Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Rename Cincinnati's Newest "Neighborhood"

Hopping onto "The Banks" renaming-bandwagon, I just thought I'd move this little tidbit along to those of you haven't heard (source: The Banks Blog & Business Courier):

I like that they've already narrowed it down to four options, on top of the fact they're hinting that the associations with the current name reside in the mud. Here are the four choices:

Parkside • Riverfront District • Park District • The Banks

My selection: It was a good idea to leave the current name in there, because along with being the current crowd favorite, it also saves on rebranding everything. Parkside and Park District sound too Buckhead-ish to me, and honestly, any neighborhood with the word "park" in it should reside near one of the city's storied parks (i.e. Eden). Our city's park system has a rich history, and the most notable ones lie inland - I just can't make the connection with riverfront. Thus, I picked Riverfront District. It's not flashy, and doesn't have that staccato ring to it like The Banks, but it does remind me of the Riverfront Stadium glory days, while being helpfully obvious to out-of-towners, newbloods, and the like. I do like the The Banks, and honestly, I wouldn't mind if they kept it, but a new name with the new steel going in makes a lot of sense.

The current results of the poll are here.

• NOTE: I'm not digging Sawyer Point or Friendship Park by any means, nor the planned Riverfront Park, because I think they're all great & necessary additions to downtown, but they didn't build the city's rich heritage, they've only followed in their footsteps. Personally, I've supported and followed almost all of the city parks, and encourage their continual beautification and growth, but as far as the renaming of the new district on the river is concerned, I associate "banks" and "riverfront" with it much more than "park". Read about the Cincinnati Parks history here.

Update (3/6/9): A funny writeup over at The Banks Blog on rejected name suggestions, and many other discussions on this topic floating around, like at Quim's and Pepper's blog.


Randy Simes said...

I voted for Park District, but Riverfront District would probably be my choice if I changed my vote. I agree with your points.

VisuaLingual said...

I totally agree with your reasoning. All this place making business is of great interest to me, but stuff like this always makes me smirk -- e.g. Park District could be anywhere, and this is certainly not the place for it in Cincinnati. Riverfront District isn't even really a name; it simply is what it is [or will be], but its obviousness is an advantage as well.

Matt said...

Yeah, there's obviously no wrong answer here - it's completely subjective. If any of the four are selected, it really wouldn't be a big deal to me.

I agree, Maya, that "Riverfront District" doesn't even really sound like a brand, but a location. And noting the size of the city, maybe using an overt tag like that isn't even necessary.

Anyway, all of this is just for fun (imo), but since it's obvious that a majority of Cincinnatians have strong opinions on all aspects of the city, I do appreciate the developers giving us a say in the matter - makes the whole process a little more personal.

Randy Simes said...

I tend to think that no matter what it is renamed, people will still refer to it as "The Banks." This has been its name for over a decade and I don't think you're going to change habits all that quickly.

Matt said...

I completely agree, Randy. I think they're just testing the waters to see if people have developed negative connotations with it (the name and the project in general).