How About a Parade of Affordability?
This year is the 50th anniversary of the Austin Parade of Homes
. Friday’s Statesman included a nice article
on the first Parade of Homes in 1953. The comparisons between the two events were noteworthy. In 1953, the homes featured in the Parade cost between $17,000 and $19,500, when the average home sold for about $10,000. Putting homes in the 1953 Parade at ~82.5% above the cost of an average home. The homes in the 1953 Parade ranged from 1,300 to 1,500 square feet. In the 2003 Parade, the homes range from 6,200 to 8,300 square feet cost more than $1.5 million each. The average value of a home in Austin today is $175,100, putting the homes in this year’s Parade at more than 850% of the cost of an average home.
The differences between the 1953 and 2003 homes are striking. The 1953 homes were intended to be within the range of a large proportion of the post-war home buying market. While there are many $1.5 million homes in the Austin area it is hard to imagine that they represent a significant portion of today's market. We also need to ask what are people doing today that we need 4,900 to 6,800 additional square feet in our homes.
ACL Fest Day 1
What a great day. Perfect weather, tons of great music, and a stunningly beautiful sunset. I saw great sets from Los Lonely Boys, Robert Earl Keen, and Steve Earle. I can’t tell you how many times I walked across the 15 acre site. I may be taking advantaging of the on-site chair massages today, if I can find time between the bands. About the only complaint that I heard was how the sound from one stage frequently intrudes on another audience. This was particularly noted at the Singer-Songwritter stage where Robert Earl played, and where it was reportedly even worse for Alexi Murdoch. Rules for today: chair, sunscreen, sweater, and drink more water.
I was recently working on a Blue Planet
adventure for GenCon SoCal
but wasn’t sure what I to do. I knew that I wanted it to be more straightforward and action-oriented. At any rate, I had to go by Waterloo Records to pick-up a gift for a friend. While there, I picked-up a Toots & the Maytals CD for myself. On it is the track “Funky Kingston.” This triggered thoughts of a Harder They Come
style, blaxploitation-themed adventure set in Kingston and focusing on a native from the Zion Islands that has come to the big city to make his way, only to run afoul of Mister Big. I started to reject the idea, not wanting to set another adventure in Kingston where my adventure for GenCon 2001 had been set. But then, I have learned that it is important to follow these intuitive leads where ever they may go. So, Funky Kingston it is. Now, I just have to get it ready for an October 11th test run. Beside, with one more, I’ll have a Kingston Trio.