Tucson Progressive

Pamela Powers Hannley, a progressive voice for Arizona

An Congress– Not?

If you follow downtown politics and development/non-development, you know that it has been a rocky road littered with bad real estate deals, broken dreams, and random glimmers of hope.

Last fall there was a big hullabaloo when downtown landlord and developer Scott Stiteler evicted 3 businesses (Tooley’s, Preen, and Metropolis Hair) and 4 galleries (Dinnerware, Firestone, Rocket, and Central Arts [above]) on Congress to make way for a 7000-square-foot sports bar owned by Mr. An of Sakura fame.

I’m sure, at the time, Stiteler thought that Mr. An would be a more solid tenant than these funky small businesses and galleries, but that Congress Street gallery row– coordinated for the most part by David Aguirre of Dinnerware Artspace– created a very popular art scene and drew large crowds downtown to view rotating exhibits (1,2,3,4, 5, 6, 7).

Construction– or destruction, actually– started in the spring. Walls were knocked down to make way for the glittering new sports bar. The Arizona Daily Star trumpeted Mr. An’s move downtown.

Now, construction appears to be stalled. Word on the street is that Stiteler is stuck with an empty shell with dirt floors, no tenants paying rent, and no Mr. An.

As Joni Mitchell sang, You don’t know what you got ’til it’s gone. You paved paradise and put up a parking lot..

Sept. 18, UPDATE: I received e-mails from Stiteler and Councilman Steve Kosachik on this story. According to Stiteler, construction and renovation inside structures on 200 block of Congress Street continues. He said that An and others are interested in the space but would not be more specific regarding future tenants. No time frame for completion was offered. Apparently, when the 1912 structures were gutted, they were found to be in rougher shape that anticipated. Watch for further developments on this story..


This entry was posted on September 16, 2010 by in downtown, music, Politics, Rio Nuevo, Tucson.

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The Tucson Progressive: Pamela Powers Hannley

I stand on the side of Love. I believe in kindness to all creatures on Earth and the inherent self-worth of all individuals--not just people who agree with me or look like me.

Widespread economic and social injustice prompted me to become a candidate for the Arizona House, representing Legislative District 9 in the 2016 election. My platform focuses on economic reforms to grow Arizona's economy, establish a state-based public bank, fix our infrastructure, fully fund public education, growlocal small businesses and community banks, and put people back to work at good-paying jobs. I also stand for equal rights, choice, and paycheck fairness for women. I am running as a progressive and running clean.

My day job is managing editor for the American Journal of Medicine, an academic medicine journal with a worldwide circulation. In addition, my husband and I co-direct Arizonans for a New Economy, Arizona's public banking initiative. I am a member of the national board of the Public Banking Institute, and I am co-chair of the Arizona Democratic Progressive Caucus, the largest caucus of the Arizona Democratic Party.

I am a published author, photographer, videographer, clay artist, mother, nana, and wife. I have a bachelor's degree in journalism from Ohio State University and a masters in public health from the University of Arizona. I grew up in Amherst, Ohio, but I have lived in Tucson, Arizona since 1981. I am a proud member of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Tucson and the Public Relations Society of America.

My Tucson Progressive blog and Facebook page feature large doses of liberal ideas, local, state, and national politics, and random bits of humor. I also blog at Blog for Arizona and the Huffington Post.

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