30 December 2016

Mormons Making Fun of Themselves (Missionary Parody)

2 dudes who name themselves Joseph + Smith - how original is that, folks? -  know how the other side [they call Mormon-haters] thinks, using Adele's mega-hit.
Not home when they come knockin'?
Now what about that LDS Smile?
Published 8 months ago . . . got a listen on BBC today

Open, Transparent & Accountable Here in Mesa? ...Then Why Do We Only Get "Approved Minutes" ???

It's not easy and instead of an actual transcript of Mesa City Council regular meetings and study sessions or the goings-on at frequent public board and committees?
If - and when - these 'approved minutes' are made available doesn't seem to follow the prescribed regs in the city code for the timely publication of public actions taken by taxpayer-funded city government. . . never mind what's done in private although all officials earn their salaries on the public dime.
How's it supposed to work?
mebbe something like this:
Where 'a minute-taker' is usually [or sometimes-not] physically present at meetings.
In other words there is a human intervention in the flow of information who writes down notes on the public discussion that somehow produce outcomes accurately while getting passed up the chain-of-command to another person - usually the Mesa City Manager Chris Brady - who provides a document that gets passed to the City Clerk for publication on mesaaz.gov .
For example
Go to this this page City Council Approved Detailed Minutes  where you will find a 7-page document, only available in .PDF format, for the December 5, 2016 meeting.
There is an added subheading with this tidbit
If the document you are searching for is not found below, please email clerk.info@mesaaz.gov with your request.

Go to this this page Calendar/Council, Board & Committee Research Center and you will find only 3 listings of publicly-available Minutes out of 13 meetings on the December 2016 calendar - none from the City Council although meeting and study sessions took place on Dec 1, 8 and 12.


City Observatory Moves Into The Void About "Affordable"

Urban myth busting: New rental housing and median-income households
By Joe Cortright      

Hail To The Chief With Empty Raised Hands! . . . It's NOT His Fault?

ASU president paints bleak picture of Arizona’s economy, future
Compare reality...the data and empirical research...with the fairytales and fantasies the AZ GOP is advancing for political power.
Here's the biggest, pants are on fire, fairytale of all: if we just cut taxes, the economy will expand, we'll all have jobs, and live happily ever after.
Read through the Crow presentation and if you still think the GOP trickle down, voodoo economic model is working for you...or has a chance of success, then I suggest you just place your head between your knees and kiss your ass goodbye.

Pie's End-of-Year Rant. 2016 > Hold On for 9:29 Minutes!

Tim's gone to get pizza
Published on Dec 30, 2016
Views: 18,624
Pie's annual Christmas Party drunken round-up of 2016.

CDMX >> Mexico City Named The World Design Capital For 2018

Earlier this year, Mexico City beat out strong competition from another Latin American destination to be named the Americas’ first World Design Capital. This biannual honour is to be bestowed on the Mexican capital in 2018, and will no doubt draw even greater global attention to the city that the New York Times named 2016’s top traveller destination.
Source: Culturetrip
Article written by Lauren Cocking Updated:

The underlying intention of the World Design Capital initiative, which began back in 2008 and has so far bestowed its eponymous title onto six cities worldwide, is to promote the use of design as an effective tool for social, economic and cultural development. Cities which can effectively demonstrate their ability to use design in such a way, through projects that can be applied in other cities across the world, are elected biannually as the World Design Capital.
The principal reason Mexico City was bestowed with this prestigious honour was due to its use of design in several public spheres such as security, health and communications, with one great example being the newly introduced bike sharing scheme.
Officials involved with the programme also acknowledge that ‘Mexico City has a powerful story to share on the world stage, as a model for other megacities around the world using design to tackle the challenges of urbanization and ensure a more liveable city.’
. . . At the signing ceremony which officially confirmed Mexico City as the World Design Capital in March of this year, the city’s signature colour was unveiled; a deep shade of pink.


It’s no coincidence that just recently official taxis became pink and white and the newly appointed official acronym for the city – CDMX – sprung up everywhere in various hues of magenta; in fact, this deliberate election of pink by the WDC committee for Mexico only reinforces the collaboration between design and social spheres.

