Downtown Lawrence must weigh historic preservation benefits

As plans for Lawrence's future get underway, it's worth asking whether leaders have been focused too much on the town's historic past.



July 14, 2021 - 8:15 AM

Lawrence, Kansas

Important work to plan for downtown Lawrence’s future is underway. Local leaders as part of that effort should spend some time considering whether they’ve placed too much importance on its past.

Historic preservation has long been a foundational piece of downtown Lawrence’s success. It is clear that historic preservation will continue to play an important role in its future too. However, the city-hired consultants who have been studying downtown have remarked that elements of the city’s historic preservation strategy are holding downtown Lawrence back.

Such statements caused the majority of a downtown working group last week to bristle. They’re recommending that the City Commission remove such language from the plan.

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