The first initiative is a pilot program that will help entrepreneurs who want to renovate old buildings in Downtown Spokane. The city will foot the bill, up to $40,000 to upgrade the water and sewer lines into the building. "We hope it will help small businesses like restaurants that want to go into spaces downtown, but go oh my gosh we have to upgrade these old pipes," Waldref said, "So we may not do it in downtown, they'll go somewhere else and do it." The second initiative applies to the entire city of Spokane. People who want to renovate an old building and put apartments on the upper floors will no longer have to pay the residential sewer rate. Building owners would pay the much lower commercial rate. Waldref says it's much cheaper for the city to build within than to keep expanding outward. "It's a lot cheaper to deliver service to a building in downtown Spokane than it is on the outskirts of town. We already have the infrastructure there, we're already pumping water to that area."Amen and bravo. Infill is vastly more efficient than expanding the boundaries, especially when infill uses existing structures as well as existing land.
Polistra was named after the original townsite of Manhattan (the one in Kansas). When I was growing up in Manhattan, I spent a lot of time exploring by foot, bike, and car. I discovered the ruins of an old mill along Wildcat Creek, and decided (inaccurately) that it was the remains of the original site of Polistra. Accurate or not, I've always liked the name, with its echoes of Poland (an under-appreciated friend of freedom) and stars. ==== The title icon is explained here. ==== Switchover: This 2007 entry marks a sharp change in worldview from neocon to pure populist. ===== The long illustrated story of Polistra's Dream is a time-travel fable, attempting to answer the dangerous revision of New Deal history propagated by Amity Shlaes. The Dream has 8 episodes, linked in a chain from the first. This entry explains the Shlaes connection.