businesses would be a challenge, but the reward - a renewed neighborhood, increased tax base, and a chance for existing homeowners to benefit as well - should be worth it.

Here's hoping that this time, with a basket full of lemons, we get enough lemonade to go around.

I read on Syracuse.com this evening the unfortunate news that this fall's Parade of Homes at Cranebrook is being delayed until next summer because site work could not be completed timely. 
 As we know, many people look forward to the Parade each year, most for decorating but some for the opportunity to get their dream home. And I know the charities that staff the volunteers for each of the Parade homes may also feel the pinch with the delay. 
Appreciating that, I would say that while this is a setback, perhaps it's also an opportunity to follow the old adage and make some lemonade out of lemons.
 Could this be the chance we've been waiting for to connect the HBRCNY and the City of Syracuse, not in traditional 'Parade' sense, but through a blitz rebuild Parade?  A chance of a lifetime for an urban neighborhood?  A chance for people to shine who usually don't get the spotlight? 
I encourage you to read my blog post on having a Parade of Homes in the city -- not on the outskirts of the city limits, but smack dab in the heart of the city, in a city neighborhood that could use some help and attention. A neighborhood like Skunk City. 
I think this could be a great opportunity, with the creativity, energy, and know-how that the Home Builders, City Hall, and Common Council can bring to the table.  
Thanks for your consideration.  

Stay tuned.

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