Making downtown vibrant was always a tough task.
COVID made it harder.
Sealed office buildings where the windows don’t open? That makes going to work a super spreader event.
Do you think that we are ever going back to “normal”?
Will we ever go back to blowing out the candles on a birthday cake, or kissing the bride?
Will COVID ever stop mutating and evolving? We’re two years in, mostly vaccinated, and the ICU beds are still overflowing. New COVID variations aren’t even news anymore. New COVID variations are the new normal.
A recent study shows that over 45% of Americans have a comorbidities that could lead to complications from COVID. That number is probably higher for overweight, diabetic, El Paso.
Are we going to encourage El Pasoans to engage in the risky behavior necessary to create a “vibrant downtown”?
Or is this whole “vibrant downtown” thing a scam designed to fleece the taxpayers for the benefit of some developers? For all the public money we’ve spent, what benefits have we got? A Streetcar that runs three days a week for seven hours a day? A ballpark that’s dark for more than two hundred and fifty days a year?
A community that’s riven by dissent, and a City Government that’s oblivious to the needs and concerns of the majority of the citizens?
The “planners” aren’t concerned with the citizens, or the pandemic, or reality. They want us to use our imaginations, so they can use our tax dollars.
Imagination can only take us so far. Sooner or later, we’ll have to reckon with reality.