The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

Opinion

October 7, 2013

Letter: On the new downtown hotel

ENID, Okla. — As an organization vested with the interest of preserving, maintaining and improving the atmosphere and built environment of downtown Enid, we are excited for the possibilities a hotel brings to our downtown community.

When the city of Enid and LodgeWell announced the Kress facade would be saved and incorporated into the new hotel, we were happy to know they were considering how the hotel would affect its surroundings.

The strategy seemed to incorporate two points, design and economic restructuring, of Main Street’s four-point approach to revitalization.

After it was recently announced that saving the Kress facade would be cost-prohibitive, we immediately started looking for more information.

We have contacted city officials and commissioners in order to better understand the factors that went into this decision as well as voiced our concern for how it will impact the streetscape.

With the responses we’ve received, we believe saving the Kress may be a costly decision, both now and in the future, as it may continually demand a great amount of maintenance. Because of this, we support the city of Enid in whatever decision it ultimately makes regarding the future of the Kress building.

Maintaining or improving the urban fabric of our downtown is extremely important to us. It a source of pride and a sense of place for residents, it is a major factor in how visitors will perceive Enid, and will directly affect their experience while here.

While we currently are unaware of any designs presented to the public for the corner of Maine and Independence that do not incorporate the Kress facade, we would like to meet with city of Enid and LodgeWell to work together to ensure the success of the hotel’s design and of downtown Enid.

We remain excited to see how the hotel can both tangibly and intangibly affect its urban setting.

On behalf of the Main Street Enid Board of Directors,

John Arend

president

Main Street Enid

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