History Fades...........

I live in the midwest. There are a lot of staid and gothic buildings that still stand in many a small midwest towns--most are empty, sitting and staring out unto avenues that have past them by on their way to the big faceless boxes that now lay claim to lower prices...you'll be happy you came here first... and all the other rhetoric that is shouted at you from the airwaves and other media.
Several years ago I ventured to Detroit, Michigan. It was just a quirk on a summer afternoon. Much has been written about the city, its people, its decline.
As I drove in on old U.S. 12 the Michigan Central Station looms or should I say booms into veiw, this is no way of missing it. Whether or not you are a conniseur of transportation does not matter here what matters is the immensity of standing face to face with this structure. 17 stories tall, over a million bricks, sitting on a huge concrete slab and above where salt was mined. Inside, a vaulted ceiling, huge columns and everywhere you look destruction and light. I don't know how it was done but every window in that tower part was busted out. Charlie Chaplin passed through here once and so did a few Presidents and a few movers and shakers of the Twentieth Century, all of that is in the rubble that strewn the floor. Graffitti now adorns everything and what pieces are left are slowly decaying. It has been said that in its present state that building could stand another 100 years, it was built in 1914.
Through Blizzards, storms, rain, and wind it stands as a silent guardian over the city. Because of engineering reasons and such--tunnels to Winsor are located here, it stands two miles outside of city downtown proper. There are no rivals close to it.
We revere in the old buildings in Europe but yet here ours are just abandonded or torn down, we have no sense of of our past.
There are group of wonderfully dedicated volunteers to care for it but they can only do so much. We are in such a haste to tear down and put up, often with results that are just plain dubious. America at a time of past glory. We have encumbered ourselves in so much bullcrap and red tape now that any effort to save, repurpose, or reuse just falls upon deaf ears.
The europeans surely must surely snicker at us. I grew up in New Jersey only a short distance from New York City, often as a youngster my Parents took me To Pennsylvania Station. New York lacks a world class train station---Grand Central is Commuter only. Been to London, Paris, Rome, Milan, or Amsterdam? Even if there was just only service to Washington and thank goodness that idea was eliminated, shouldn't New York be worthy of a world class transport center?
In Detroit, there are jobs that need to be done, people need to work, why is it that we can't put these two halves of the equation together? Train station, office building, international trade building, goverment offices, lofts or how about entertainment destination?! Casino. Surely this building is a big as the Donalds ego, so why not? Again bullcrap and red tape, we do it to ourselves and I'm tired of the excuses, the building will outlive us all.
paddytram paddytram
56-60, M
Nov 29, 2012