[photos by Keegan Frank, official Freedom Fotographer]
According to talk-radio, the Webbs have said they will come to the Council tomorrow (Tuesday, May 5) with a CentrePointe update.
Last week, Vice Mayor Jim Gray and Lexington Convention and Visitors Bureau Executive Director David Lord both pressed for — at a minimum — sidewalks and grass. The fences are reportedly being pushed back even as we speak.
One caller to the 36Listens line last week encouraged the Mayor and the Vice Mayor to give the Webbs time.
It’s been a year.
And we all know time is relative.
In a 2006 debate with then-candidate Jim Newberry, then-mayor Teresa Isaac mentioned in passing the possibility of eminent domain and condemnation of Lexington Mall as a means of re-opening the dead discussion, saying, “The developer will not cooperate with anyone in town or return anyone’s phone calls.”
What she got was public condemnation of her mayoral candidacy (losing to Newberry).
It was a poor choice of words. Public passion on the Water Company condemnation ran high. Isaac had a rough go with much of the local media, and a rougher one with Vice Mayor Mike Scanlon and much of the Council.
The Mall still sits empty in a state of what anyone could reasonably describe as “blight,” as the developers duked it out in court with Home Depot.
The concept — government asking questions of developers who neglect a high profile property that is intrinsic to the good of the city — is a valid one. Every private property owner operates within certain boundaries of law, codes, and ordinances.
Lexington Mall sits at the corner of New Circle and Richmond Road on a major corridor into the city. It serves nearby neighborhoods as diverse as Idle Hour, lakeside apartments, Woodhill, Henry Clay, and Fontaine.
It’s been three years since that 2006 controversial mayoral debate. And nothing has changed at Lexington Mall. It’s still nothing more than a cut-thru to get to the movies at hoodhill.
It’s been more than a year since CentrePointe was announced. Council members expressed concerns then about the prospect of “a vertical Lexington Mall.”
A year is enough time to have built more than a mudhole.