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Letter of the Day: Sense of place

  • The Willis Tower, formerly the Sears Tower, is the centerpiece of the Chicago skyline, with Lake Michigan in the background. (Associated Press, 1996)

Sense of place

EDITOR: I just returned from Chicago. If you haven't visited this great American city, I urge you to do so. The vibrancy of the place was nurtured by stunning architecture, well-kept sidewalks, gardens, bicycle paths/rentals, interesting museums, shops and cafés. As a result, Chicago keeps and attracts vibrant and creative people.

All of my observations spurred me to consider my hometown of Santa Rosa. Clearly, it would be absurd to hold both places to the same level of amenities. However, I was left with this question: What is Santa Rosa doing to keep and attract people with high levels of creativity and vibrancy throughout a variety of demographics?

I have lived in Sonoma County for 41 years. I've seen Healdsburg, Graton and Petaluma transform into places of destination. In Santa Rosa, we have a solid start with the Prince Memorial Greenway. What happened to the blueprints I saw that had such great ideas for the Cannery area? Where are the movers and shakers, the visionaries who can shape our city?

I'm always rooting for my hometown. If we don't foster a “sense of place,” we will default to decay.

MARGUERITE FINN

Santa Rosa

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