Sunday, September 18, 2005

Letter to Lou Ann

Lou Ann, [Commissioner Lou Ann Palmer]

I commend you for sticking to your guns on having this huge project [Pineapple Square] reviewed by the CRA Advisory Board. It is truly the right thing to do, and it is unfortunate that your fellow Commissioners did not see fit to follow your lead.

I think in the end their decision will backfire.

As for the project itself, I have followed it closely, and there are numerous unanswered questions. While the project appears to be a very nice one, there are serious economic ramifications which need to be studied closely,with a detailed Economic Impact Analysis, certified Appraisals and Valuations of the Lemon/State Street site, the street vacation, infrastructure needs, etc.

I trust that you will see that these items are looked into. In addition, the size and extent of this proposal could have a serious impact on the overall quality of life for the City. You know how I feel about parking garages and creating more spaces for more cars. We have had several discussions on this, and I truly feel that it is the entirely wrong approach.

More people downtown, yes, but NOT more cars!!!

As an aside, I have an even greater concern for the continuous lack of Affordable/Workforce Housing both in the City and the County, leading us to becoming an "elitist" community, soon approaching no housing availability,both purchase and rental, for our service workers, and others less fortunate.

Sorry that I got a little lengthy with this, but again, thanks for hanging in there on the CRA Advisory Board issue.

All the best.

Joe Barbetta

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