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Rochester Institute of TechnologyThere have always been town-gown tensions in any community with a large college. Recently, we’ve seen that tension in debates over student housing.

Henrietta, home to Rochester Institute of Technology, restricted the number of students living in single-family rental homes to three. Henrietta residents are opposed to a 600-bed gated apartment complex.

In Syracuse, a neighborhood near Syracuse University wants to crack down on landlords who rent to students and keep single-family homes intact.

Students change a character of a neighborhood. There could be more people per unit, more traffic, more noise, more parties and more activity. Absentee landlords who don’t maintain properties are a big problem.

There are also positives to student moving in nearby. They bring vibrancy and money. College neighborhoods typically have a lot of goods and services. Henrietta enjoys Park Point and Strong/Highland will enjoy College Town

The question is where does this student activity belong? Students want freedom to live in an apartment of their choosing. They should have that freedom, as they are adults. But it’s not wrong for communities to look at their impact and discuss ways to mitigate any of the negatives.

Links of the Day:


– “It wasn’t until the stupid lock-down was ended that a citizen found the second murderer.” I really liked this essay questioning the need to lock down Boston.

– “I need more belts.” Victims of the Boston Marathon bombing were loaded into a prisoner transport van, where it was so dark, one man thought he had died.

– Cuomo admits he doesn’t make bills public until the last minute, in what appears to be backroom lawmaking.

– Kodak’s Eastman Business Park as a landfill full of radioactive waste that few people know about.

– The Buffalo Bills’ former equipment manager, who worked for the team for 35 years, said he was fired because of his age.

New York City debates moving Madison Square Garden.

CEOs earn 354 times what the average worker makes.

7 Responses to Student Housing Debate

  1. April 21, 2013 at 12:45 pm Lee Drake responds:

    Alternatively you could have drug dealers and criminals moving in next door. It’s not like (especially around the U of R, and particularly across the river) all the neighborhoods there are full of sparkles and sunshine…

    While some students may party or be up late at night – characterizing all students that way is just as bad as racist characterizations – many many are responsible, quiet, and law abiding neighbors.

    As a parent with a child at college (not in Rochester) the character of the neighborhood a kid moves into is paramount – every parent wants their kid to live in a safe, well policed and well protected neighborhood. My kid’s college is in the center of south central LA – gangland and murder central. ANYTHING the school does to increase the safety and security of the kids there, and provide a safer environment is ok by me, including bulldozing ghetto neighborhoods to build modern rental facilities. One of the neighborhood my son was considering moving into had a 29 out of a possible 100 on the crime safety chart. Nuh uh. Students are just as entitled to a safe neighborhood as anyone and if the college wants to spend the money to make a neighborhood safer I say let them. Now if you want to talk about pouring TAXPAYER dollars into that, it may be another question – the U of R has plenty of cash without Rochester throwing their money away on their development projects.


  2. April 21, 2013 at 1:08 pm Lee Drake responds:

    What your “CEOs” make post fails to point out is that the CEOs referenced are the CEOs of public companies in the fortune 500. A tiny percentage of the business owners in the US. This sort of “lumping” of privately owned businesses with public “big box” international companies falls into the same category as branding all people of colors criminal because some of them are, or all Asians as good at math because some of them are. CEO is an awfully broad term which the AFL/CIO loves to toss around. Be sure you look carefully at WHICH CEOs you are branding before you go around writing out class warfare tickets. Remember the CEO of a small business is frequently the ONLY person who cannot be paid (legally) in hard times. That they are putting everything they own on the line as most small business CEOs sign personal guarantees at the bank. Almost every small company CEO I know puts more hours in than the average worker, and spends more time on their business than any hourly employee. They get no overtime. They pay unemployment but can never collect. Same with disability and workers comp. I’m not saying every small business CEO is an angel – but I am saying that most are just as hard, if not harder, workers as their employees and their compensation is typically commensurate with the extreme personal risk they take when starting up and maintaining a small business. So be careful who you brand with your broad brush.

