Now, I’m not saying Niagra Falls, NY, is a shitty place to live. I’ve never been there. BUT, the fact they have invested some of their municipal budget in trying to lure young people by offering to pay down their student debt, does beg the question, are there places so shitty that they couldn’t pay you to live there? And is Niagra Falls that shitty a place? Seth Picarillo, Niagra Falls director of community development seems to think Niagra Falls ISN’T so shitty that you wouldn’t move there if someone paid you, and is spearheading an initiative that will offer recent, debt-ridden grads $7000 in debt relief over two years. He imagines downtown Niagra Falls becoming something like the recently gentrified Columbia City neighborhood in Seattle, in his words, a “ young and artistic neighborhood in a small area that included yoga studios, music venues, coffee houses.” Part of me wants to tell Mr. Picarillo that Columbia City was a neighborhood in Seattle, an awesome city, as opposed to Niagra Falls, which is a suburb of BUFFALO, a depressing rust belt city that might as well be in Canada (no disrespect to Canada. You all should know, I LOVE Canada). But part of me just wants to applaud Mr. Picarillo’s plan, because he’s dreaming big. And if any of you are in the mood for change/saddled with debt you can’t pay down/want to be closer to Canada, you should look into this.