Rich Town, Poor Town: Economic Reconciliation in the Berkshires of Massachusetts
Center for the Study of Economics - Company Message
RSS Follow Become a Fan

Delivered by FeedBurner


Recent Posts

Land Value Taxation in Jamaica: Now More Than Ever
Part 1, Land Value Taxation: Politics, Persuasion, and Practicality - A How-To
2016: Another Year of Advances and Retrenchment
Part 2 - Land Value Taxation: Politics, Persuasion, and Practicality - A How-To
Podcast Features Millbourne, PA, LVT aids town in fiscal rebirth

Most Popular Posts

Noted UK Think Tank: Tax Land Values
Eliminating the property tax? It must not happen, but we’ll see what happens.
Altoona, PA: City tax wholly on land values = normality
Land Value Tax in Britain: Progress While the Rear Guard Digs In
Dr. Herbert Barry's Proposal to Really Reassess Allegheny County

Categories

Act 47
Africa
Agricultural Policy
Allegheny County
ALTER
Altoona
Australia
Australian Capital Territory
Baltimore
Berkshire
Canberra
Clairton
Connecticut
Connecticut General Assembly
Current News Item
de Blasio
Economic Development
Economic Policy
Economic Rent
Economist
Ed Vargas
Education
EPA
Federal Tax Policy
Fiscal Policy and Taxes
Frederick
Free Markets
Gentrification
George Osborne
Global Taxation
Harrisburg
Hartford
Healthy Communities
Housing
Housing Policy
Hurricane Sandy
India
Ireland
Jamaica
Jeffrey Berger
Jimmy Tayoun
Justin Skariah
Kenyatta Johnson
Lancaster
Land Policy
Land Value Tax
Lanesborough
Larry Deutsch
Law and the Constitution
Legislation
Len Fasano
Liberal Democrats
Local Government
Maria Quinones-Sanchez
Martin Looney
Maryland
Massachusetts
Matt Ritter
Matthew Ritter
Mayor Rick Gray
Michael Kinsley
Michigan
Millbourne
Model Legislation
Monroe County
Montreal
Moonachie
Namibia
National Tax Policy
New Jersey
New London
New York City
NY
Oregon
Parking and Transportation
Patricia Dillon
Pennsylvania
Philadelphia
Pittsburgh
Portland
Property Assessment
Property Tax Reform
Public Health
Public Opinion
Public Resources
Public Works
Regional Tax Base Sharing
Regionalism
Regressive
Rhode Island
Rochester
Roland Lemar
Sales Taxes
Scranton
Senator Jan Malik
Sin Taxes
Smart Growth
Soda Tax
Taiwan
Tax Exemption and Abatment
Thomas Piketty
Titusville
Tom Kramer
Transportation Funding
Transportation Policy
Uncategorized
United Kingdom
Urban Blight
Urban Rejuvenation
Urban Tax Policy
Vince Cable
Wage and Income Taxes
Wales
Wealth
Wilson Goode Jr.
powered by

Incentive Taxation

Rich Town, Poor Town: Economic Reconciliation in the Berkshires of Massachusetts


Mass MoCA: How Can Public Investment Pay Off?

North Adams Massachusetts is a postindustrial old factory town with little hope. 

North Adams Massachusetts is a vibrant center for the arts poised to take off. 

Which of those two statements is true? 

How about both?   



North Adams is one of dozens of very similar towns spread all across New England much like small Pennsylvania manufacturing towns which were centered on steel, coal and railroads. Towns like North Adams, Lowell, Pawtucket, and so on produced a broader range of goods that supplied the world with textiles, clocks, brass, firearms and 20th century electronic components.   What happened to those New England factory towns is what happened to the Pennsylvania and other rustbelt towns: relocation by major employers, changes in global trading patterns, and subsequent impoverishment and depopulation for the communities themselves. A recent article in the Valley Advocate, an alternative newsweekly serving Central and Western Massachusetts posed a question: why, after millions of dollars spent and hundreds of thousands of visitors since Mass MoCA’s opening in 1999 has the city not benefited as much as it could have. The focus of the article centers on a film done by a local university team is on the damage done by the postindustrial shift, and posits that the wars in South Asia and the Middle East, recent corporate bailouts, and income disparity have delayed or halted revival of North Adams.  

The director calls for a new New Deal, to solve the problems of towns like North Adams. It is clear that such a New Deal is unlikely to happen anytime soon.  The original New Deal had a finite existence, and a re-launch would eventually end as well.  

The relationship of Mass MoCA to the continuing problems of North Adams is not clear, but valid issues of urban layout and disincentives to invest are clearly ongoing problems Problems and Solutions Closer to home  Regional planners and urban design experts have noted that the streetscape in North Adams may not be conducive to attracting visitors to downtown, which has seen many businesses come and go since 1999, hoping to capitalize on the presence of so many well-heeled visitors. The planners have a point. I've been to North Adams on many occasions, both before and after Mass MoCA opened. 

It does take some work to get from Marshall Street to Main Street.  The Mohawk Trail (Route 2) has the unfortunate effect of diving onto the streetscape before splaying out into a multilane road bordered by large parking lots, presenting a fairly significant pedestrian barrier just in getting to Main Street.  To continue to the complete essay follow this link.

0 Comments to Rich Town, Poor Town: Economic Reconciliation in the Berkshires of Massachusetts :

Comments RSS

Add a Comment

Your Name:
Email Address: (Required)
Website:
Comment:
Make your text bigger, bold, italic and more with HTML tags. We'll show you how.
Post Comment