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Archive for Monday, August 6, 2007

Lawrence subdivisions run deep

August 6, 2007

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There is an imaginary line - I'm not quite sure where - that divides Lawrence into two distinct zones: East and West. I felt it immediately upon arriving. Everyone knows it. But where the line between East and West sits depends on where you live. Some say it's Iowa. Others say it's Kasold. Some will even insist it's Wakarusa.

I naturally thought it was Iowa because when I was here last, I lived in the next-to-the-last room on the first floor of McCollum Hall in the wing that practically butts up against Iowa Street. I hated that dorm and am dismayed that it still dominates the skyline of Lawrence. It was, I think, the first coed dorm in the state of Kansas, and college women actually went down to breakfast in hair rollers, pajamas and slippers, oblivious to the fact that college "men" were sitting there laughing at them. Other than that, I don't remember much about the dorm except that I didn't like living on the very edge of the known world. I remember seeing pasture on the other side of Iowa Street.

That has changed.

The divide I immediately sensed goes far deeper than old vs. new. My first impressions (by no means authoritative): On the East side, which includes Old West Lawrence, people live in grand old restored Victorians and cute miniature Victorians and rundown shacks, displaying an amazing array of colors - purple, neon green, you name it. Their basements smell musty. They walk downtown. They wear sensible shoes and outrageous fashions. They volunteer for everything. They recycle. They buy local, which includes shunning Starbucks. They absolutely love Lawrence. They don't seem bothered about weeds growing in the front yard or junk on the back porch. They drive small cars or old pickups. They shop at the Merc - if they can afford it - and Checkers if they can't. They frequent intense places like Local Burger. They sleep on futons. They have lots of kids who are busy in lots of activities. They read books from the library. They ride bicycles, they sit on porches, they love to eat in little, weird, cheap restaurants. They love Zen Zero. Many are vegetarians. All of them eat a lot of nuts. And occasionally they sneak out to big boxes on Iowa to buy really cheap stuff and hope no neighbor catches them.

In West Lawrence, the homes are large and new - usually taupe with roofs the color of bark - surrounded by well-tended green lawns. Many of the houses are arranged neatly around cul-de-sacs or curving streets. The basements smell good. Architecturally, the houses often amount to a huge two- or three-car garage facing the street, with a little bitty seldom-used front door to the side like an afterthought. SUVs and minivans are abundant. They are not ashamed to drink a Starbucks, usually at a handy kiosk at the supermarket. They love to eat in expensive restaurants downtown, and also Zen Zero. They volunteer for everything. They bid at the art auction. They have master bedrooms the size of a student apartment. They absolutely love Lawrence. They shop at the Merc - sometimes. They wear outrageous shoes and sensible fashion. They read best-sellers. They have lots of kids who are busy in lots of activities. They recycle. They shop without feeling guilty at the big boxes on Iowa, which - get this - technically sit on the east side of the dividing line.

I was invited to a party in East Lawrence a few days after arriving in town. When you're new in town, best to keep your mouth shut and learn stuff. So I listened to a lot of talk about this amazing person named Elna. Clearly, everybody loved Elna. I finally asked who Elna was and learned she was not some wise, elderly beloved neighborhood woman but an acronym standing for the East Lawrence Neighborhood Association. Talk turned to schools and city politics. Someone mentioned the term "West Lawrence." The remark seemed innocuous enough, though perhaps the person rolled her eyes when she said it - I wasn't looking up at the time, too busy eating lentil bean salad. But like a thunderclap from across the room came a voice: "I don't want to hear any of this talk about West Lawrence. You know, we compost in West Lawrence."

I didn't know what composting had to do with anything. We were talking about schools, but clearly, the woman across the room had her nettles up. She was going to nip something or other in the bud. The conversation drifted in and around safe territory, but I had witnessed the battle lines. And as I listened and tried to figure out which partygoers were on what side of the great divide, I suddenly realized it was quite clear. All the West Siders had chosen to sit on the west side of the host's living room, and all the East Siders were sitting along the windows on the east side of the living room.

A few days later, while waiting for an appointment at a business office, I accidentally heard one side of a phone conversation from an office down the hall. Someone was apparently trying to cancel his membership in a country club or some other such organization, and the person on the other end of the line was trying to find out why. I heard the caller say, "No, it's not the facilities, it's the membership." When further pressed, he finally said, "Well, I don't know how to put it. It's become too Johnson County." Now I know Johnson County is east of Lawrence, yet I got the impression I'd just heard a dig at something west.

