Friday, March 20, 2009

Two Towns in One - Part 1

A while back there was a column in the Buffalo News about Long Street in Clarence Center. It contained this observation:
"Long Street is not what many consider a “typical” Clarence neighborhood, not that there is such a thing, anyway. The houses are older, not very large, and are close to the street, which barely accommodates two cars heading in opposite directions."
Actually that description is exactly what I think of when referring to Clarence, not the Beverly Hills 14032 et al version that many seem to conjure up, even among some of those that live there. If one were to concentrate on getting from here to there without detouring through any of the many subdivisions, the traditional part of town is pretty much all one sees, with an occasional bigger house (that desperately needs fast growing trees) appearing by the side of the road.

Therein also lies a split within the town, with each barely aware of the other in real time. Those who think everyone in town is upper middle class or wealthy most likely just zip down the main roads without a much of a thought towards those who live in the "little houses", while those of more modest means rarely meander through all those rapidly spouting enclaves that house those with different expectations.

Meanwhile the elected officials must try to the best of their ability to represent all the townspeople. Some seem to cover their eyes and hope for the best, others try to reach out to all, and still others alienate with little effort.

More on another day...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I think your observations are spot on. The three traditional neighborhoods of Clarence have never had anything in common with the McMansions of Spauling Lake and its equivalents. Whenever we have a problem that gets regional attention, we have to tell the Buffalo media that we are not the idle rich of Clarence they expect.