Value of downtown housing

Dear Editor:I am writing in response to Lawrence Christon's letter titled "Hunger for Arts Scene" (Letters to the Editor, 12/11/09) It seems to me that he makes several valuable points regarding the arts scene or lack of any real entertainment value in the downtown area. How the Downey City Council can justify turning the old Avenue Theatre into low-cost housing really baffles the mind. How do you justify turning a seemingly commercial area into a housing district? It would seem to me that if the Council was serious about improving the downtown area and improving Downey as a whole, then it would be looking at ways of bringing businesses into the downtown area that would better reflect Downey's support for the arts while improving foot traffic in the area. An independent theater showing foreign films would be a great place to start in my opinion. How about a downtown area that competes with the likes of Old Town Pasadena? Restaurants with alfresco dining, street vendors and music on weekends would surely bring in more foot traffic. I believe this would be more beneficial to the community as a whole than low-income housing in the middle of downtown Downey. It really boggles the mind every time I read another article about the city's proposed use of land in the downtown area. I really wonder how this adds any value to Downey as a whole and how it is going to help improve the quality of life for Downey residents, not to mention what it is going to do to property values. The Downey City Council is at a very crucial "fork in the proverbial road" at this time. They have the opportunity to either improve our great city or change it in a way that many residents will regret. I truly hope our new mayor and all council members will consider this decision very carefully before any decision is made. - Moises Alonso, Downey

********** Published: December 18, 2009 - Volume 8 - Issue 35