We know: How is Rochester even in the same league as London, New Orleans or even Austin?
Kodak (Stock Quote: EK) is crumbling, Xerox (Stock Quote: XRX) is struggling with relevancy. From the outside, by rights, Rochester shouldn't have much to look forward to in 2012. The problem is, it's just not true.
Employers such as Bausch & Lomb and Genesee Brewing parent North American Brewing have kept Rochester's unemployment below 7% and falling. The latter has also managed to boost its beer business nearly 7% in 2010 while overall U.S. beer sales fell 1%. The real estate market, meanwhile, is a wonder: Home prices are actually up 1.4% since 2010 and have been rising steadily since the housing boom.
Sure, there are cold winters, feet of lake-effect snow and a sky that turns gray in October and usually stays that way until April. But the city that's been shrinking since the 1960s feels downright cozy in the treat-stocked aisles of a Wegmans supermarket, over a cheeseburger-and-mac-salad garbage plate at Nick Tahou's or with a Genny Cream Ale and a rack of ribs at Dinosaur Barbecue. It's shockingly stable, and that's about the best any city can ask for in 2012.