To The Daily Sun
As a native of Laconia, my Dad was a firefighter, working the various fire stations throughout the city from Water Street's Central Station to Lakeport and the tiny station at the Weirs. I remember being in the Lakeport station and looking up in the hose tower as a boy and also visiting upstairs in the recreation room overlooking what is now The Lake Opechee Inn.
As years went by and the vacant Lakeport station fell into disrepair, I often wondered what could be done with the unremarkable building.
I was encouraged when Lakeport Landing, after losing the bid on the building they had built on Union Avenue, looked to build their new showroom on the site of the old fire station.
I’m not sure why, but the City Council decided that the building could not be razed and that part of the brick building and a replica of the hose tower must remain. I can only imagine what these demands must have cost in architectural changes, as well as construction costs.
With the beautiful new showroom complete, it really is an aesthetic addition to the now revitalized Lakeport Square.
I cannot understand the need to put brick or faux brick on this tower, which, in its current understated presence, actually blends nicely with the rest of the building. In my opinion, making it stand out would be an eyesore and cause people to wonder what on earth it is for.
After this small business invested so much to make the building an attractive part of Lakeport, and put an unused city burden onto the tax base, I cannot understand what purpose the Council sees in mandating what seems to be a petty cause.
Perhaps we should save the time and legal fees and just thank Lakeport Landing for increasing their tax base to the city, which I can only imagine is an enormous annual amount.