To the editor:
I was disappointed to see the coverage of the Sept. 20 Historic Resources Commission meeting denying the 12th and Oread project buried on page four of the newspaper. There has been extensive coverage of this project on the front page of the paper in recent weeks, yet the result of the HRC meeting did not merit front page status nor did the specific content of the meeting apparently deserve attention at all.
As a current member of the HRC, I believe that there are misconceptions that our body is against redevelopment. In the context of the 12th and Oread project, the HRC is actually supportive of the concept. It is the enormity of the project that is concerning. This building as presented is slightly more than 94 feet tall. Compare this building with the US Bank building, which is 77 feet tall; the Eldridge Hotel, which is 63 feet tall; or Hobbs Taylor Lofts, which is 76 feet tall. Not only is this project nearly 20 feet taller than these other buildings, it would be on one of the highest points in Lawrence. The proponents of this project are well aware of the concerns of the HRC and choose to blatantly disregard them.
The initial proposal in 2006 was a project of 80 feet tall. The developers decided to come back in 2007 and make their request significantly larger. How one can argue that such a building would not encroach upon, damage or destroy the environs of the listed historic properties is beyond me.