A Better Region 8: Do something with the former Citizens Bank building

There's been a true revival in downtown Jonesboro over the last few years.  Events like Alive After 5, The Downtown Bar-B-Que Festival and Pack Pride weekends compliment the great local restaurants and shopping.  When my friends come to Jonesboro, I can't wait to bring them downtown and let them see the charm for themselves.

Except for one building.  I seriously do my best to shield their eyes when it comes to the former Citizens Bank building.

Last week during windy conditions, the former Citizens Bank building had a large glass window break out and spill onto the street. The city had to clean it up and even though the actual cost was probably not much money, it's still tax dollars that were used to clean it up.  Now, a board covers the hole at street level.  An ugly building, that nobody cares for, now even uglier and costing the city money.

Jonesboro Mayor Harold Perrin announced that he is making it a priority to find an investor who will revive the building in 2017. I commend him for that.  But I don't think reviving the building is the answer.  I think it will serve downtown to do something more drastic.  I say find an investor who will make it their priority to tear that money pit down and start over. The possibilities are endless. We need something that adds to the charm, brings business and doesn't look at all like the current building.

Accepting that sometimes extreme measures are needed for growth makes this A Better Region 8.

- Chris Conroy, KAIT VP & General Manager

Copyright 2017 KAIT. All rights reserved.

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