A BUILDERS OPINION on Manzanita City Hall Project

By Vince Venezia
I would like to throw in my two cents worth about the proposed City Hall and respond to a letter posted on BBQ. But I’m not going to put you to sleep going over arguments you have heard 100 times.
Let’s do a little comparison. Say you bought a 1948 Buick and wanted to restore it. You get the engine rebuilt, new leather interior, brakes, tires, muffler, paint job, etc. When you are done, what do you have? It looks real nice but it’s still an OLD CAR. No disc brakes, no –anti-lock brakes, no airbags, no traction control, no engineered crumple zones, or many other safety features found on newer cars. Plus, you have spent way more than buying a new car. Ask anyone who has done a full auto restoration.


Restoring an old building can be much the same. You don’t really know until you get into it what all has to be done. I have been a carpenter/cabinet maker for 47 years and have gone on that ride a few times. Every time it ended up costing more and took longer than original estimates.
The author of the October letter made a few statements I’d like to respond to:
1. Regarding the city council: “They have attempted to marginalize the opinions of their fellow citizens that are different from their own.” That is exactly what many of those opposed to the project do and often quite rudely.
2. “They respond to hard questions with their own opinions rather than hard facts.” That sounds like an opinion to me, not a hard fact.
3. “The framing materials used in the school are far superior to anything that is available today.” Have you seen all the framing material? Granted, lumber then was probably milled from old growth trees and would have tighter grain, potentially some nice wood. But how much would be reusable? Old growth lumber can also twist, crack and rot.
4. “The Pine Grove School building is well designed and is more interesting than the new build design proposed by the city council.” Saying something is more interesting is an opinion, not a fact.
5. “It is in the same position on the lot as the proposed new building. The school building however is more attuned to the wind, sun and topography.” Again, more opinions.
It seems like some of those opposed can state their opinions as facts while those in favor cannot. Learn the facts and base your decision on facts, not opinions. Get the facts at https://ci.manzanita.or.us/project.html
Manzanita is a great town with a great community and it hurts me to see such a bitter divide. We are very lucky to live here. Please, let’s not behave like the federal government. We’re better than that.
Thank you.