Friday, November 23, 2007

Local Opinion

Letters to the editor
Link (NS)

Harrison Square project is already making a difference
"While the loss of so many homes may have made some people shudder, the impact was lessened when Jerry Martin of Martin Demolition chose to recycle as much of the building materials as possible by allowing our company and several others to conduct salvaging operations on the homes and businesses prior to their removal. Many tons of wood, brick and appliances were given a reprieve from their ultimate destiny of a trip to the landfill.

Jerry Martin, Supt. Frank Kimmel and brownfield manager Gary Lymann arranged for the demolition to take place in five phases. Staggering the times allowed the utilities to be removed, a parking lot to be built for Lincoln employees, 80 percent of the Montessori School and two other buildings to be recycled and enabled the FWFD and FWPD time to use the homes and businesses for training exercises. Talk about getting “the biggest bang for the city's buck.”

With that said, let's go back to the Harrison Square project. Some people seem to think that this was a knee-jerk response to Mayor Richard announcing that he was not seeking re-election and he wanted to leave a grand legacy at the taxpayers' expense. We won't get into the “no property taxes used” issue because if you don't understand how it worked yet, then you never will."
"Think of it this way: The business corridors (Broadway, Calhoun, Fairfield and Wells) are the veins leading to a new heart. The Grand Wayne, library, Embassy and Hilton are part of that new heart. Harrison Square is the “defibrillator” used to get the new heart functioning, pumping new blood and creating new cells throughout the veins. There may be a few setbacks, but eventually, the hope is that everything will function harmoniously and we might have a new lease on life."
"It appears to us that if things are already happening downtown and on the corridors with just the announcement of the project's approval, just think what's going to happen when you start to see the bricks and mortar being laid. And for all of you who opposed and fought against Harrison Square, please don't feel too bad. Because of your opposition, the ballpark was enhanced from its original design to make it even more appealing to the community. We thank you. Since the project is going to happen, if you'll take all that opposition energy you may have left over and turn it into support, we could have many sold-out games in the future. Just remember, while the ballpark may be one of the tools used to draw interest to the core of our city, it is first and foremost for the citizens' enjoyment, and it doesn't need to generate large profits in order for it to be a success. But, just the same, we are going to use the heck out of it. Hope you will, too."
Letters to the editor
Link (JG)
Use local builders for project
"As a taxpayer and worker in Fort Wayne, I feel local contractors, workers and suppliers should be used to build the Harrison Square project. Many times in the past and present, out-of-town or out-of-state contractors and suppliers are being used for our public projects. We need to look in our own backyard. Our city has many good contractors, and our local economy would be better served if these projects were done with local companies."