Filed under: AL, Alabama Politics, baseball, Birmingham, Birmingham Alabama, Birmingham, AL, Cities, Civic Engagement, Civil Rights, Commentary, Cooper River Bridge Run, Dr. Martin Luther King, News Media (as source & subject), people, The Birmingham News, The Rambles, urban issues
The nuances of the 2007 mayoral campaign in Birmingham, Alabama have begun, despite efforts to the contrary. Though it speaks to a much broader issue.
Councilwoman Valerie Abbott presented a resolution at the most recent city council meeting that has been adopted by “…167 cities and towns in 40 states, representing more than 16.9 million people” according to the National League of Cities official website, specifically the page describing their Partnership for Working Towards Inclusive Communities. Rather than repost the resolution here for those that are not familiar with it, I’ll link to Kathy’s post of the document. I found it slightly disturbing that the resolution did not pass, especially considering this council’s somewhat public record of supporting initiatives that would lead the city towards what many consider its rightful place among the South’s elite. I’d read before hopping on a plane for an extremely long flight back from Seattle that the resolution would be reintroduced with opportunities to tweak as necessary, so I figured that it was only a matter of time before the council approved words that better reflected their agenda, though I was starting to doubt just what that agenda is.
Then, as I’m getting ready to run the Cooper River Bridge Run Saturday morning (I’m runner #26726 – results are normally up late Saturday if you’re interested) I decide to hop on my friend’s laptop and see what the latest is from town. Imagine my surprise when I see that a resolution will be introduced at Tuesday meeting by Frank Matthews apologizing for slavery that will be introduced by Councilor Hoyt. (FYI - comments are closed for the linked News article post.)
At first glance, it would make some sense, except when you realize that the city of Birmingham did not exist until after the end of the Civil War. Slavery could be pointed to as a reason for the levels of racial discrimination that still at times seem to permeate the city even as members of the same race nitpick about what it truly means to be “black” or “white” as we progress into the 21st century. I guess it bothers me plenty considering that this will probably be finished at 1 a.m. and I have to be awake at 5:20 a.m. (though you probably won’t be reading this until 7:30 a.m., about the time every year when I ask myself why in the world am I getting ready to run over this bridge AGAIN?) Read on though… (more…)
Filed under: AL, Architecture, Birmingham, Birmingham Alabama, Birmingham, AL, Cities, News Media (as source & subject), preservation, The Birmingham News, urban issues
This morning the city’s Design Review Committee narrowly approved demolition of the former home of the Birmingham News at 2200 4th Avenue North. The building will be removed to provide dedicated assigned parking for employees of Birmingham, Alabama’s daily newspaper. The parking will be fenced with brick piers, using trees and shrubs to edge the property. A compactor will be refaced with brick to match the design of the fence and the new home for the paper, located directly across the street.
During the presentation to the committee Hanson informed committee members that he had been able to acquire original drawings of the building as well as drawings that showed additional modifications to the 1917 structure. He also agreed to document the building’s exterior and interior using digital and traditional photography as well as video, submitting these items to the city’s archives. Hanson told those in attendance that efforts were made to transfer the entryway of the original structure to the new building, completed last year. Research led to that decision being scrapped after learning that what was believed to be stone was in fact terra cotta.
Hanson told the committee that it will take up to eleven months to complete the changes to the site. The project must still return to the committee for approval of its landscaping plan and to provide visuals of what the view will be with your back against the existing structure looking across the street. If you want to get some pictures of the old building for nostalgia, now’s the time to do it.
Enjoy the day!
Existing site plan
Site plan after demolition
Filed under: Birmingham, Birmingham Alabama, Birmingham, AL, Jimbo Wood, News Media (as source & subject), radio, The Radio Carousel, The Vulcan, WENN-FM
There have been many people, myself included, that wondered if our new rock station would ever have actual people manning the station. Initial announcements on “The Vulcan” stated that on-air talent would begin shortly after the 1st of the year. Now, something may have changed in the last few days, but a check of the station before I left for DC let me know that it was still unmanned.
According to FMQB.com, an industry site for radio professionals, the first steps have been taken to finally address the issue. Jimbo Wood from WRTT in Huntsville has been announced as the program director for 105.5 beginning February 7. Wood had been with Rocket 95.1 for seven years as their PD. According to his bio this would be a return home to Birmingham, Alabama for Wood where he got his start in Birmingham working for WERC-AM and getting on the air in 1979 for WKXX-FM. He’s also worked in Montgomery, New Orleans, Memphis and San Jose and lived in the Bahamas.
Welcome home! Things may be starting to settle down, at least a little. I’d be interested in those from Huntsville that normally listen to Rocket 95.1 commenting and letting some of us know what to expect.
That’s all for now. I’m finishing up reviewing for the first of two tests this week up here; by the time this actually posts I should be at that frustrated phase of the exam It is three hours long after all. It’s about 6:39 a.m. local time, and this is the last real break before the exam.
Enjoy the day,