To the editor:
Let me get this right, the city government is now concerned that the Mark Center building may be a security risk to Alexandria? Duh. Wasnt this obvious to city leaders and staff when the project was proposed? After all, it was after 9/11 and the Oklahoma City bombing. Moreover, it was the very reason the Defense Department moved out of Crystal City. Evidently, the city did not understand what was happening in the world, just as they could not seem to see that the Washington Headquarters Services buildings at Mark Center would be a traffic nightmare.
And now this same group of people wants to determine how the Alexandria waterfront should be permanently changed through redevelopment. Unfortunately, in order to have effective planning you need to account for the future impact a project will have, i.e. security, and traffic problems. That is what planning is, after all: an understanding of the changes a project will bring to the community.
How can anyone in Alexandria have confidence in this staff and administration to oversee important decisions such as the waterfronts redevelopment? Unfortunately, this is what happens when you have no accountability. Until City Hall can demonstrate more competence, we should not allow this group to make these important decisions. To alter this failed planning dynamic, the citizens need to step up and say stop to our city government. If not, you can be certain we will have more of these unfortunate, half-baked decisions, which we will all come to regret.