Thursday, November 11, 2010

Meeting to brainstorm best use of county land near Courthouse to be Nov. 14

HOUGHTON -- A meeting to brainstorm THE BEST USE of the two-block piece of land west of the Houghton County Courthouse will be held at 3 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 14, at the First United Methodist Church, 401 Quincy St., Hancock.

The lower half of this aerial photo shows the two-block piece of Houghton County land west of the County Courthouse in Houghton that had been proposed for a justice center on the November 2, 2010, ballot. County voters voted "no" on the proposal. The Pewabic community garden is in the center of the publicly owned piece of property. Click on photo for larger version. (Photo © 2010 and courtesy ADAM JOHNSON | brockit inc.)

"I'd like to call the project 'The County Common,' said organizer Carolyn Peterson. "I have a concept that there is a best use for this land, and I want people to come and work together with creative ideas."

Peterson said she had two main motives for inviting county residents to this brainstorming meeting:

1. to get something beautiful right at the center of Houghton County and

2. to restore people's faith in community action.

"We, the residents of Houghton County, already own this whole piece of property," Peterson noted. "What an incredible opportunity we have to do something creative with that space!"

Peterson was one of the community members instrumental in establishing the Pewabic community garden, which is at the center of this piece of property.

"I don't want to move the garden. I like the garden where it is," she said.

Peterson said the purpose of this meeting is to bring citizens together to plan something that meets the needs of the county officials (jail, office space) AND allows for an expanded community garden and a park, perhaps.

"We need a grass-roots effort to restore our faith in each other and local government's faith in us," Peterson said.

Anyone with questions about the meeting should call Carolyn Peterson at 482-4696.

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