Cincyopolis is no USA Today and was never intended to appeal to the masses. In fact when I started the blog last summer, I doubted anybody else would be interested in reading about the intersection of public policy and commercial real estate development in Cincinnati. It’s pretty heady stuff. But as long as I was determined to educate myself, I figured I might as well make a record of what I was learning, organize my thoughts and share the information just in case anybody else might be likewise inclined.
With 70 posts under my belt, here’s what the numbers say:
Cincyopolis has 957 followers and on any given day about 150-200 readers click through to check out my now-daily post. In the world of blogs that’s peanuts. UrbanCincy attracts a couple of thousand every single day. But with so much competition for our attention, so many choices, I am absolutely flabbergasted that this many sophisticated, intelligent, highly educated human beings pay me the compliment of caring about what Kathy Holwadel thinks.
The most popular post was the recap of the Cincinnati Design Disaster Awards, topping the charts at over 750 views in a single day – proof positive that we know our built environment is, indeed, very important to the quality of our communal lives. It edged out the former one-day view leader, ‘Dusty Rhodes, I think I owe you an apology’ in which I felt compelled to admit my mistaken implication that the Hamilton County Auditor was behind a conspiracy to lower taxes for commercial property owners in the Central Business District. Mr. Rhodes not only graciously accepted my apology, but re-posted a link to it on the home page of the Auditor’s site.
Topics that get the most attention include posts about the Port Authority, Queen City Square (Great American Tower) and the Hamilton County Board of Revision. Of course that focus probably reflects my own obsessions as opposed to any bias on the part of unsuspecting readers.
While I am the only regular writer on Cincyopolis, that does not mean I work alone. Behind the scenes I have regular help from super-smart thinkers who contribute facts, perspectives and data analysis but prefer to keep a low profile. I even have more than one “Deep Throat”, insiders who share information others would prefer they didn’t.
My proudest moment as an amateur journalist happened this week when a transportation activist asked me to attend the Planning Commission meeting after the Wasson Way Land Use proposal was pulled from the agenda at the last minute. I found myself taking notes alongside highly respected professionals from the Enquirer and the Business Courier. What an age we live in, where everyone with a passion can share in the responsibility to shape our public conversation.
Who are you Cincyopolis readers with such peculiar tastes? Based on the comments I receive, regulars include the most influential people in Cincinnati: primarily journalists, civic activists, real estate professionals, and politicians and their staffs.
So if you are reading this blog, well, you’re a little bit weird, maybe a tad on the wonky-side – and I thank-you from the bottom of my heart because you are the reason I can’t stop asking questions, trudging up to City Hall, pouring over records on the Auditor’s site, hounding officials when something doesn’t make sense to me, an average citizen. It’s in the hope that what I learn might help us all be better-informed about the big, expensive decisions that impact Cincinnati for generations to come.