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Editorial: Beautification

Friday, June 17, 2011

Southeast Missouri is a beautiful place to live.

We have rolling hills, fertile fields, rivers and streams. Our towns, at least most of them, are quaint. We have nice schools and courthouses and clean parks. The good majority of people who live and work in Southeast Missouri understand and appreciate the aesthetics of our towns and rural areas. But there are some, unfortunately, who do not.

Some don't care to let buildings fall to ruin, to allow weeds to overcome lots and showcase their trash for everyone to see. Caring for one's property for beautification sake is one thing; keeping minimum standards for people to live is even more important. Just as tenants have responsibilities to landlords, so, too, do landlords have an obligation to their tenants.

Scott City is weighing the options on how to handle property nuisances and inspections. Since June 2010, the city has sent two dozen notices to building owners for not complying with the city's ordinances. All but one owner has complied.

Sometimes renters live in unsafe conditions. Scott City is looking into doing inspections before renters can occupy a building. Cape Girardeau is working on a rental inspection program that would require landlords to pay for annual licenses, which would subject a landlord's property to routine inspections.

In his monthly column in the Southeast Missourian, Cape Girardeau Mayor Harry Rediger wrote about the city being on a heightened mission to identify "any and all nuisance properties and enforce our current ordinances." In the column, he gave some sound advice.

"First, to all property owners: Assess your property and determine if it meets and/or exceeds your standards and your neighbor's standards," he wrote. "If you determine that it does not, make plans for improvement."

First and foremost, it's important for people to be safe; the city has an obligation to enforce laws for public safety. Secondly, it's important to be good custodians of our property and our neighborhoods. Most of what's being discussed is fairly common sense.

What tack the city should take in controlling some of these issues is debatable.

What's not debatable is that we all have a role to play in keeping our towns and our properties attractive. Some properties can't be improved without major investments, and we understand economic challenges. But there's so much that can be done with just a little bit of elbow grease and a few cans of paint.

Let's get to it, shall we?


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I very much agree with everything that was said above and would like to add, why couldn't the city of Cape encourage the owners of buildings on Broadway to paint their buildings? As said above, what a difference a few cans of paint and some elbow grease can make. Most of the buildings on Broadway and Main St., too, for that matter, are appalling! If we want to beautify our town and especially to leave a good impression with people who will be coming in to visit the new casino, why couldn't the city offer to buy paint for these buildings and then work with the owners to get the job done!

-- Posted by burnedupgranny on Fri, Jun 17, 2011, at 8:08 PM

We've already lost half of Bloomfield Rd. How about not cutting down the trees on the last half of it?

http://www.capecentralhigh.com/cape-phot...

It's a lot easier to open a can of paint than it is to grow a 100-year-old tree.

-- Posted by ksteinhoff on Sat, Jun 18, 2011, at 8:04 AM

I totally agree with painting and sprucing up the building along Broadway and Main streets in Cape. As stated above a little paint goes a long way and will surely look better than they are now. Personally I love painted brick buildings. The old theatres on Broadway may be Historical buildings but they are ungodly and need much attention. Why can't the City make them fix these old building up? I have heard mention of putting in all new sidewalks on Broadway and also putting trees in as well. My question is Why? Do you want to replace the sidewalks in few years after the trees start pushing them up. Why not flower boxes instead? Why spend taxpayers dollars unnecessarily? Spend it like it was your own money and it will go a lot further. The City can make our town look a lot better without spending unnecessarily.

-- Posted by MaMaT on Thu, Jun 23, 2011, at 11:11 PM


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