Thursday, May 23, 2013

The Little Town That Could

Savannah, GA?
Stunning Historic District and vibrant downtown.
Charleston, SC?
Beautiful city center wrought with history and charm.
Portland, OR?
Historic districts worth a visit or two.

Jacksonville, FL?
News flash - Nobody wants to see empty weedy lots.

In a city where decisions are dragged out, postponed, procrastinated, tabled, it took Code Enforcement less than 24 hours from hearing about a house with an unstable gable to 'emergency' demolition.

Less than 24 hours.

It is frustrating, heartbreaking and maddening to be living in a city to values what could be its greatest asset  so little that it would rather spend close to $10,000 to demolish a historic structure in a nationally registered historic district than less than 10% of the same amount to stabilize and preserve it (placing a lien on the property to recoup the money).

Tonight, we are one empty lot 'richer' - 129 East Second Street in our historic district was demolished, and our lucky streak of 584 days without demolitions came to a sudden and sad end.

Tonight, give your ol' house a pat on the siding and tell her that you love her. She is special - there will be none like her ever - and she deserves your, our protection.

"We will probably be judged not by the monuments we build but by those we have destroyed."
 New York Times Editorial (on the destruction of Penn Station)

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