04 DEC 2009
I had originally taken this photo while sitting at a red light to show the festive decorations of my town's downtown district. But as I went through the pictures, I ended up choosing this one for an entirely different reason.
That building there in the foreground on the left is known around these parts as the Old Granite Hotel, and has been the subject of controversy over the last few years. It all started (as far as I can tell) when plans were made to demolish the old building, which is admittedly falling apart inside and entirely unsafe, and put in some much needed parking.
So what's the problem?
The building has historical significance. It was originally built (according to reports) in 1899 from granite quarried locally. The only building of its kind. The local historical societies want it preserved.
Different developers have come in with grand plans, but none of it has stuck. Arguments continue pitting history against cost. Of course I'm over-simplifying, but that's the base.
I've been watching the stories, watching the building, because I love the history. I love the significance of the building. But I also understand the viewpoint of the opposition. It'll be interesting to see where this all lands.