Wednesday, August 31, 2005


I have recently seen an article pertaining to the Old River Road project, discussed in the previous post [thank you, Byron, for finding and sending to me the on-line version of the article!], published May 17, 2005, in the Cleveland Plain Dealer. One of the statements made by the developer in this article, apparently to "justify" his destruction of an entire block of mostly historic buildings, was that the block is "blighted" and a "slum". Blighted?!?!? Blight is supposed to be a reference to an obvious, outward appearance that displays extreme neglect of maintenance. This is simply UNTRUE!! Agreeably, the buildings do not "sparkle", as if they were new, but, then again, what buildings other than actually-new ones do?? They do not have any sort of 'shabby' appearance, nor is there any other obvious signs of deterioration or decay. As for the "slum" claim made by the developer, since when does a commerical area get to be labelled a "slum"?? A slum, often synonomously referred to as a ghetto, has been traditionally reserved for referring to RESIDENTIAL areas. It usually includes the afore-mentioned "blight", and almost always is accompanied by various negative social conditions, such as poverty and crime. All this section of Old River Road is is a handful of buildings presently not being used. It should be obvious to everyone that these ludicrous "blighted" and "slum" claims are LIES being used to persuade the community that removing these buildings is 'necessary'. The article elsewhere tells of how this project will ultimately result in the spending of $225 million. Well, one thing is for sure: my arguments, which amount to mostly two or three, mostly pertaining to history and significant architecture, certainly can't stand a chance compared to the 225,000,000 arguments that the developer has -- now, can they??