Under ordinary circumstances, you would think that a headline anywhere that says "Cincinnati Gives Away Fountain Square" would be a hoax or some sort of joke headline.
I wish that this headline were some kind of hoax or joke but it is NOT. As it stands, seven members of City Council voted in an "emergency session" to put Foutain Square in the hands of a private entity, 3CDC.
As a part of this vote giving 3CDC there is also an ordinance which states that Fountain Square is now CLOSED from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. like a playground.
Appalling. And you still think I must be joking, right? As appalling as this may sound, I am not joking.
Jason Haap, commonly known as the Dean of Cincinnati has done two posts about this. Here are the links and they are must reads:
Is 3CDC Taking Over Fountain Square’s Permitting Procedure?
In this post The Dean explains that it looks like council was trying to hide this from the people of Cincinnati by passing this through in ONE DAY by calling it an emergency (see the Dean's reference to Councilman Jeff Berdings "Hurry Up Offense" here).
City of Cincinnati: Say Goodbye to Fountain Square
Here he shows how they actually did it and why the People of Cincinnati now not only have no say over Fountain Square (actually as of the last renovation, we didn't anway but at least the perception was there) and how we now don't even have access to Fountain Square during certain hours on pain of trespassing!
This affects us all and it's about time we let our leaders know that when we elect them it's to REPRESENT US not dictate to us and sell our public spaces to the highest bidder.