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Archive for Sunday, October 28, 2001

Free State environs

October 28, 2001

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To the editor:

In voting 3-2 to allow a big box store of some 130,000 square feet to be built next to Free State High School, the city commission revealed itself to be dwelling in a twilight zone of logic.

Commissioners proclaimed that Lawrence was in desperate need of the home improvement store that might be built on the site, even as the ink was still drying on their approval of a Home Depot for 31st and South Iowa.

Commissioners stated that Lawrence desperately needed tax revenues from this project in order to pay for the additional schools, fire and police services that Lawrence's growth has made necessary. The commissioners concluded that the only way to pay for unrestricted growth is to allow more unrestricted growth.

Finally, the majority on the city commission asked us to believe that they will be able to say no to similarly outrageous proposals in the future, including schemes for the undeveloped land directly in front of FSHS even though their track record in such matters suggests exactly the opposite.

Ten years from now, it will be important to remember who started us down the road to overdevelopment next to, in front of, and down the street from our high school who fundamentally changed the character of northwest Lawrence. Their names are Kennedy, Henry, and Hack.

Jeff Moran,

Lawrence

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