It's Austin, Texas. Population much the same as Auckland. Not one of the 25 cities that Greg Clark listed in his recent Auckland Conversations talk about making Auckland "more business friendly...."
Austin's current official slogan promotes Austin as "The Live Music Capital of the World", a reference to the many musicians and live music venues within the area.... In recent years, some Austinites have also adopted the unofficial slogan "Keep Austin Weird". This interpretation of the classic, "Texas-style" sense of independence refers to: the traditional and proudly eclectic, liberal lifestyles of many Austin residents; a desire to protect small, unique, local businesses from being overrun by large corporations; and as a reaction to the perceived rise of conservative influences within the community. In the late 1800s, Austin also became known as the City of the "Violet Crown" for the wintertime violet glow of color across the hills just after sunset. Even today, many Austin businesses use the term "violet crown" in their name. Austin is known as a "clean air city" for the city's stringent no-smoking ordinances that apply to all public places and buildings, including restaurants and bars.
I wrote here about the recent Lorde concert at Silo Park, and quoted from the last part of Greg Clark's talk, which you won't find in his slide presentation. In that post I quoted Greg Clark along these lines:
He told us that Auckland rated high for quality of life, outstanding natural environment, highly effective governance institutions. BUT that Auckland has "patchy global appeal", ranks weak in "presence" and is weak in "liveliness". In fact he used the word "anonymous" to describe Auckland. He advised that Auckland needed to find its DNA, to expose its soul, to discover its inbuilt pattern, and work with that - not against it.....Greg Clark went on to advise that part of Auckland's DNA was its maori and polynesian culture. What are we doing about making Maori culture centre-stage in Auckland? There's been some talk, and we're certainly big on vision statements, but I wonder whether the words: "World Class" and "Most Liveable City" (most liveable for who? - as I asked in this posting), are running counter to Auckland's DNA?
end of Queens Wharf. A plan whose lack of consultation was appropriately criticised by Rudman last week.
As I understand it, the sculpture proposed was to look like a state house - but scaled down a bit in size - with a large chandelier hanging within. I read somewhere that the idea was an image about "keeping the home fires burning". This could have been about the number of servicemen who left for the war by ship from Queens Wharf, and it could be about the number of immigrants and settlers who came into Auckland by ship, and set foot in New Zealand on or around Queens Wharf.
I wonder whether live music - which is a very big part of polynesian culture - you only have to look at NZ's Got Talent to see that - might be a way of livening up Auckland ("lively up yourself"). We can still be the City of Sails, but adding another cultural layer would be interesting.
they say about Austin's live music scene.... "First-time visitors might be surprised to find themselves being entertained with live music as they walk through the terminal at Austin's airport after deplaning. But they shouldn't be. Live music, and music in many other forms, is everywhere in Austin. Musicians play in everything from grocery stores (Central Market, Whole Foods) to city council meetings. They play outdoors at the Blues on the Green series and at festivals: Austin City Limits and South by Southwest you've likely heard of, but there's also Pachanga Latino Musical Festival, Urban Music Festival, Fun, Fun, Fun Fest, Chaos in Tejas and many more worth checking out. Mostly, you'll find Austin musicians at clubs, coffeehouses, bars, taquerias, auditoriums and concert halls - and with more than 250 live music venues, it can be intimidating knowing where to start.....
250 live music venues. City the size of Auckland. Interesting....