Comments Sparked > (Re)Urban Atlas Post on December 27

 Mapping the Value of Neighborhood 'Character'
The Atlas of ReUrbanism begins to explore how older buildings help density and affordability, but it doesn’t go far enough
Your MesaZona strongly encourages readers to look at the entire article that ends with this paragraph : "Unfortunately, the interactive maps don’t let you layer on the number of affordable housing units per block—you’re left to take the analysis of the report, plus city-specific fact sheets that drill into some extra detail, at face value. The report does include an interesting chart that compares character and density (below), which might be interesting to folks who see new construction as the only answer to increasing densities. Rather than look at historic buildings as targets for tear-downs, why not look first at the vacant space within them? Furthermore, the authors write, “how much additional development capacity could be realized if surface parking lots were replaced by housing, office space, and retail?”

.,,from The Cultural Coalition > Happy Holidays! Felizes Fiestas!

Feliz Año Nuevo y Muchas Gracias!

Agenda: Economic Development Advisory Board Meeting Jan 3 2017

Blogger's Note: No Approved Minutes of meetings on Oct 4 and Nov 3 2016 have been published or made available to the public on the official website

Meeting Notice & Agenda
Economic Development Advisory Board
City Council Chambers 57 E. 1st Street, Lower Level
Tuesday, January 3, 2017 7:30 AM
1. Chair’s Call to Order
2. Items from Citizens Present
3. Approval of Minutes from December 6, 2016 meeting 
4. Discussion on Economic Development with Councilmember elect Mark Freeman
5. Downtown Mesa Association
6. Director’s Update
7. Other Business
 Next EDAB Meeting- February 7th   
8. Adjournment

Rogue Columnist Jon Talton Cuts Through The Hype About Phoenix

 Blogger's Note
If you, dear readers, skipped over a featured post on the findings in a Millen Institute report posted on this site earlier, here's an opportunity to read the findings in the context and narrative provided by this Seattle-based reporter
In the doldrums
Jon Tilton December 29, 2016
Back in the 2000s, Phoenix was always at or near the top of the Milken Institute's list of best-performing cities. The local-yokel boosters made much of this. In reality, the metric was based on job growth and Phoenix looked pretty good, powered by the housing boom.
What a difference does the housing crash, Great Recession, and better measurements make. A few years ago, Milken retooled its survey. Now Milken uses a wide variety of yardsticks to present a more accurate and comprehensive look at how metropolitan areas are doing.

In the new 2016 Best Performing Cities, metro Phoenix comes in at 46th.
Going deeper, Phoenix's

  • five-year job growth ranked 40th;
  • five-year wage and salary growth 63rd;
  • short-term growth 76th;
  • five-year high-tech GDP growth 56th (one-year was 110th);
  • high-tech location quotient 56th
  • number of highly concentrated tech industries 63rd.
It's not a pretty picture, especially when we're talking about the sixth-largest city and 13th most populous metropolitan area

At the top were Silicon Valley, Provo-Orem, Utah, Austin, San Francisco and Dallas. Among other Western peers was Seattle No. 10, Denver No. 13, and Portland No. 14. Blue "socialist" California won six of the top 25 spots among major metros. By comparison, Tucson was No. 155. Among small metros, Prescott was No. 33, Flagstaff 81, and Yuma 146. Bend, Ore., led the small metros.
Milken's emphasis on high-tech is important because this has been the sweet spot of the long recovery from the Great Recession. Cities at the headwaters of talent, innovation, and tech headquarters have done very well. For example, the hottest residential real-estate market is not in the Sun Belt but Seattle.
Another area of high performance in today's economy has been the "back to the city" phenomenon, with companies moving to vibrant downtowns to attract talented millennials and others who want a car-free lifestyle and the choices of a dense, lively city. While downtown Phoenix has made more progress, it has largely missed this gravy train. Most economic activity, and most of it low-end, is in the suburbs.
Phoenix continues to play its old game — largely without the Cold War tech industries that helped diversify the economy in the decades after World War II. Add population, build tract houses, put up spec commercial and industrial space, sell sunshine. It's not a path to prosperity or success for such a large metropolitan area. Particularly one sitting at ground zero for climate change. Even the occasional headline about "another" Silicon Valley company setting up shop "in the Valley" reveals a back-office operation seeking cheap, low-skilled workers.
So much for the performance of low-tax, little-regulation Duceynomics.
Even by Phoenix-centered metrics, the bird falls short. In the latest Emerging Trends in Real Estate, another gold-standard survey, the top cities are Austin, Dallas, Portland, Seattle, and Los Angeles. Places with, you know, real economies to support real estate. Phoenix comes in a middling 21st (Tucson 62nd).
The devastation of the housing crash was so severe that it took until 2015 for Phoenix to recover to its pre-recession peak in jobs. But there's a big difference:
Job growth has been much more restrained than in previous expansions. Only about 20,000 worked in construction as of October, compared with a peak of 33,800 in the go-go years of the 2000s.
This is the recovery. All Phoenix got was a lousy T-shirt.

