IN PRINT: Rebirth of our cities

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by Eric Ginsburg

Our cities appear to be in the midst of a rebirth, infused with a rejuvenated confidence. Each of the three points of the Triad shows encouraging signs of a new beginning.

Those indicators come from new ventures such as West End Mill Works in Winston-Salem, from people installing guerrilla art in High Point and the beginning of an urban food forest in Greensboro. I see it in a burgeoning culinary scene in the Camel City, hundreds of residents mobilizing for a grocery cooperative in Greensboro and in a creperie, custom bike shop and other new businesses in High Point.

Our cities must retain their character and positive attributes that caused us to fall in love with them in the first place. And the change must not be at the expense or to the exclusion of the least among us. Sam Cooke didn’t sing, “A Change is Gonna Come” about waiting for an influx of hipster hangouts or a rising tide for the select few.

It’s an ambitious proposition, and there will be plenty of mistakes, but anything worth having comes at a risk. I’m confident in my neighbors and the people I’ve met in nearly eight years living here. We are resilient and capable, a socially active bunch with a strong sense of place. We know our cities aren’t weigh stations or flyovers, and we also recognize our ability and duty to leave our mark.

Relative affordability, a lack of pretention and an authentic (and hopefully growing) local culture will continue to distinguish us. There’s much to do, but it feels like more people are rolling up their sleeves.