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Democrat & Chronicle
February 5, 2011

Post-industrial cities nationwide have embraced the idea to rebuild their images and economies from the inside out, with a focus on downtown development. In Rochester, a number of existing and developing housing units are intended to draw young professionals to the center city, in the hopes that putting the cart before the horse will jumpstart the relocation and investment of businesses. "Young professionals will play not a very important role but an absolutely essential role in the revitalization of downtown," said Bret Garwood, acting commissioner of the city's Department of Neighborhood and Business Development.

A housing market study conducted by the city several years ago showed that people in their 20s and 30s, usually without needs won't be created. But not everyone is on board with that belief. "A downtown area should be a mix of restaurants, retail, businesses and some housing, not mainly housing," said Anthony Anderson, 26. "I think that's the wrong philosophy, and it should be the other way around." Anderson, an executive recruiter for A.J. Berman and Associates, said he doesn't know too many young professionals who want to live downtown. "Our downtown doesn't have the influence of other major cities. It's still for the most part pretty bleak," said Anderson, who lives in the 19th Ward. "Most of the young professionals I know, they're in South Wedge, they're in Corn Hill, they're in places where things are going on and there's a warmth to these areas." An interactive real estate map on the city's