The Hilltop is my beloved neighborhood; “Upper Tacoma” never really fit, nor does the city’s current subarea plan with its “MLK district” and “Hillside District.”
At one point, our home was included in the “Tacoma Avenue Corridor,” a strange entity that was four blocks wide and 20 blocks long with little connective tissue between. Nonetheless, we were designated as a Community Based Services area.
The subarea planners simply stretched this corridor a bit longer and renamed it “Hillside,” as if drawing a rectangle on a map and slapping a name on it could erase our identity as part of the Hilltop.
Try comparing the Google map for “Hilltop, Tacoma” with the map presented in Tacoma’s Subarea Plan.
The Google map shows a neighborhood; the subarea plan map – with its “MLK district” and “Hillside District” – is a narrow, stringy looking construction that could only have been created by someone with little understanding of how neighborhoods are formed or sustained. Perhaps, sadly, neighborhoods are not even on the radar in this process.