'All these raggedy homes down here. I know they can do better'

Historic 25th Street is nice and everything.

But Ed Wheeler, sitting with a friend outside a convenience store in southern Ogden, taking a breather on a hot day, says it shouldn’t be city boosters’ only focus of attention. There’s plenty more that merits their focus.

“They fix everything up downtown,” Wheeler says, singling out city efforts to bolster the 25th Street commercial and dining strip. “What (Mayor Mike Caldwell) needs to do is come out here and spend a week with the poor people. You can tell them to come on down and talk to me.”

He gestures to the worn homes nearby on 30th Street and Lincoln Avenue, suggesting they could be a starting point for rejuvenation efforts in the neighborhood. “All these raggedy homes down here. I know they can do better,” he says.

Still, it’s not all complaints. Despite it all, Wheeler, who works in construction and home remodeling, likes living in Ogden, even if he thinks city leaders need to put more focus on rundown neighborhoods. He’s lived in Detroit, Los Angeles and other big cities, but they’re too big, too loud.

“It’s just a small town. That’s what I like about it,” he says. “Like I say, getting away from big cities. I done did all that. I don’t want to do that no more.”


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