NEW CASTLE —
(First of two editorials)
New Castle has two very different — and very interesting — proposals to use a now-vacant downtown building.
And it is up to city officials to decide which — if either — should be granted nearly $2 million in public funds to make one of these visions for the Cascade Center at the Riverplex become a reality.
This is the building at the corner of East Washington and Mill streets, once viewed as the foundation for a rebirth of downtown development. It now sits empty.
But not for long — at least in the dreams of the two groups vying for control of the structure. They want to put the building to constructive use, and the city has the task of making a crucial step toward determining the downtown’s future.
Seeking to gain control of the Cascade Center are the Lawrence County Economic Development Corp., which touts it as valuable office space, and a nonprofit New Castle Center for Arts and Technology, which sees the building as an arts and educational facility modeled along the lines of Pittsburgh’s successful Manchester Bidwell Corp. Spearheading this proposal is Dayna Shaw Sear, executive director of the Crisis Shelter of Lawrence County.
Both proposals, by the way, call for using the space once designated for the Mill Street Grille for another restaurant, believing they can make a new effort financially viable.
This week, representatives of the two proposals sat down with the editorial board of the New Castle News to outline their plans, hopes and expectations. We found both presentations to be intriguing and potentially rewarding for the community.
We also thought the two projects provide the sort of intellectual spark needed in New Castle to examine the future of the downtown and the city as a whole.
Even though the two proposals are, to some degree, in competition with each other, this is about more than one group beating out the other.
Greatly boiled down here, the economic development corporation is in talks with a business looking to relocate between 50 and 100 office jobs now in Ohio. If a deal can be struck, the corporation sees this as a catalyst for bringing more businesses to the downtown and putting so much empty space there to actual use.
The arts and technology group also has the goal of reviving the downtown, mainly through nonprofit arts programs and employment training facilities tailored to fit local business needs. Supporters of this concept also say there is room in the massive building for their proposal and for the jobs the economic development corporation is hoping to attract.
While the two proposals have potential, they also come with concerns.
Tomorrow, we’ll look at some of those and discuss the aggressive role the city needs to play to best serve the citizens of this community.
NEW CASTLE —
(First of two editorials)
Our Opinion: Message from Putin
There’s little that’s known about the shooting down of a Malaysian jetliner near the Ukraine-Russian border. But one thing is certain: The incident and its aftermath are stark reminders that Russian President Vladimir Putin is not a reliable partner.
Our Opinion: Although Corbett signs plan, many uncertainties remain
We’re not sure what to make of Pennsylvania’s budget situation at this point. Yes, the commonwealth does have a budget, after Gov. Tom Corbett signed a spending plan approved by the Legislature.
Our Opinion: Transportation funding suffers with everything else
The House voted overwhelmingly yesterday to provide continued funding to the federal Highway Trust Fund.
Our Opinion: New study suggests problem with some state shale gas wells
A recent study of leaks from shale gas wells raises more questions than it answers. And because of the growing presence of shale gas wells in Pennsylvania, it’s essential that both government and industry provide clarity.
Our Opinion: New round of Mideast violence threatens to expand
Anyone looking for peace in the Middle East will have to wait. Probably for quite a while.
Our Opinion: Impractical spending plan leaves state hanging
The fate of Pennsylvania’s budget for the new fiscal year remains uncertain. But one thing is clear, the state Legislature has bungled its responsibilities once again.
Our Opinion: Boehner, House complain, but refuse to act
House Speaker John Boehner says he plans to file suit against President Obama for overreaching his authority.
Dear Reader: Efficiency overlooked in Pennsylvania budget crisis
Politicians in Harrisburg are rounding up the usual suspects while crafting a balanced budget for the new fiscal year.
Our Opinion: State House passes meaningless measure
The Pennsylvania House has approved a $29.1 billion budget that includes no tax increase. The plan shifts some funds, eliminates various tax breaks and counts the privatization of state liquor stores as key ways to close a $1.7 billion hole in state finances.
Our Opinion: Supreme Court limits police access to cellphones
This week’s Supreme Court decision requiring search warrants before police seize cellphones came as a shock. It wasn’t the ruling itself that surprised. To the contrary, we viewed it as perfectly appropriate.
- More Editorials Headlines
- Our Opinion: Message from Putin