Thursday, November 8, 2007


Council shift precursor to change
Link (JG)

"While Crawford was quick to say the smoking vote didn’t cost him the election, he believed it was the vote in support of the $120 million Harrison Square project that had a greater effect. The public-private downtown development has been a divisive issue since it was announced. It includes a Courtyard by Marriott, private condominium/retail building and city-owned baseball stadium.

Crawford said he could have won re-election had he voted against the project, but several other project supporters won election. In fact, the council might include even stronger supporters of the project than before.

Schmidt was one of the three members to oppose the development, along with Shoaff and Smith. Goldner has spoken much more positively about the development and supported it as a member of the city’s redevelopment commission.

While the outgoing Crawford and Talarico both supported the project, so did incoming Bender and Brown. Harper expressed concerns about the project but has not said he will work to stop it.

With Henry, an ardent Harrison Square supporter, leading the city, and a supportive council, it would appear difficult to change or cut the project that should be under way when the new officials take office next year."