Why not consider using Audubon to fill some county needs?


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Posted Online: May 01, 2013, 3:20 pm
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Rock Island County voters recently rejected the "blank check" referendum to build a new courthouse. A committee will draft another proposal, this time with actual costs.

But, it was not just the "cost" voters are against, they oppose moving the courthouse from downtown. Another development that has met opposition is destruction of Audubon School for another grocery store on 18th Avenue. A new Fareway would saturate the market (especially given the new Walmart), and be a slap in the face to Aldi and Hy-Vee which have invested so much in that area.

Rather than taking an all-or-nothing approach, I believe we need innovative solutions that meet government needs (not their "wants") and also appease citizens.

For example, Fareway has not officially purchased the property. The county should buy Audubon and use it as a courthouse annex. Both buildings could be gutted and remodeled to meet today's standards. Audubon could host the traffic and civil courts, as well as county clerk offices. Violent cases could still be held downtown close to the jail. A centralized building is not necessary with today's technology.

Plus, many creative individuals have worked hard to revive downtown, and we cannot abandon all that work by removing its anchor. (The Seaford factory could be another option for an annex or police station.) I believe the leaders and citizens can find some resourceful solutions to meet today's needs while still preserving our history and character.

Devin Hansen,
Rock Island















 



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  Today is Wednesday, July 30, the 211th day of 2014. There are 154 days left in the year.
1864 -- 150 years ago: After Sept. 1, every small box of matches will be required to have a 3 cent duty Lincoln stamp on it, and every large box will be one cent for every 100 matches.
1889 -- 125 years ago: Rock Island residents had contributed a total of $1,293 to the American Red Cross for the Johnstown flood relief fund.
1914 -- 100 years ago: Capt. Clark Means, new darkhorse twirler for the ARGUS staff, was in great form in his initial contest as a mound laborer. The result was that THE ARGUS trimmed the Union 6-5.
1939 -- 75 years ago: Hunter and Humprey Moody, young Decatur, Ill, brothers, lack only a few hours of establishing a new world light plane endurance record.
1964 -- 50 years ago: Gates of the 110th annual Mercer County Fair swing open tonight at Aledo for a full week of day and night activity. More that $36,000 will be paid in premiums and race purses.
1989 -- 25 years ago: The baseball field carved out of the cornfield near Dyersville, Iowa, continues to keep dreams alive for hundreds of visitors. Tourists from 26 state and France have visited Dan Lansing's farm to see the baseball diamond seen in the hit movie "Field of Dreams."






(More History)