Group asks for input on canal village

Published Jul 17, 2017 at 4:00pm

What should the future be for the Erie Canal Village?

Rome Main Streets Alliance wants the public to take a survey the answer that question.

The group is hosting another of its Rome Speaks town hall-style meetings with that as the topic at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, July 25 at the Rome Historical Society, 200 Church St.

In preparation for that, the group has posted a survey on its website at www.romemainstreets.org/surveys.

The Village has been languishing in inactivity the past two years, having not opened either year after the private owner hired a management firm to run it.

Now the city is working to alienate part of the land — the far edge of the parking lot — to host the Humane Society of Rome’s new headquarters.

“The main reason we’re doing this is we want to really touch on the fact that this is going to cost a great deal of money and we get so many people on both sides of the fence same why don’t we take it back and then we have so many people saying, ‘God we don’t want it we don’t want the expense,’” said Alliance Executive Director Michael Brown.

“We need to explain to the community exactly what’s at stake and let the community make an informed decision based on available information. That’s the purpose of the survey and the purpose of the Town Hall meeting,” Brown added.

The meeting will focus mostly on the re-use of part of what is called the Fort Bull site for the Humane Society.

The survey’s introduction states: “At Rome Main Streets, historic preservation is a key focus of our mission. We are very aware of the ongoing community interest and frustration over the Erie Canal Village and, in preparation for our town hall meeting on the subject, are offering the public this opportunity to weigh in on the topic.”

The goal is to have survey results available as part of the discussion at the July 25 event.