Bird on Fire: Lessons from the World's Least Sustainable City
Book by Andrew Ross
"Phoenix, Arizona is one of America's fastest growing metropolitan regions. It is also its least sustainable one, sprawling over a thousand square miles, with a population of four and a half million, minimal rainfall, scorching heat, and an insatiable appetite for unrestrained growth and unrestricted property rights. In Bird on Fire, eminent social and cultural analyst Andrew Ross focuses on the prospects for sustainability in Phoenix--a city in the bull's eye of global warming--and also the obstacles that stand in the way. Most authors writing on sustainable cities look . . . "
Source: Google books

A somewhat more optimistic POV was online with this cautionary note ending with the usual euphemism 'room for improvement'
Downtown Phoenix, once an afterthought, now a residential hotspot
Artists and astute planning turned a blank slate of empty blocks into a boomtown
"While the development of a true 24-hour downtown gets near universal praise—having literally thousands of new residents downtown is a success story—many caution that the city’s traditional, developer-friendly culture may push out some of the elements that helped start this boom. In and around Roosevelt Row, Esser is seeing some of the pioneers being pushed out due to rising rents, and others point to the need for more middle-income housing amid the new high-end apartment boom. The bigger, long term challenge is getting young people, artists, and others more engaged in the community and cultural ecology of downtown Phoenix. He feels there’s still room for improvement."
Curbed Nov 4, 2016

28 December 2016

Meeting: You Can Attend In-Person or Conference Call > Get Informed

Stakeholder Meeting
Proposed Changes 
to Arizona Emissions Bank
Dear Stakeholder,
ADEQ, in partnership with the Maricopa County Air Quality Department (MCAQD), is contemplating changes to the Arizona Emissions Bank to allow for the recovery of emission reduction credits that are not recognized by current regulations.
ADEQ and MCAQD invite you to attend a meeting regarding these changes, at which we will identify concerns, propose changes, and gather your input. 
Attend the meeting in person or via conference call:
When: Thurs., Jan. 5, 2017, 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.Where: ADEQ, 1110 W. Washington St., Third Floor, Room 3175, Phoenix AZ, 85007
Conference Call:
1-877-820-7829 | Passcode: 228497#
In preparation for the meeting, please review the below materials, which include draft language from MCAQD, an example statute from Texas, and AZ's current statute and regulations.

Hey! Got About 7 Minutes to Listen?

