A commentary by a former Lake Flatonian and a response by a native San Antonioan in the Rivard Report made me think of my own feelings towards my adopted city of San Antonio.
As a newcomer to the city, I have my “challenges’ with the lack of density, the suburbansprawl, big truck culture, food/grocery options and a certain levels of convenience I was accustomed to in Portland. However, on the flip side, this city has (at least) three advantages:
1. Amaziing life! It has a vibrancy, creativity and “folksy” friendliness that is so much at the core of this place. From the store clerks to the people you meet on the streets, the positive vibe of the citizens here is quite infectious. I hope as the city grows that this does not get lost.
2. Development in the core. Working downtown I can see the evolution of the city right before my eyes. The development around the city (the River extension, Pearl, Southtown, etc.) will have a significant and positive impact on the livability quotient of San Antonio.The bike share program, which I recently signed up for, is quite a success and seems to be expanding .
3. Leadership. The challenge of a growing city is having strong visionaries and leaders to help steer it in a positive direction. What SA arguably has is strong leadership. Our dynamic mayor, Julian Castro, has already made an impact in his short time in office. The former mayor and current judge, Nelson Wolff, is committed and an outspoken advocate for a sustainable future for SA. In addition, we have newcomers such as Keith Parker, president and CEO of VIA, looking at the implementation of a long range mass transit plan for all of Bexar County.
All in all it is an exciting time to be in San Antonio!