I have avoided the whole messy thing by living out in the country. I can freely graze on both sides of the fence, and that's how I'm going to keep it.

- Elizabeth Black is a writer living in Lawrence. A southwest Kansas native who attended Kansas University, she recently returned to Lawrence after living in Chicago and then on the East Coast for more than 30 years.

Comments

max1 6 years, 8 months ago

"Just walk downtown on a sunny afternoon - you will be accosted several times by people asking for money, or shouting at invisible enemies, or blowing smoke at you as you walk into a restaurant, or generally not giving a crap about keeping this a nice, peaceful town. It's sad, but that's the truth of major growth in a once small town." -ModSquadGal

The often parroted stories of being accosted downtown are obviously overblown. I'm beginning to question whether the authors of those accounts even go downtown. Maybe I am the exception, but in all the years I've lived here I have never experienced any of the complaints you cited, and I practically live downtown. Hopefully, the future Baur Farm development out west will provide better pickin's for panhandlers. The humps who would live there would most likely have more resources than the students that dominate this area.

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George_Braziller 6 years, 8 months ago

ModSquadGal - For my purposes of defining "east siders" and "west siders" I'm talking about east of Massachusetts. With that said, the reason that there may be what you view as "snobbery" is that after you have for decades referred to as trash, stupid, unemployed, and lazy, you eventually get a bit defensive. Who wouldn't? Do you think that the Arts Center, Border's, Hobbs Taylor Lofts, the Judicial Center, or dirty Dillon's on Mass would have ever been allowed on the edge of Old West Lawrence or butting up against Alvamar literally 50 feet from houses? Don't think so. The east side has its own social culture and a very strong identity. When we try to protect our neighborhoods and way of life we are reviled as idiots. When we see our streets and infrastructure collapsing because all the funds are going west we are ignored, you can bet we are going to fight. Many of us have been here for 20, 40, and 60+ years -- this is our life, not a temporary place to lay our head at night.

ModSquadGal (Anonymous) says:

The interesting thing I've noticed is that most of the real "snobbery" is from the East siders. Most of the people I know on the West side are completely oblivious to this "rivalry." I was honestly floored when a good friend of mine moved to the "West Side" from the "East Side" and actually lost friends because of it. Unbelievable.

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hilly 6 years, 8 months ago

4th_grade_education-

mommaeffort is correct, that I meant more National Merit Scholars went to Central during their junior high careers then any other junior high. I don't feel as if my statement was difficult to understand. Other people got it just fine, thanks.

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ModSquadGal 6 years, 8 months ago

The interesting thing I've noticed is that most of the real "snobbery" is from the East siders. Most of the people I know on the West side are completely oblivious to this "rivalry." I was honestly floored when a good friend of mine moved to the "West Side" from the "East Side" and actually lost friends because of it. Unbelievable.

There will always be different factions within a city. Lawrence used to be a pretty cohesive, bohemian, liberal type of town, but growth and the times have changed it. Just walk downtown on a sunny afternoon -- you will be accosted several times by people asking for money, or shouting at invisible enemies, or blowing smoke at you as you walk into a restaurant, or generally not giving a crap about keeping this a nice, peaceful town. It's sad, but that's the truth of major growth in a once small town.

Now the trick is to try and find a way to keep it as pleasant and safe as possible without sending a signal to every vagrant in the world that Lawrence is the perfect place to come get a hand-out or commit a crime! (Yes, I know - these are generalizations, but isn't that what we're really talking about?)

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mistygreen 6 years, 8 months ago

Actually, in most cities high school is considered grades 9 through 12.

My daughter attended Central and it was a terrific experience for her. She was able to travel to foreign counties as well as many other wonderful educational experiences. There was the typical trouble students, and she befriended some. Did that make her a deliquent? No, she was very confient in who she was and used that to help others. It was because of the positive influences at Central that helped her become a responsible young adult. I know many can say that good parenting helps, but I know several good parents, and they raise their child in the best way they can, but we cannot choose the direction our children take.

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Emily Hadley 6 years, 8 months ago

"According to this (tongue-in-cheek?) column, everyone eats at Zen Zero and we all like to recycle. Sounds like that's the common ground to start from."

I'm down!

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Christine Pennewell Davis 6 years, 8 months ago

Well fourth grade I would take it to mean that more graduates on the national merit list went to central than other JRH schools.