A Talk: Robert Stark interviews Charles Marohn from Strong Towns

Robert Stark and co-host Pilleater talk to Charles Marohn. Charles is a Professional Engineer (PE) licensed in the State of Minnesota and a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP). Chuck is the Founder and President of Strong Towns. He has a Bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Minnesota’s Institute of Technology and a Masters in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Minnesota’s Humphrey Institute.
How Charles’s background in urban planning exposed him to the problems of sprawl development
Charles’s books 
Thoughts on Building Strong Towns, Volume 1 & Volume II
The fiscal unsustainability of sprawl development
Charles’ point that the key factor in urbanism is 
Incremental Development
Charles’s point that cities must be viewed as ecosystems
The “build it they will come” fallacy, and how traditionally massive infrastructure projects were designed to serve existing population centers(ex.Roman Aqueducts)
How pre-automobile cities tend to be the most viable
Nassim Taleb’s 
Antifragile theory, and how it relates to urbanismThe Density Question, Charles point that density should neither be fetishized nor seen as inherently bad, but must take into account incremental development
How cities such as New York and San Francisco have value independent of their economies, while places like the Silicon Valley would become unviable if their industries collapsed
Zoning laws and land use regulations
The movement to 
Retrofit Suburbia, how it’s a step in the right direction, but has it’s limitations
How cities will contract in the future, with people living in both cities and towns, but that it’s the space in between that’s unviable
Micro Apartments
Political divides, and how when it comes to planning issues on a local level, people tend to be more pragmatic than dogmatic
The Public vs. Private sector role in infrastructure, and how Charles’s point that things that are high risk should be in the private sector, and low risk in the public sector(ex. Wall Street baillouts)
The role of the government in historic preservation and protecting the environment
Housing and affordable family formation

 Audio Player
Click Here to download!

How Not To Be Angry all the Time

Published on Dec 28, 2016
Views: 22,000
At the root of some of our angriest moods lies a surprising emotion: optimism. If you like our films, take a look at our shop (we ship worldwide): https://goo.gl/XF9elh
Join our exclusive mailing list: http://bit.ly/2e0TQNJ
Or visit us in person at our London HQ https://goo.gl/kd4Mkg
FURTHER READING “Angry people sound like gloomy types. We certainly don’t usually think of them as optimists – and yet, beneath their gruff surface, they truly are, much to their cost…” You can read more on this and other topics on our blog TheBookofLife.org at this link: https://goo.gl/uLMl60 MORE SCHOOL OF LIFE Our website has classes, articles and products to help you think and grow: https://goo.gl/HuCT1E Watch more films on SELF in our playlist: http://bit.ly/TSOLself Do you speak a different language to English? Did you know you can submit Subtitles on all of our videos on YouTube? For instructions how to do this click here: https://goo.gl/XpwC9a SOCIAL MEDIA Feel free to follow us at the links below: Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/theschoolofl... Twitter: https://twitter.com/TheSchoolOfLife Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/theschoolof... CREDITS Produced in collaboration with: Jocie Juritz http://www.jociejuritz.co.uk/ https://vimeo.com/jociejuritz

Quakes Striking > Pressure + Heat Building In The Planet

Heads up/Be safe
Published on Dec 28, 2016
All Links @ http://www.BPEarthWatch.Com

Keeping You Informed + Interested? Thank You for The Hits

Welcome To: MesaZona: Table of Contents

Where you never know what's gonna get dished out . . . subscribe to the feed

Got a good appetite?

27 December 2016

Here In The New Urban DTMesa: Adaptive Re-Use of An Historic Property

The Alhambra Hotel on the National Register of Historic Places, is in the finishing stages of rehab construction by Kitchell-Pérez/Venue Builders as readers can see in the images from Monday, December 26, 2016 of the front of the building. Students from Benedictine University will be in residence starting sometime next month.
In a recent article  about ReUrbanism: Shaping Communities Through Re-Use, the organization Saving Places makes a strong case to keep what is unique starting off by stating that Adaptive reuse should be the default, and demolition a last resort.
Historic preservation encourages cities to build on the assets they have—unleashing the enormous power and potential of older buildings to improve health, affordability, prosperity, and well-being. Ultimately, it’s the mix of old and new buildings, working together to fashion dense, walkable, and thriving streets, that helps us achieve a more prosperous, sustainable, and healthier future.
By transforming the places we live to places we love, older buildings are a key and irreplaceable component of this future, and we are richer and stronger when they remain.
We all have places that matter to us—places that define us, places that challenge us, places that bring us together and tell our story.
These places help form our identity and our communities. They create opportunities for growth and help us feel at home. They explain our past and serve as the foundation of our future.
These special places - like this building on the west street of the street - arise organically where people choose to come together, and from the local stories they treasure and wish to see persevere.
Current use is for a transitional living center with housing and counseling services on a section of South MacDonald Street just south of Main Street running to First Avenue where two local businesses have been operating for over 60 years.
There's also a sound studio + a shop that makes pool tables.
At one time, the building you see across the alleyway to world famous Nile Theater was once The Mesa Opera House as you can read in a bronze plaque mounted on the inside column at the north corner.
It gives you an idea of what downtown Mesa was like way-back-when.

