Boise Parks announced today the water is on in the toilets and drinking fountains within the city parks, signaling another season of recreation and relaxation.
It also marks yet another year the City has refused to allow the citizens who own the Boise Depot to enter the historic structure–unless they pony up close to a grand in cash to rent the place.
Nearly 10 years ago there was a huge push to “Save The Depot.” Citizens purchased bricks with the names of loved ones–or their own names–as a fund raiser. Past mayors used the airwaves to get free face time in the name of “save the depot.”
As soon as we saved it, it was locked up tight as a drum. The GUARDIAN has a history of fighting for public access at the Depot. So far we have lost the battle. The general theme has always been, “We are planning to open it this summer,” but it never happens. To blunt critics they opened it for two hours a week on Monday evenings–or some such foolishness.
We think the Depot is a great venue. If taxes need to be raised to keep it open, then get ‘er done and share this place with the tourists who come here each summer.
Earlier this month the GUARDIAN was at Cape Hatteras where folks gladly pay $6 to climb the light house. Our Depot is every bit as stunning and we think the view is easily worth a couple of bucks.
The Astoria Column is another attraction we should try to emulate (that’s “copy” for you non-library types).
The GUARDIAN will gladly chair a public meeting at the Depot to bring together the players who can open the place by Memorial Day weekend.
–PARKS needs direction from Team Dave and the City Council to get out of the catering business and become a public service venue at the Depot.
–Ada County Highway District will probably put up some direction signs so motorists can get to and from the Depot off Vista and Capitol Blvd. It wouldn’t take much to explain, but the traffic pattern is confusion.
–The Visitor’s and Convention Bureau should have space in the Depot on a daily basis to direct tourists to motels and the sights of our fair city. Perfect location since there is already parking.
Between their volunteers and the people the city can recruit, the Depot will be a real tourist gem instead of a diamond in the rough.
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