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tryingmybest 6 years, 8 months ago

East Lawrence seems to be able to hold an increible diversity of people. There are artists and hippies, students and families, engineers and mathemeticians, social activitists and quiet introverts.

With the new Delaware Street Commons homes, there is even more possiblitiy for diversity. People who want new homes, but not with the outrageous costs of OWL should check it out. Everywhere in East Lawrence is within walking distance to downtown, the hub of the bus system, the library, beautiful parks, and a fabulous farmer's market (which is not only on Sat, but also Tues and Thurs.). People who want to truly live lighter on the earth can do that in East Lawrence.

And, by the way, Delaware Commons homes have at least two porches a piece and some of them have three.

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Wilbur_Nether 6 years, 8 months ago

Bubbles wrote "The only people I hear complaining are from East Lawrence."

Which indicates to me that Bubbles isn't listening hard enough.

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Bubbles 6 years, 8 months ago

The only people I hear complaining are from East Lawrence.

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Cindy Wallace 6 years, 8 months ago

....and then there is North Lawrence....? Gosh....as if it does not exist.

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George_Braziller 6 years, 8 months ago

Dazie (Aileen Dingus) and Sigmund (Anonymous) I don't know if it is available on line. I bought the book and Raven Bookstore four or five years ago.

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4th_grade_education 6 years, 8 months ago

"And, Central even has graduated more National Merit Scholars then any other Junior High school."

So what you are saying is that Central has more flunkees than any other junior high school? That's the only way this makes any sense. You have to be a senior in high school to be considered for national merit. The credit goes to the high school, not the junior high.

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hilly 6 years, 8 months ago

I went to Central and loved it. It always irritated the crap outta me when people referred to it as the ghetto school or anything of that nature. Yes, there are more lower income students at Central then at any other junior high, but that doesn't mean it's any less of a school. I would personally want my child to be in a diverse environment versus any other school that really, in my mind, only offer a new building (which would be great if the school board could figure out something to allow the track team to actually have a track. I know they've changed it recently to actually allow the football field to be full length, but it's still not a full track, which is short changing the students. When I went there, all we had was like a closed down 110m strip of street). On top of that, Central has no more violent incidences recorded by the school district then any other school. And, Central even has graduated more National Merit Scholars then any other Junior High school. My experience there was with teachers that loved their craft and would do anything for their students. I remember what always really hurt me when I was in school there was hearing people from other schools refer to as ghetto, or poor, or other things along those lines. The fact is, there is no real "ghetto" in Lawrence. Lawrence is a great place to live, regardless of which school district you're in, what side of Mass St you live on, or what coffee shop you frequent.

I loved Central. And I'm sure all the other Junior Highs are great. But I personally will always prefer the Mustangs.

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max1 6 years, 8 months ago

"leftist political power will most surely be removed as the growing community overpowers those enclaves in the 'old town'." -75x55

It is high time for Lawrence to split into two separate governmental entities. I suggest the line between old town and west Lawrence should be drawn on a north-south line just west of west campus. Let west Lawrence foot the bill for their expanded residential developments and crematorium complexes. Lawrence never did achieve the "boom" in population that was predicted . Despite what the census bureau keeps telling us, there are some people in west Lawrence who still believe our population is surging ahead. By splitting the town into east-west components, the west Lawrencians will have nobody but themselves to blame for their own failures, and they will no longer be able to squawk their old "it's those antigrowth hippies" line. I also suggest putting toll booths along the divided city line.

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Godot 6 years, 8 months ago

Well, since Coneflower has that for-sale sign in her front yard, she will soon not have to worry about what us 30 year transplants who live and work within the confines of the city, those of us who have planted deep roots in Lawrence, think about the city's future.

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Sigmund 6 years, 8 months ago

I too would like to see a link to those articles. The only thing I could find was one on one of those internet online book store for "Buffalo Spirits" (Paperback) by Elizabeth Black, which did not offer a sampling of the work, but did have a synopsis and three reviews. Sounds like it was a "fictionalized self-portrait", whatever that is.

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Aileen Dingus 6 years, 8 months ago

George_Braziller- where can I find those articles?

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George_Braziller 6 years, 8 months ago

Whether you have lived here for six months or sixty years you should all read "Embattled Lawrence: Conflict and Community." A series of essays and articles that really get to the base it all.

The "East versus West" and "Town versus Gown" issues aren't anything new ---- the've been going on for well over one hundred years.

