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On the issues, Hagerstown mayoral candidates

Rate the quality of downtown revitalization efforts over the past four years and what, if anything, needs to be done to improve

Rate the quality of downtown revitalization efforts over the past four years and what, if anything, needs to be done to improve

April 29, 2005

William Breichner, Democrat

Energizing the revitalization of downtown has been the completion of the university building and the adjoining university plaza.

Another very important undertaking is the Bowman project on South Potomac Street that is now under construction. In addition, the city is building the arts and entertainment parking deck.

Almost daily, we are meeting with potential investors who are looking for downtown buildings for redevelopment.

The recently created Hagerstown Neighborhood Development Partnership has acquired the Massey property on East Baltimore Street and are requesting proposals to provide new market rate housing.

Although we are pleased with the progress that has been made, we believe that we have a ways to go to reach our full potential. An important factor will be to promote and develop market rate and upscale housing in and around the perimeter of the downtown. Any success will require the develop a combination of housing and business enterprises.

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Richard "Dick" Trump, Republican

There has been some revitalization in the downtown however; I rate the effort as a "C." As Mayor, with the help of the Vision for Hagerstown Team, we will offer incentives for retail and commercial business to locate in the downtown. We will offer property tax breaks, negotiate design approvals, as well as empower our economic development office to recruit new business.

However, to support business we will work with redevelopment offices, developers and builders to make workforce housing a reality in the downtown. We have a plan for "work and live" homeowner incentives including grants and competitive mortgages for teachers, police, firefighters and other workers. The downtown will be revitalized, and receive an "A+" rating, when there is a thriving business center and people living in the downtown supporting that center. The Team and I will work to get 'er done.

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