Bringing The Blanch Back to Life
Nowadays, people are moving back into downtown areas because they crave authenticity, walkability, convenience, history and charm. Most importantly, they crave community. People want to live somewhere that feels authentic and has some soul. They want to work in the city limits and feel like they're part of a community. They want to be able to ditch the car on any given day and easily walk or bike to their destination. These experiences bring life back into downtown areas and create tight-knit communities.
Dale Tompkins from Church on The Way was kind enough to share his memories of Hotel Blanche with us, and his hope for a better downtown moving forward.
"The Blanche has been a part of my life since I was a small child. I can remember as a child going to the drug store located in the Blanche and sitting at the counter and getting an old-fashioned cherry coke from the fountain. This was a highlight for me each week over the summer."
"Honestly, until a few years ago I would have said that it was not important. However, I had an opportunity to travel to Europe and spend some time in London and Paris. Seeing the historical building in these two iconic cities reminded me that we have so few in Lake City. That opportunity taught me how little of our history has been persevered in our city. The Blanche is probably the best example of our town history still standing and it being brought back to life will allow future generations to see a piece of our founding history."
"The Blanche redevelopment project will be a great resource in attracting businesses back to downtown. One of the biggest problems in attracting businesses back downtown is the cost of developing the spaces into usable space. Having premium finished spaces to rent will allow newer businesses to move into downtown with little out of pocket expense to get the usable space their business needs."
Thanks to Dale for sharing his stories and passion for Downtown Lake City. We're excited and proud to be the catalyst for change in downtown and hope many more projects hop onboard to become the new social, economic, and cultural hubs of our great community.