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coneflower 6 years, 8 months ago

The battle lines and stereotypes aren't as clear-cut as Ms. Black suggests. They never are.

I suggest the big divider in Lawrence now is between people who care about the town and people who care more about their own little microcosm within it. It's true: a great number of people just don't give any thought to what happens to a town or how a change might affect people other than themselves.

Transplants and commuters often fall in the latter category. They have no permanent stake here; they're just using Lawrence as a stepping stone. And like all stereotypes, this one has exceptions.

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George_Braziller 6 years, 8 months ago

The comment was by lawrencechick and not Ms. Black.

"lawrencechick (Anonymous) says:

Ironically, I drove the subdivisions near Free State High School the other day and though:"Toto, I'm not in Lawrence anymore." White flight?

Well, there's an example of racial sterotyping. Why do you assume only white people can afford to live in West Lawrence? Are they the only race that can have a decent job and new house? In East Lawrence you either have to live in a run down house surrounded by college parties and homeless men, or have the big $$$ to renovate an OWL mansion just so you can pretend you are ultra-enlightened."

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Mr_Ramirez 6 years, 8 months ago

Another fascinating article by ms.black........


LOL!!! nice. "In East Lawrence you either have to live in a run down house surrounded by college parties and homeless men, or have the big $$$ to renovate an OWL mansion just so you can pretend you are ultra-enlightened."

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motomom 6 years, 8 months ago

adriennerm--my daughter went to central and LOVED it. awesome parents, teachers who care and ted juneau was a wonderful principal. the kids were terrific, the school auditorium is THEE best in the city. my son goes to south now because we moved. we like it, too. it has a whole different feeling than central does. i have found that in every junior high there are "bad kids", but there are also the good ones, too. please don't let your "gasping" relatives change your mind. instead , invite them to a school play or musical event at central....hopefully, they will see it is not what they assume it to be. good luck and go mustangs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Wilbur_Nether 6 years, 8 months ago

Godot noticed that "Elizabeth left Indian Hills and Prairie Park out of her generalization about housing styles east Iowa."

Most likely because they are "outliers" not fitting the generalizations.

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dlkrm 6 years, 8 months ago

Those of you opining about the fact that your roads in East Lawrence or Old West Lawrence don't get repaired just need to wait a few years. The fact is, my southwest Lawrence neighborhood isn't old enough to need street repairs yet. But I'm not naive enough to believe that when they do need repairs that the city will be able to find the money to fix them! Come on, everyone, wake up!

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Godot 6 years, 8 months ago

Elizabeth left Indian Hills and Prairie Park out of her generalization about housing styles east Iowa.

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Kookamooka 6 years, 8 months ago

We live in Central Lawrence. Right smack dab in the middle. 30% of the kids at our neighborhood school "turn over" every year. Maybe we're in a "starter" family neighborhood. Maybe their parents "move up" to West Lawrence. We like being centrally located and I don't feel stereotyped. Our houses aren't new, they aren't charming but they can fit a family of five. The kids walk to school. Nobody has much of an opinion of us one way or the other and I like it like that. Central Lawrence is the way to go. Avoid the East/West dichotomy completely.

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Christine Pennewell Davis 6 years, 8 months ago

East, west, north, south, it is not the location but the people and to all those that think, west or southwest are safer schools should check out the police calls and reports to those schools. Central is not that bad, it has it's problems but so does every other school in this town. East lawrence has some bad people that live there but so does the west side of town, like I said it is not the location but the people.

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storm 6 years, 8 months ago

West Lawrence = west of Wakarusa, mostly JoCos and Californians, now NIMBY's (not-in-my-backyard) about the WalMart.
East Lawrence = everyone else.
Hutton Gulch (Farms?) = eyesore at Peterson & Kasold, looks like a mining town where everyone will perish when one of the cribs catch fire.

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Tony Kisner 6 years, 8 months ago

Ave - I agree with your comment. Makes me kind of sad.

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adriennerm 6 years, 8 months ago

I moved here July 2006. Before that I would visit my family summers, holidays,,,etc.and I was born here. When I moved here I needed a place to stay asap and I wasn't employeed. Therefore I needed a landlord that would take a risk. I moved into a lovely apartment complex near 15th and Haskell. Never ever had a problem.

However I have a school aged child. My child goes to a school on 6th street b/c my father lives over there. He watches her afterschool and it made since to enroll her there. The parents asked me why do I live in that part of town. Do I feel safe over here.

