Community should embrace a realistic plan for Windsor.
When it comes to a downtown landmark, folks with the Finney County Preservation Alliance share an important goal.
They want to see new life in the historic structure that once housed the Windsor Hotel.
As part of that quest, the preservation alliance has pursued different possibilities — to include returning it to its former glory as a hotel.
For various reasons — not the least of which would be cost — no developer has stepped forward with a realistic plan to open a hotel in the Windsor.
On the other hand, a recent proposal to turn the Windsor into a mixed-use development with 23 apartments for senior citizens offered real hope of seeing the property undergo a renovation it desperately needs.
But GC Windsor Developers, LLC, was not granted the senior housing tax credits it sought to proceed with the estimated $15 million development plan.
Timing didn't help. With future tax credits in limbo, more proposals were submitted and the Windsor project fell short.
The setback pleased some local residents who'd rather see the Windsor as a hotel. While their interest in saving the local treasure is commendable, those who'd oppose any other kind of development have to acknowledge that new motels are being planned around the community, yet no developer seems interested in targeting the Windsor in such a way.
Every Windsor supporter at least should agree that something needs to happen with the building, and soon. While the preservation alliance continues to pursue grants and other ways to address issues, deterioration of the empty building will continue.
The senior housing proposal offered a rare and exciting opportunity to revitalize the structure, while maintaining its historic charm.
And the building does indeed have potential. Anyone interested in seeing that for themselves should take advantage of guided Windsor tours from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday.
The goal for all should be to see the Windsor remain part of the downtown Garden City landscape. If that means a new purpose — one that also helps generate more traffic downtown — it makes sense to embrace a viable plan for the Windsor and move forward.