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Keep the pavilion public

Register • Jul 23, 2013 at 12:26 PM

My topic this week is the Sandusky Bay Pavilion meeting.

Quite a few people showed up for the pavilion meeting to put forth their suggestions and ideas, but they were mostly concerned with whether or not the park was going to stay a park. The foundations do not want to invest their money without having some guarantee that the master plan will not sit on the shelf gathering dust like all other plans that the city buys into. Above all, the foundations don’t want to sink money into the project and have the land sold out from under them or traded off at a later date. The foundations are considering a substantial investment and they feel a need to protect their investment for years down the line.

To see more ideas and conversation about the pavilion, click HERE

The pavilion is another example of keeping hope alive for development if nothing is done with the project. The situation of doing nothing and delaying things for years is a becoming a big problem for the city because they cannot bring themselves to move ahead and make a decision once and for all. They allow a little group of people to keep pounding away at involving the city with major development and having the taxpayer pick up the financial expense. In the meantime, the state is urging the city to get moving and stop dragging their feet on the state’s investment it made years ago. The state has an obligation to protect their grant investment as well.

There are a few business people who think the city can just sell or trade the land. The land has a grant connected to it. There needs to be comparable land to do a tradeoff, and it can’t be land that the city already owns. Certain people still don’t understand the situation and they still think they can push the idea of getting rid of the park at its present location.

There are people who would like to see a hotel built but a hotel cannot stand by itself without other development to promote it. Some people would like to see a convention center but that idea will close off the waterfront. This kind of development can be planned anywhere and doesn’t necessarily have to be on the waterfront. If waterfront property is needed, there is always the Apex site. It is always easier financially for the developers to buy or trade land from the city dirt cheap then to buy expensive property like the Apex property.

Until next week, there was a show of hands at the meeting to see who was in favor of saving the park. An overwhelming majority of hands went up to save it. Trying to take the land from the people for development will not be a popular stance. The group has attempted to take over the land twice before and both times they were unsuccessful.

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