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Apparent quick trigger on hotel plan

It comes as little surprise that the Warren City Council is poised to stop development of a downtown hotel next week.

Staff have been working with a developer out of St. Marys for three years on a proposal that would have brought a Cobblestone Inn & Suites to the riverfront at the expense of Breeze Point Landing.

Even though the project has been discussed for years, lack of community support made one think it was not a matter of if, but when the City Council would end the hotel development talks.

Putting an end to the hotel project may not be the best course of action. A community that stays stagnant will not grow — and taking the hotel off the table entirely may not be the best action despite the community’s opposition. We’re not saying build or not build. Instead, we’re saying the community should keep its options open.

The real question to be decided is if the site isn’t going to be a hotel, then what should it be?

Warren needs to add to its tax base in order to keep city taxes in check and afford to pay for city services that people have come to rely on. Top-notch police and fire protection doesn’t come cheaply.

Putting an end to hotel discussions places a bit of pressure on the Trestle to Trestle Task Force, which is working on an inventory of properties for current usage, vacancy and availability.

A prioritized list of redevelopment needs will be established which considers what new businesses are required/desired within the community and where within the footprint would that new business best be located.

That pressure, though, is slight compared to the pressure our community has put on itself. The people spoke loud and clear about the Breeze Point Landing hotel. What do they want to see in its place?

They need to speak up about that, too, by engaging with the task force as it undertakes its work.

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