By: Diane Benjamin
Bloomington held a Council work session last night to hear plans for downtown. David Sage was absent. Do you have a right to know why your elected representative wasn’t there? 9 people are going to decide the future of Bloomington, if any can’t attend a vital meeting, and you can’t hear their thoughts, don’t you have a right to know why?
Alderman Buragus clearly showed why she is Renner’s favorite alderman late in the meeting. Watch her comments starting at 2:27:45 and Tari’s comments after her.
Quote: “If we fully vet these projects . . . benefits will out weigh risk . . . move our City forward”.
What is the Council “moving our City forward” to? Heard those lines before?
Bloomington’s newest consultant, Steve Friedman, said more than Tari probably wanted him to. Watch his response to a question from David Hales starting at 32:00. Watch at least 1 1/2 minutes.
- He has studied Route 66 traffic north of Bloomington, there is some, but it’s not huge
- Hotel would help a downtown restaurant
- A downtown hotel has to tap into demand already there
Friedman evidently doesn’t know about long time downtown restaurants (like Lancasters) that closed.
Earlier he stated a hotel has to have 70% occupancy to be successful. Point 3 should scare not only citizens but current hotel owners like the Chateau and the Double Tree. “Tapping into demand already there” means taking business away from them. Think Uptown. Koos’s plan to make downtown the center of Normal’s universe worked perfectly by closing businesses located elsewhere in the Normal.
Now listen to Alderman Lower discussing the same thing AND getting cut off by Renner. Lower is having a conversation with David Bentley. Start watching at 2:06:20. Lower wants to know what the City is doing to attract people from outside the County, otherwise “we are just regenerating and competing with people we’ve already got”.
Renner pretended that he was ending discussion. It didn’t end. Obviously Renner doesn’t want anyone to know he is following the Koos plan to force people downtown. Koos didn’t care what businesses not located in Uptown shut down, neither does Renner.
Citizens have told the City many times “Needs before Wants”. The citizens think needs consist of roads, sewers, police, and fire. The City think it NEEDS Uptown Bloomington.
If your needs aren’t the same as the City’s, you elected the wrong people.
Elections have consequences, the Coliseum and BCPA were sold as “moving the City forward” too. How’s that working Council?