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Wednesday, October 30, 2013
I am so confused and conflicted about the Elmwood Park project. Yes, a renovated amphitheater is nice. I sincerely hope it is successful beyond Roanoke City Council’s seemingly somewhat glum expectations.
According to the story Oct. 18 (“Elmwood puts people before profit”), Assistant City Manager Brian Townsend said, “The park wasn’t built with a ‘return on investment business purpose.’ ” The story goes on to say it could have some bigger acts come through, but the Salem Civic Center is cheaper and is run more aggressively, thus more attractive to midlevel acts.
I understand that the city wants local festivals to continue to have a home, and I agree with that, but $7 million to keep doing the same old stuff seems ridiculous.
“People before profit” sounds nice, but when my tax dollars helped pay for it, I’d like to see some return on my investment. This city constantly cuts funding to essential programs, but every pet project seems to get a green light.
I hope city council tries to make this a beneficial part of Roanoke. It’s a beautiful amphitheater, and I would love to see it live up to its full potential.
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