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Letters to the Editor

Letter: Money talks

November 5, 2013

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To the editor:

I’ve just learned of a new plan of Doug Compton’s to tear down the Allen Press building and replace it with a pharmacy chain store and a seven-story apartment building. I can only hope that the friend who informed me of the plan was mistaken, that he was having a very bad dream that certainly won’t come true.

However, knowing him as well as I do and now well-familiar with the ways of the City Commission when it comes to large, unsuitable building projects, I have no doubt that protesting approval of this further change to the character of Lawrence’s downtown and the East Lawrence residential area will be useless.

Completely out of character with the wonderful old limestone courthouse, architecturally having no similarities to the beautiful bank building that houses Watkins Museum of History, it will not blend in or benefit anyone who lives in Lawrence.

As with the opposition by property owners to the new ordinance requiring them to take responsibility for proper upkeep of their rentals, the City Commission will again ignore the public comments of those who will be most affected and bow to those whose investment is not in our community, but rather in their own financial security.

Whether it be the construction of new buildings or the preservation of history, the addition of even more student housing in the form of apartment complexes or an effort to maintain affordable decent rental homes for families, we can be sure that our City Commission will vote with those whose money enriches the city’s tills.

Comments

John Graham 5 months, 1 week ago

I am not advocating any tax money going to the project or for the city to forgive any future tax bills. If the plan is viable it should not need public money in any shape or form to make it work. But how can people label it an eyesore and bad for downtown before the final plans are available for review? I thought the idea of a hotel at the north edge of campus sounded like a horrible idea. The final version in my opinion is a stunning building that adds greatly to the area. I have seen chain pharmacies that have locations that are not "cookie cutter". Can't make an informed statement about the new building until the final plans are available. I can certainly say the current boarded up building is an eyesore that does nothing to improve downtown from an architectural standpoint or functional standpoint.

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Richard Heckler 5 months, 1 week ago

New cookie cutter project could be a strain on human vision = new eyesore. Not to mention millions upon millions of tax dollar corporate welfare attached to the project.

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John Graham 5 months, 2 weeks ago

Keep the eyesore. Change is bad.

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John Graham 5 months, 2 weeks ago

Better to keep the old boarded up building on Mass. It really helps keep the architectural character of the surrounding historic buildings intact. The proposed pharmacy would not benefit anyone in downtown or greater Lawrence as there are so many other stores downtown that already carry what a pharmacy would.

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Lawrence Morgan 5 months, 2 weeks ago

Let me see the drawings of this project. I can make a lot better use of my time once I see what they really have planned, visually.

It certainly seems that 7 stories is much too high for this part of town! And the building should be in character with that of the courthouse, that is certain.

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