Welcome to Downtown Rochester

Rochester was my home town for almost 35 years. We actually lived in the city, although not right downtown. Sara, Ben and I are staying at a downtown hotel, where I get a birds-eye view of some of the changes. There’s lots of road construction happening. A major indoor shopping mall, Midtown, has been torn down. Otherwise, things look pretty much the same.

Our hotel is attached by a walkway to the convention center, which is hosting a religious conference for the Church of God Militant Pillar and Ground of the Truth. Many of the conference-goers are staying at the hotel, so the place is lively and full.

Here’s a partial view of downtown. The tall white building is the former Xerox headquarters building — no idea what’s in there now. Rochester has been struggling for many years with the loss of major corporate centers, not only Xerox but Gannett, Bausch & Lomb, Champion Products French’s Mustard. Kodak is still here but a shadow of its former economic dominance. Many of the film production buildings in the once massive Kodak Park have been torn down.

The largest employer is now the University of Rochester/UR Medicine, which includes the School of Nursing where I will be honored on Friday night.

Just to orient my friends who used to live in Rochester and no longer do, that’s the old Sibley building in the bottom pic, taller structure on the left side of Main St.

4 thoughts on “Welcome to Downtown Rochester

  1. Another downtown change – the inner loop is all filled in. I may be totally turned around, but wasn’t the white building with the sloping bottom a bank building? The dark building to its right looks more like Xerox HQ, which was across the street from the white bldg. Nothing looks the same any more!
    At least our old homes are still there. We just found out ours is for sale.

  2. for Phyllis: You’re right — posted a correction. Nothing downtown looks the same, including the inside of the Hyatt. I was at many events and conferences here back in the day, and I can’t get oriented. The lobby is entirely different. The rooms have had a big upgrade, at least on the primo floors where Ben and Sara get to stay, and are actually quite nice.

  3. Only you could be there at the time of that convention. The hotel is lively and full?? That’s worrisome. Watch out for your evil twiin.

  4. for Mary: I know. Believe me. The folks were so earnest in wishing me a blessed day I just went right on and wished them one back.

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