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Revitalizing Downtown?

Sad to see this article (thanks to Messiah College colleague, and fellow class of ’96 alum for the heads up) about the revitalization process in downtown Harrisburg. Apparently, what started as an appeal to the working crowd, couples, and families, has now become a late night draw for drinking and excess. Often those partying are underage. Police are undermanned to deal with the crowds, according to the author:

If you’ve never sat on Second Street at 2 a.m., you should. People stagger in the streets, puke in the curbs, urinate in the alleyways, shout and fight. Police show a strong presence, but are greatly outnumbered by hordes of inebriated revelers, many of whom are headed to the conveniently located parking garage to drive home.

It takes little imagination to envision what a few guns in the hands of these people can add to the mix.

If you’ve ever sat on Second Street at 2 a.m., you weren’t shocked to hear two people were shot in a bar there last week. The surprise is that it doesn’t happen more often.

I live directly across the river from Harrisburg, just off Rt. 83 near the Rt. 581 split. We have often gone into Harrisburg since we’ve used Harrisburg Hospital for Abby’s birth, and our Obstetrician is there. We also have gone to the Whitaker Center for Science and the Arts. We would love to see a Harrisburg downtown that we could take the kids to for restaurants and attractions, but as the area turns to night-clubs, there are less options for those of us who are looking for dinner and evening fare. Check out the whole article for the author’s take on the situation.

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