l moved to La Crosse three years ago from Rochester and have come to love La Crosse. l am especially fond of Riverside Park.
The La Crosse Tribune featured a graphic conception of the expanded La Crosse Center on the front page (Jan. 18). It looks like a big ice shelf. This big white projection appears to cover a significant portion of Riverside Park. And, why is this? In the Tribune story about the project, La Crosse Center Board member Jessica Olson stated, "As far as the overall look and impact to the city, I believe a well-designed expansion toward the west, toward our park is the best way forward in terms of the aesthetic impact to the downtown and our community."
l would like to ask, "How is this big white ice shelf aesthetic?” ln 1908, the city of La Crosse had the foresight to hire John Nolen a well-known American landscape architect, to design Riverside Park.
Nolen felt strongly that "simple recreation in the open air amid beautiful surroundings contributes to physical and moral health, to a saner and happier life...” Riverside Park does this for our community.
I understand that a newly renovated and bigger Civic Center has the potential to earn money and expand markets for the city of La Crosse, but please reconsider the design and choose to keep Riverside Park as John Nolen intended and as the people of La Crosse want to keep it.
Nancy Davidson, La Crosse
Editor's note: Here's the reply from La Crosse Center General Manager Art Fahey: "The white diagram that was published was not a finished concept. It was a rendering that the architects use to illustrate the program space being considered. Future designs will reflect color, texture and artwork that will work well within the context of the downtown neighborhood. In addition, great care is being taken to avoid interfering with the use of the park. The new structure will be designed to enhance the park, add functionality and have a positive impact."