Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Ice House- Thank You + Save the Chimney

Below is our follow-up letter to the City of Asheville for purchasing the Ice House property in order to effectively address the short-term challenges while also creating long-term positive outcomes.  There is discussion that the City will demolish the building, and if so, we are lobbying to save the large brick chimney.  Please come to the WECAN meeting this Thursday if you would like more information on this issue.

December 3, 2012

Honorable Terry Bellamy, Mayor of Asheville
Asheville City Council
Gary Jackson, Asheville City Manager
Stephanie Monson, COA Riverfront Redevelopment Coordinator and Urban Planner for Economic             Development
Chief William J. Anderson, City of Asheville Chief of Police
Lt. Jamee Crawford, Asheville Police Department
Evan Coward, Asheville Police Department Community Resource Officer
Heather Dillashaw, The Asheville-Buncombe Homeless Initiative, City of Asheville
Marsha Stickford, City of Asheville Neighborhood Volunteer Coordinator
Dawa Hitch, City of Asheville Community Relations Division Head
Anne Simmons
Tootie Lee

To Whom It May Concern:

We very much appreciate the acknowledgement and prompt attention to the growing problems at the Ice House on Riverside Drive. It is clear the City leaders heard the concerns of citizens to address this problem site.  Beyond that, we were very excited to learn that the City had acquired an option to secure the property, and most recently, is now in ownership of the property.  With the city’s leadership and vision, we now believe that this site will actually become a significant community asset, instead of an ongoing community concern. Additionally, we commend the city taking a compassionate approach, working collaboratively across departments, to provide resources to those who had been utilizing the building for shelter.   
We are still concerned about the building being unsecured in the short term.  While we understand there are plans to demolish the building, we hope the City will take care to address the ability for people to access the building in the short term.  Additionally, if demolition does proceed, we request that every effort be made to save the tall, brick smokestack on the property.
Finally, we remain concerned about the other vacant buildings that remain open and unsecured, posing dangerous risks to the public.
We thank the City of Asheville for stepping forward with the leadership that was needed to address this issue and we look forward to continued collaboration among leaders and the community as our neighborhoods grow and change.

West End / Clingman Avenue Neighborhood  (WECAN)

River Arts District Business Association (RADBA)

River Arts District Artists (RADA)

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