Cincinnati continues to lose ground on its competition

In 2002 Hamilton County voters decided to vote down a half-cent sales tax measure that would have fundamentally changed the way in which Cincinnatians move about the region with a regional transit plan that included light rail (system map), streetcars (integrated map with regional rail plan) and a completely revamped bus system.

As Cincinnatians continue to be restricted to automobile travel and limited bus service, Seattle is now celebrating the opening of their light rail system. Having fewer transportation choices is a negative and it is no wonder that the talented young professionals and creative class are choosing cities like Seattle, Portland, Charlotte, Atlanta, D.C. and San Francisco over places like Cincinnati.

These individuals are choosing life styles and social experiences over household size, affordability and even job opportunities. The jobs are following the talent, and it’s only a matter of time before Cincinnati starts feeling the heat from its companies that are having trouble attracting the young talent they need to stay competitive. In this global marketplace Cincinnati can no longer afford to rely on its history and foundational strength – Cincinnati needs to be competitive and learn how to start creating a city and lifestyle that appeals to our nation’s changing demographics and urbanizing population.

The scenes from Seattle with more coverage here:

By Randy A. Simes

Randy is an award-winning urban planner who founded UrbanCincy in May 2007. He grew up on Cincinnati’s west side in Covedale, and graduated from the University of Cincinnati’s nationally acclaimed School of Planning in June 2009. In addition to maintaining ownership and serving as the managing editor for UrbanCincy, Randy has worked professionally as a planning consultant throughout the United States, Korea and the Middle East. After brief stints in Atlanta and Chicago, he currently lives in the Daechi neighborhood of Seoul’s Gangnam district.