In appreciation for ......?
Former Mayor Stan Leach recently had a plaque dedicated to his work as mayor. It's located near the fountain at Bass St. Landing and represents the gratitude of those who made or stand to make a bundle on the work. Meanwhile, Leach leaves a city in deep debt and facing very difficult cuts in services.
IN RECOGNITION & APPRECIATIONThanks for the public/private stuff Stan, and my banker thanks you too.
This tribute to Moline Mayor Stan Leach recognizes over 20 years of service to the community and his leadership in the revitalization of Moline's historic downtown.
His continued support of Renew Moline and the public-private partnership helped turn a riverfront once called Moline's backdoor into a flourishing front door that is the pride of the city.
The sculptures, depicting children fishing in the Tom Sawyer/Huck Finn era, reflect his vision for this former riverboat landing and his love of education, history, and the river.
MAYOR STAN LEACH
Mayor of Moline 1993 - 2005
Dedicated November 17, 2005
So far, this "flourishing front door" looks a lot like a group of high-end businesses and expensive residential projects occupying all the prime riverfront property in downtown.
There's no easy public access, or even a view, of the river in any of the development around Bass St. Landing. Huck Finn and Tom Sawyer wouldn't know what the hell happened with Leach's "vision" for the riverfront. Leach's love of education, as evidenced by his several years of teaching high-schoolers how to make copper and silver trinkets if they decided to show up for class, and his love of history, reflected in the fact that there's not a shred of anything reflecting Moline's river history in it's downtown development aside from the self-erected shrines to Deere & Company's history and the fact that the expensive signage and decorations feature a paddlewheel and a ship's wheel, must have gotten lost somewhere along the way.
After decades of decline and stagnation, it is nice to see new buildings, new development, and hopefully, new life for downtown Moline.
But the fact remains that Moline has always had a remarkably large amount of money for downtown development compared to other Quad City towns, yet they couldn't muster anything until the past few years, and remarkably ended up in deep debt.
While public/private partnerships aren't inherently bad or undesirable, the fact that this development relied on it too heavily, in my opinion, is reflected in it's rather souless character and the fact that the general public seems to have been an afterthought in the planning. That's a shame.
Should all Moline residents share the gratitude expressed by the plaque? What do you think?
Note: I just spotted and corrected a rather embarassing typo. I'd written that there was "no easy pubic access". I regret, and am amused by, the error.