But I'm also a realist ...
When you drive into the village of Bland, you come upon a century-old building - the old jail - now abandoned, and your heart will speak to you, asking that something be done to save it. To renovate it. Before it's too late.
But if you take a second look, a closer look, an impartial look, you'll come to the realization that it is already too late; that it's nothing more than a pile of bricks waiting to happen. The old Bland County jail is in an advanced state of disrepair and is structurally unsound (to this untrained eye). That's why, I think, sober heads need to get together and do the right thing. The right thing being to put it out of its misery.
Unfortunately other residents have other ideas:
County to decide fate of old jailA museum. A craft shop. A café. How neat?
By Wayne Quessenberry, Bland County Messenger
The fate of the old Bland County jailhouse will be determined by the Board of Supervisors during budget workshops in April and May. Options of selling the building or dismantling it will be reviewed.
At last week’s board meeting, County Administrator Jonathan D. Sweet informed the supervisors of an unnamed person’s wishes to use the building for various projects. Among the possibilities, he said, are a museum with crafters doing onsite demonstrations, a coffeehouse or café and an open deck at the rear of the building facing the post office as a farmers’ market. (link)
Then reality sets in:
"In 2000, contractors estimated it would cost $370,000 to remodel the old jail building."
Uhhh. An expensive coffee shop, I think. Beyond that, we're looking at a price tag of $370,000 and I still wouldn't go inside for fear that the building would come down around me.
A better idea: Sell the very old - and marketable - bricks by the piece. And be done with it.
Besides, we already have a coffee shop. We affectionately call it Subway.