  3. April 21, 2013 at 1:17 pm Lee Drake responds:

    And finally in terms of the “essay” written by the gentleman who didn’t like the idea of locking down Boston to find the terrorists – the idea worked. It contained the threat to a very limited area, it ended up keeping residents of that area safe, it resulted in fewer casualties, it allowed emergency personnel, vehicles, air support, dogs, to be rushed to the scene of potential spottings of the criminal quickly. It helped to ensure that people were safer and there was less chance of a civilian falling victim to crossfire or kidnapping. If you listened to the chatter on the police radio (as I did all night) you would know that because people moving about was the exception rather than the rule the police could immediately respond and investigate any movement of anyone suspected of being the perpetrator immediately. It deprived the fugitive of hundreds of potentially empty and uncleared homes as people went off to work (he was trying NOT to be discovered and one 911 call would have been the end for him). It deprived him of unsearched vehicles entering or exiting the area where he was. The police worked 18 hour shifts. While they loosened the “lock down” they also maintained the cordon around the area right up until he was found and captured. No one entered or left that area even after people were told they could move around, without having their vehicle searched. Remember that this guy was running around leaving explosives and pipebombs all over in their wake. What if some kid had stumbled across one – then would the essayist be so eager to say that the lockdown shouldn’t have happened? There were at least a dozen unexploded ordinance cleared during the night of the lockdown and even more investigated – there were so many they were running out of duty-ready bomb sniffing dog teams and EOD teams to dispose of the bombs. They were all kinds of bombs – electronically detonated, simple dynamite with fuse, pipe bombs, and another pressure cooker bomb. You seriously think it was a good idea to let people wander around the streets with that stuff being found left and right?

  4. April 21, 2013 at 1:20 pm Lee Drake responds:

    So from the article on CEO pay by our totally unbiased AFL/CIO. They apparently tracked and I quote ” tracks salaries, stock options and equity awards for top executives”. Hmm. Did they also only track “salaries, stock options and equity awards” for the top non-executive employees? Because that is what it would be fair to make that comparison too. If you want to track “salaries, stock options and equity awards” for ALL CEOs and compare that to ALL workers that is a fair comparison.

  5. April 21, 2013 at 5:29 pm RaChaCha responds:

    Indispensable reading on this topic from UB Spectrum:

  6. April 21, 2013 at 5:48 pm RaChaCha responds:

    Not to go all “Lee Drake” here with the multiple comments, but this on the Kodak nuclear waste:

    It’s astonishing to me to see the D&C print an article that all but proclaims they just “discovered” the existence of this waste. The fact is, environmental activists have been all over Kodak for decades about waste disposal issues. Given Kodak’s longtime primacy in the economies of Rochester and Upstate, State regulators have been VERY accommodating of Kodak on this, and local media — including the D&C — did little if any watchdogging. The phrase “swept under the rug” comes to mind. Also, Kodak wasn’t above co-opting the environmental community, for example with funding the Center for Environmental Information — at one time, one of Rochester’s marquee environmental organizations. In addition to the funding, some of the employees there had spousal, and perhaps other, connections with Kodak.

    Kodak was always the goose that laid the golden eggs for Rochester, and always would be, and so no one would do anything that would harm it. But when the golden eggs stopped being laid, the media became willing to tell us that those eggs weren’t just gold, but actually had significant content of other heavy metals, as well.

    On Kodak and hazardous waste, there’s a Pulitzer-worthy series of articles out there waiting to be written by an enterprising journalist.

  7. April 21, 2013 at 5:50 pm theodore kumlander responds:

    It is interesting how fast the government was able to lock down a major city in 24 hours for a fugitive case that the state and local law enforcement agency handled anyway.

    it is also interesting how fast the government can suspend our so called rights and the government has the lawyers , guns, and money to do it.

    to the gun lovers enjoy those gun rights you think you have.

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