I don't see a problem, but other Lawrence residents do. Then when I said my daughter will be going to Central, they gasped. Some family members are begging me to enroll her in West or Southwest. I think it's more of sterotyping people. Since I live in East Lawrence, I must be poor and a criminal. To go futher, my daughter had a New Years Eve sleep-over. Some friends couldn't come b/c we stayed "too far."

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jrlii 6 years, 8 months ago

When my family moved to Lawrence in 1963, somebody told my dad "never buy a house in East Lawrence."

Of course, back then East Lawrence meant east of Massachusetts St.

I still think of East Lawrence as east of Mass. By ELNA's definition it also means west of Haskell, south of the river and north of 15th St, if I remember correctly.

To me West Lawrence is from Mass. to about Kasold. West of Kasold it becomes "Far West Lawrence" or just "The land of big ugly houses."

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kmat 6 years, 8 months ago

What the East/West thing comes down to is how the city treats the two sides of town. If you live anywhere other than the newer, western communities, you understand. They don't take care of the roads or any infrastructure in the "older" areas of town. Only those is "West Lawrence" get their roads repaired, good curbs, etc.... I live in N. Lawrence, in a newer home on a very nice block. When I contacted the city manager a few years ago about an issue I had, the city manager admitted that the city wouldn't focus on an issue in N. Lawrence because they honestly didn't care about the infrastructure there. I must say I was shocked that he had the b*lls to admit what I had thought was the case.

So, this isn't about race, isn't about style of life. It's about money. The people in W. Lawrence, in general, have more money (or at least appear to by going into debt to buy those large, new houses) and the city wants to keep them happy. They'll let those of us in the older parts of town get the left overs, after they've made sure that the "uppity" neighborhoods are kept in good shape.

I've lived in all areas of this town and have seen it first hand. Live near Kasold, the streets get fixed, the snow gets plowed. Move away from that area and you see that you will be the last on the list to get these services. But yet, we all pay taxes!!!

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justtemp 6 years, 8 months ago

I meant to say -- I'm just tired of hearing 'East vs. West.'

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George_Braziller 6 years, 8 months ago

Lawrencechick you're doing your own stereotyping with your statement that: "In East Lawrence you either have to live in a run down house surrounded by college parties and homeless men, or have the big $$$ to renovate an OWL mansion just so you can pretend you are ultra-enlightened." It isn't true for me or my neighborhood.

lawrencechick (Anonymous) says:

Ironically, I drove the subdivisions near Free State High School the other day and though:"Toto, I'm not in Lawrence anymore." White flight?

Well, there's an example of racial sterotyping. Why do you assume only white people can afford to live in West Lawrence? Are they the only race that can have a decent job and new house? In East Lawrence you either have to live in a run down house surrounded by college parties and homeless men, or have the big $$$ to renovate an OWL mansion just so you can pretend you are ultra-enlightened.

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justtemp 6 years, 8 months ago

I live in a neighborhood just southwest of Kasold & Clinton Parkway. It was built in the 70's and 80's, from the look and condition of the housing. Much of the neighborhood is rental property, and many folks here cannot even consider buying a house in Lawrence thanks to the cost.

Does that fit the stereotype of West Lawrence?

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hilary 6 years, 8 months ago

I've lived on both sides, mainly the East, since I was born, 27 years ago. I must say I have my preferences, and of course, we cannot make huge, sweeping generalizations of either side. However, ELNA does have the BEST party annually. Also, I could never live in a house without a front porch. Why can't these new builders incorporate a porch?

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Sigmund 6 years, 8 months ago

In terms of energy efficiency, safety, and being free of mold, I would put the houses in West Lawrence up against the "quaintness" of East Lawrence any day!

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pace 6 years, 8 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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Pywacket 6 years, 8 months ago

Elizabeth is certainly right about the nature of the typical subdivision house--ugly, characterless blocks dominated by jutting garages. She's kinder than I am by calling the color "taupe." IMO, most of these boxes are painted from the rigid (often controlled by homeowner's associations) Baby$h Palette: babysh green, babysh yellow, babysh tan, or some murky mix thereof.

