The Carmel Redevelopment Commission recently issued a Request for Proposals for the former PNC Bank property at Range Line Road and Main Street, now known as Lot One. This corner was the original city center in 1837, and it has been a spark in the rebirth of Main Street, hosting a large number of gatherings and events.
I became concerned when I reviewed the RFP because it doesn’t require any public space, only a small setback for the Rotary Clock. This prompted me to meet with several Main Street business owners, who recounted conversations with the administration about a public plaza at the site. Numerous local residents also have called for green space.
I had the opportunity to raise these concerns with Mayor (Jim) Brainard, who later told Current in Carmel that the public would have input on the submitted proposals. While this is encouraging, it’s still not enough. Private developers will never include public space unless it’s required in their proposals.
Further, the city went to the trouble of purchasing the property and should be working in the best interests of the public, not private developers. If you agree this historic corner should include a substantial public plaza, make sure to voice your opinion to the mayor and CRC.
Dr. Tim Hannon, at-large candidate for Carmel City Council