Fortunately, these older buildings were not torn down . . But when older buildings are destroyed, the engine that keeps neighborhoods growing, innovating, and thriving is disrupted. Fundamental to ReUrbanism is that building reuse encourages economic growth and stimulates vibrant communities. Our Ten Principles for ReUrbanism outline this important work.
New Tool Available The Atlas of ReUrbanism
As the National Trust’s ReUrbanism initiative seeks to support the successful, inclusive, and resilient cities of tomorrow, the Atlas of ReUrbanism is a tool to help urban leaders and advocates better understand and leverage the opportunities that exist in American cities. The Atlas makes the massive amount of data currently available about cities more accessible, allowing for the exploration and discovery of connections between older buildings and economic, demographic, and environmental outcomes. Whether you’re a mayor, planner, developer, activist, or journalist, the Atlas contains useful information about the businesses and residents, buildings and blocks that make cities work for everyone.

The Year of The Bot

2016 was the year of the bot — this is how we got there…
2016 was the year of the bot in journalism.
In this edited extract from the forthcoming second edition of the Online Journalism Handbook, Paul Bradshaw outlines what bots are, how bots have been used by media organisations from early Twitter bots to the recent wave of ‘chatbots’, and some tips and tools for getting started with journalistic bots.
Source: Medium.com
‘Bots’ are ‘robots’ — only on the internet. Without the mechanical body of their physical counterparts, all that leaves is a disembodied computer script, normally created to perform repetitive tasks . . .
In the context of journalism and publishing, the term ‘bot’ is normally used to refer to something which users can interact with. Examples include:
  • A bot which automatically publishes updates on a particular social media account when it receives new information from a feed (such as new articles)
  • A bot which can supply article suggestions in response to a query from a user
  • A bot which attempts to provide answers to questions given by users
The Twitter bots: alerting, aggregating and monitoring
Useful for amplifying, revealing and highlighting
A brief history of chatbots
Why news organisations rushed to build chatbots
Chatbot creation tips and tools
Go to the profile of Paul Bradshaw
Paul Bradshaw

U Can find Mesa Here: SUBURB ATLAS > Searchable OnLine Map with Color-Coded Classifications

RCLCO Suburb Atlas
Welcome to RCLCO’s suburb atlas, a new, interactive visualization of U.S. suburbs.
The atlas classifies the suburbs in the top 50 metropolitan areas in the U.S. based on the key factors that define their housing markets.
RCLCO developed the atlas to complement Housing in the Evolving American Suburb, published by the ULI Terwilliger Center for Housing.
For a summary of the key findings in the report and additional applications of the mapping tool, click here.
You can explore the suburb atlas just like any other online map by scrolling to zoom, clicking and dragging to pan, and using the search bar to find a particular address.
If your search takes you in so close to your site that the colors disappear, just zoom out a little bit to see the color-coded classification.

What's Missing Here in The New Urban DTMesa?

Earth Entering High Energy HelioTail/7.6 Quake

Published on Dec 25, 2016
Views: 94,239
Links @

Walter Cronkite > His Influence On Journalism

Newseum NYC
Filmed on November 21, 2016

25 December 2016

Cultural Diversity Here In Mesa? Is It Only "Lip Service" or Is It Real?

The Mesa City Council is gaining three new members in Districts 1, 2 and 3, while three incumbents in Districts 4, 5 and 6 will hold onto their seats inside City Hall to continue their terms in office for two more years. In a slew of recent press releases from The National League of Cities, all three incumbents were nominated to serve on national committees to form policies and shape ideas that will improve the quality of life for their constituents - one of those is diversity.
Brief excerpts of the announcements and statements of the three new Mesa City Council members are included below after an opportunity to get the City of Mesa recognized for a Cultural Diversity Award from the NLC . . .  let's see if an application is made either by the new members or the three incumbents still in office: Kavanagh, Richins or Finter.

