I am writing regarding your recent article, “Rebuilding Santa Clara’s Soul”. It is a very informative article but the best part is the last paragraph that states: ” According to a statement from the city, there have been seven failed attempts in the last 55 years to revitalize the “lost downtown from 1960″. Research has not found that any other location has been successful, and if Santa Clara succeeds it would be the first.”
I am a firm believer that you cannot recapture the past once it is gone from your grip. In the 1960’s our downtown was demolished. That is when something should have been done to prevent our loss. All the stores are gone and none of the businesses of that time will return. The Santa Clara theater is no more and that too will not return. Of the mentioning of businesses that may occupy the space, who are they and will they bring anyone “downtown” to visit them??
While the group working on this project is doing the best they can. I cannot see success. Instead of “revitalizing ” a downtown that is no longer with us, why not spend that $400,000 on something that will benefit our city. Don’t move city hall, it is centrally located and works well where it is. El Camino has more businesses already and more apartments as well, and if you ask citizens where they shop, you will have a better idea regarding this project and its benefits, if any. If they build it will they come??
What will you do with the buildings that are already in the selected location?? Tear them down?? This would be a repeat performance of 1960. Santa Clara no longer has a “downtown” and we have survived that for more than 50 years. Hiring a “consultant” is money poorly spent. How can a paid consultant overcome the past mistakes?? I don’t think they can. Time has marched on and we lost.