I'm glad she does not fall into the usual trap of stereotyping all the residents of those boxes, though. I've lived in west (west of Iowa) Lawrence and am here to tell you that good incomes and residence in a subdivision does not automatically mean that people are soulless, money-grubbing drones. The folks I met and enjoyed as neighbors in that area were every bit as appreciative of the arts (both viewing and creating), the earth (recycling but also longing to travel and experience as much of it as possible), and the value of education as anybody on the east side. They had just as much curiosity, passion, humor and zest for life as anybody in a drooping but colorful Victorian cottage on Louisiana or New Jersey could have.

And most I knew seemed to view their boxy houses as temporary--a place that, yes, had no character, but was energy efficient and reliable (i.e., not plagued by ancient plumbing, electric, heating & air, etc), and would take care of itself while they saved for their dream home--which, more often than not, was visualized as a new or restored Victorian, Arts & Crafts, or 50s modern on a little bit of acreage.

I've never been comfortable with the stereotypes that are hurled at either end of the spectrum. Kudos to Elizabeth for offering a fairly balanced look.

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75x55 6 years, 8 months ago

I don't believe this east/west line business exists (anymore, at least). The easiest way to see the real dividing "zones" is to hunt back to the latest election results here on the LJW website, and use the 'results by precinct' feature.

It will also show what may be the real reason for so much 'anti-growth' sentiment by some in town, as leftist political power will most surely be removed as the growing community overpowers those enclaves in the 'old town'.

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lawrencechick 6 years, 8 months ago

Ironically, I drove the subdivisions near Free State High School the other day and though:"Toto, I'm not in Lawrence anymore." White flight?

Well, there's an example of racial sterotyping. Why do you assume only white people can afford to live in West Lawrence? Are they the only race that can have a decent job and new house? In East Lawrence you either have to live in a run down house surrounded by college parties and homeless men, or have the big $$$ to renovate an OWL mansion just so you can pretend you are ultra-enlightened.

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Kookamooka 6 years, 8 months ago

All I can say is...at least Lawrence is a city that encompasses both West and East. In Johnson County you have school districts that cross many city lines. Desoto, for example, is a conglomeration of Lenexa, Olathe, DeSoto and Shawnee. They live amidst strip malls, industrial parks and big box retailers. It's just one gargantuan subdivision after the next and they all look alike. There is little, if any, diversity. It just looks like more "white flight".

Ironically, I drove the subdivisions near Free State High School the other day and though..."Toto, I'm not in Lawrence anymore." White flight?

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Ken Miller 6 years, 8 months ago

According to this (tongue-in-cheek?) column, everyone eats at Zen Zero and we all like to recycle. Sounds like that's the common ground to start from.

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Sigmund 6 years, 8 months ago

Ms. Black needed 8 paragraphs and 973 words to tell us she is just now discovering that "tolerance, acceptance and diversity" for ELAN's stops at Iowa? She must be use to being paid by the word.

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average 6 years, 8 months ago

There is a certain frustration in 'old' Lawrence. I live on a quite modest block. But, it's not like we don't pay taxes. The average house is over $100k, and the property tax rates are relatively high. We pay more taxes than all but the very richest people in 103 Kansas counties. Yet our roads are awful - curbless, gutterless, sidewalk-less, and cratered. Snow removal is behind much of town, emergency response is slow, enforcement against crack houses is a low priority. Our neighborhood school was closed and the schools in the area are struggling. The money is going somewhere.

We build up a mythos (not entirely untrue) about how cool and unique our neighborhoods are and how much we love the old Lawrence. We do that because we know that for housing, services, and probably jobs, it would be better elsewhere.

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Richard Heckler 6 years, 8 months ago

Perhaps it is more about too many westside commissioners running our fair city and not receiving equal representation for realizing one core business district is all any small town needs. There seems to be acceptance of economic displacement instead of economic growth from those westside thinkers as well as the idea that all new development is good.... in spite of being advised by experts that were paid to visit Lawrence for a week that Lawrence is over saturated in retail and residential.

AND it seems the powers that be,some elected and some back door types, have no respect for maintaining historical downtown. Notice how the eastside infrastructure has been ignored while over building west Lawrence?

BUt other than that I do know some fine folks on the westside and have met some fine folks from JOCO as well as from everywhere else in world while living in Lawrence. So wouid the city please complete the eastside hike and bike trail that would connect with the westside hike and bike trails so us eastsiders can convene with our withside brothers and sisters.

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lounger 6 years, 8 months ago

Alot of people call west lawrence an extention of johnson county. Might as well be sometimes but its hard to make statements like that and have it relate to every one out west. Still east lawrence is more diverse (as far as race and eccentric people go) and its hard to deny that!

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