It’s been another great year here at The Urban Phoenix, and with some very interesting prospects on the horizon for 2019 and beyond, we are just as excited to more forward.
In the last year, we have continued to grow our regular readership, adding over 100 new subscribers (nearly 400 total). We had over 86,000 views (which doesn’t even include views from our nearly 400 subscribers!), 88 new articles, including 13 articles republished by Strong Towns, a nationally-read blog that focuses on smart, sustainable urbanism.
While it wasn’t the largest year readership-wise, it was the year with the most consistent month-to-month readership. In the past, many articles, specifically ones that had meaning to a particular city I visited, garnered the lion’s share of the total views for a given year. In 2018, we really didn’t have one of those “super-posts.” Nearly every story was consistently read at a similar rate, which means we are building a regular readership. That is and always be our goal… to be a consistent destination for people who care about urbanistic ideas and conversations.
Sometimes I look at the numbers and wish I could do more. I am the lone writer, editor and investigator for the UP’s content. The UP has no funding source, save my own wallet. I have no advertising dollars coming in, and no oversight from a larger entity. So while the progress might be slow, the content is free of any outside agenda or influence, and thus honest in its ability to say what needs to be said without repercussions from funding sources, political interests, etc. I write the UP’s content because I truly believe in the message, and believe that there is a growing audience that is becoming more aware of the most important urban conversations in Upstate New York and across our country.
In 2018, the UP placed an even greater focus on smart Urbanism in our cities today and in the future, while still working to open the eyes to the beauty and fun of our emerging cities today. While our urban centers have a long way to go to fix decades of mistakes, it’s still important to revel in the beautiful architecture, the exploding food, drink, brewery and coffee bar scenes, etc. Our “Beautiful Bones” series worked to keep the light, fun and locally focused UP posts alive, highlighting the best of Syracuse, Binghamton, Rochester and Buffalo. More of these to come in 2019!
Speaking of the New Year, our focus will include a new series for the “urbanist-light,” or the person who might like what’s happening in our cities, but doesn’t really want to get deep into the guts of urban planning and city design… yet. I looked back on 4 years of the UP and now realize that my present desire to highlight the components of a successful and sustainable urban revitalization grew from my simple love of city life. In essence, I had to love my city, and cities in general before I wanted to really learn what made them work. With this in mind, 2019 will be the year we attempt to reconnect people who have fallen victim to the horrors urban stereotypes, and show this group that cities have something for everyone today. The goal is to welcome everyone to the table and help as many folks as possible reconnect with the urban experience.
Finally, as always, thank you to everyone who has followed the UP for 4 years, or 4 days. You are the good people that inspire me to move forward, to dig deeper and learn more, and ultimately to share that knowledge with you. Cheers to a wonderful 2019, let’s see what we can do together!