From Wired: The Most Stunning 2016 Images from Outer Space


2 videos
Published on Dec 4, 2016
Views: 247,929
COMET 45P Will PASS Between the Earth and The Sun In January thru Feb.


Published on Dec 24, 2016
Views: 54,489
New Years Comet Brightening as It Approaches Earth

Happy Christmas: Safe & Warm?

Published on Dec 25, 2016
Views: 12,947
Homelessness is a sign that society is broken

Merry Christmas!

 As 2016 draws to a close, I would like to extend my deepest gratitude to the citizens of Arizona for a wonderful year.
The holiday season provides an opportunity for all of us to reflect on those who have made a significant and meaningful impact on our lives.
To family, friends, and fellow Arizonans, I thank you for your tireless efforts and dedication to ensuring Arizona is the greatest state in the nation. It is a privilege and an honor to serve as your governor.
From my family to yours, we wish you a very merry Christmas, a happy Hanukkah, and a peaceful and prosperous new year. 

Yes on YIMBY 2017 >>> Re/Generating The New Urban Downtown Mesa

Dec 25, 2016 @ 03:52 AM 196 views
Yimby Nation: The Rise of America's Pro-Housing Political Coalition
Ahh - another calendar year is soon to close the books yet there are so many stories, unfinished or in-the-works, to be told in one way or another. . . the journalistic beat goes on.
Someone who writes and publishes news/opinion/information may never know what happens "behind-the-scenes", except when someone covers their information with a frequent phrase "You didn't hear this from me", but we do see public actions staged, contrived or spontaneous that are testaments to people getting activated and engaged in social intercourse.
Hold on! Did your MesaZona blogger just write that last word? Not in the carnal sense of the word, but in the civics sense of the word: the theoretical and practical aspects of citizenship, its rights and duties; the duties of citizens to each other as members of a political body and to the government. . . Case in point = Attainable and affordable housing

23 December 2016

Happy Holidays from the Mesa Chamber of Commerce > Not For Minimum-Wage Increase

Copyright © 2014. All Rights Reserved
Business groups including several chambers of commerce are appealing a court ruling regarding the implementation of Arizona's voter-approved minimum wage hike that is set to go into effect on Jan. 1.
The Arizona Republic reports the groups behind a lawsuit that seeks to overturn Proposition 206, which passed in November, have decided to appeal this week's ruling by a Maricopa County judge who refused to halt the implementation, which calls for Arizona's minimum wage to rise to $10 next month


Our Favorite Infographics Of 2016 Are A Crash Course In How The World Works

Here's just one in the accompanying image above where tall  buildings represent the wealthy; short ones represent the poor. What's missing? The middle class
In addition to the problems of income inequality and the shrinking middle class, these 10 infographics—our favorites that we wrote about in 2016—also explain our energy, financial, and shipping systems, the global population boom, our diets, and when your job will be taken by a robot. Couple those with a series of maps that will reframe how you think about geopolitics and you have the start of an understanding of the world we are living in today: interconnected, increasingly automated, and full of vast inequities. Please absorb them well and get ready for 2017.
See all 10 right here

Website: https://www.fastcoexist.com/

QUAKE WATCH >> Large Plasma Cloud Around The Sun

Very Intense
Published on December 22, 2016
Views: 32,792

Mesa Regional Dispatch Center and Emergency Operations Center Dedication

John Pombier on-air
a little nervous with the guys standing behind them.
The entire Mesa City Council and two newly-elected future members.
Three regional mayors and the whole Fire/Medical gang out in force
Published December 22, 2016
Views: 6

Breitbart News: Mesa "Angel Mom" Suspended by Twitter For Hate Speech

When going too far-to-the-extreme into hate about crimes committed by illegal aliens and the impact of sanctuary city policies on America...

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