Saturday, June 06, 2015


Guest column: St. Augustine's Flagler College takes much more than it gives
Posted: June 6, 2015 - 8:06pm

St. Augustine Record
A recent article in The Record made an effort to have us understand and empathize with Flagler College’s expansion plans. I do no want to see any expansion of this campus, especially in the city.

When the hotel became a college it was a delight. It was a small, ladies-only campus for about 200 students, Most of us were delighted. It did nothing to distort our lovely downtown, and it was not on a rampage to acquire and demolish lovely old homes that could not be replaced. The original intent of the campus has been totally skewed. Lawyers managed to accomplish that without any input from the citizens,

In my opinion, the campus has become a never-satisfied, tax-eroding cancer and I want to see it stopped.

The college owns property on State Road 207. Move there and work out some arrangement to use other fields on which to play. Every field in the county is not always being used.

There is no need to continue to gobble up our city properties and ruin the ambiance of the nation’s most unique city — the oldest continuously occupied city in the nation.

I was sickened when the college took over the FEC buildings. What a missed opportunity for the city to expand its tax base, instead of allowing such valuable property to become an dorm that costs city residents what could have been a healthy tax contribution to our much-needed funds.

Not only does Flagler College take as much from the city as it can, it also does almost nothing to give back to our wonderful community. What was a pleasant resting place for tourists on St. George Street has now been closed. Why?

There is no mention of free “thank you to the community” courses offered in the evenings.

How about insisting that the student autos use the garage. It’s not much of a walk for a young, healthy student.

Parking downtown is scarce. It should not be made worse by allowing students of a college that contributes no tax revenue to take up the spaces.

How about acquiring the old college properties at the end of King Street? That would allow ample land for buildings and parking. It was a campus, so zoning codes would most likely allow for a campus facility to be built there.

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