If anyone has the capacity and the know how to do urban planning, it is Councilor Connell. He knows his stuff backwards and forwards. And though this does not necessarily indicate personality, he has the ability to speak eloquently and very convincingly. Unfortunately, he has had a past track record of not following through on projects. He will have the listener practically eating out of his hand (and loving it) and then nothing comes later to reinforce the message. Now to his credit, he has worked hard to overcome this shortfall and has come out with really substantive stuff when it comes to zoning initiatives. He has honed his skills to the point that he talks a big deal and then follows up thankfully with actually doing a big deal.
He has one flaw – liberal arrogance. It wouldn’t be so bad a thing since we have a lot of arrogant liberals in town (you get used to it after awhile); but unfortunately the good counselor is trying to advance some great legislation and then gets the ‘Plebeians’ so angry at some arrogant statement, people shoot down the effort. We ‘Plebeians’ get mad because it’s usually some cheap shot and denigratingly dismissive. I mean this most recent line during the Storey Avenue rezoning, “It’s only a zoning change.” Say what? We may be Plebeians but we’ve also ‘been-around-the-block-awhile’ Plebeians – who was he (and the Planning Director) trying to convince?