Recent council decisions have been quite disappointing. It seems that a certain “uglification” of Los Alamos has been going on over the last few years. To start with, all the vacant buildings in town. Smith’s should have been held to task for doing something with its old store; there should have been a clause in their contract to force a sale after 3 years or so. The Hilltop House continues to be an eyesore, as are the many other vacant buildings and storefronts. Council demolished the green strip on Central to put in a bank/credit union. Why this instead of maybe asking/helping them to buy and refurbish the old McDonald’s? Meanwhile, Council is now getting into the real estate business, buying what seem as already marketable properties, instead of merely assisting the redeveloping of what’s already there.
And now the latest atrocity is the lighting on East Road and the roundabout, which NMDOT said was done by Council decision. It is overkill, much too harsh and ugly. As you drive in, it seems to say “High crime district”. It’s way too bright, looks like stadium lighting, and the poles are not attractive in the least, looking more like what you see on an interstate highway. These are certainly counter to the Dark Skies concept that Council is contemplating (kudos on that). I would suggest replacing them with attractive village-type poles, like on Central, with less bright lamps, and/or perhaps staggered every other one, right and left, as on west Trinity.
Let’s hope the new East Road roadway gets some nice landscaping, more than just boulders. We have a pretty town – let’s keep it that way.