Much has been written about the proposed city hall complex in downtown Bountiful, mainly by those who are against it. I am not sure if their arguments hold much weight or validity, but here’s what I do know. Having a central gathering place, complete with a plaza and community center, and maybe a veteran’s monument, makes a lot of sense to me.
The current city hall is not the city center. It’s inconvenient for those who have difficulty climbing stairs, it has no lobby or “welcoming” area for visitors, and it doesn’t seem very functional. Having looked at what other cities have been doing with their new city halls, I also note that they all have community rooms that can be rented out for wedding receptions, family parties, etc. While we have private facilities in town that provide those types of centers, it’d be nice for the public sector to offer the same.
I’ve also heard through the grapevine that some citizens are discontent with the current city council. Funny, but when the last election was held for open seats in 2015, three of the current members ran unopposed. I think that either speaks to the quality and confidence the electorate had in them, or the apathy of Bountiful voters until some “hot” issue comes along.
Will a new city center improve the economics of downtown Bountiful? Most likely not much – because the merchants mix will stay the same and there’s not a lot of variety among the retailers on Main Street. But having a place for community events as well as an inviting city hall can’t hurt, particularly if the current site can be sold and/or redeveloped into something profitable.
The city has the money to do this, the leaders were elected to make choices on how to spend that money, and they should be trusted and allowed to. There has to be bigger issues to worry about than this one. Please, let’s give this a rest.
A happy Bountiful resident
(Name withheld by request)