Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Erie Canal Regionalism

Thanks to NYCO's Blog for picking up on my half-baked idea about Western New York going all in on Buffalo. Reading the comments, I'd say my suggestion is a dud. But I blog in hopes of engaging other blogs I value and the response of NYCO's readership is instructive.

The negative reactions range from antipathy for Buffalo to alternative suggestions, including a larger mega-regional geography known as Atlantica. Overall, the consensus would seem to be that Buffalo's time was in the past and some other city might better lift up the economic corridor. I am encouraged that this region seems to be coherent enough to support the requisite connectivity.

The main reason I advocate for Buffalo as the anchor is its relationship to other economic corridors. As I've blogged about in the past, Buffalo has its own diaspora that rivals that of Pittsburgh, thus allowing it to claim a similar brain drain asset. There are advantages from suffering a dramatic fall from economic grace. My own blogging adventure reveals only approximately one half-dozen cities capable of cultivating a successful diaspora network, Buffalo being one of them. Buffalo's parochialism is impressive and travels well. Western New York would be wise to employ it.

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