• 46°

Owners of history should step up

Luke 12:48 lays it out pretty simply. “For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required …”

When it comes to Selma, through all of our warts, we have been given quite a lot and therefore much should be required of us.

One of the assets our economic and city leaders regularly promote is the architectural history that is so prominent throughout Selma.

It seems now, that the city and other groups, are investing millions of capital into the redevelopment and renovation of Selma’s historic downtown, the attention — or lack thereof — that the owners of iconic buildings and structures are under more scrutiny than ever to ensure their buildings are kept in good condition.

Over the past weeks, we have seen and heard plenty written and said about two buildings in particular the Teppers Building and the old YMCA building both located on Broad Street.

These buildings are icons and both are in different stages or disrepair and the situations of ownership appear to be completely different.

In the case involving the old YMCA, owner Tom Bolton, is seeking someone — anyone — to take ownership and responsibility of a building that may be moments from falling down on itself.

In the other case, involving the Teppers Building, owners have said they want to work on the building, but their actions have shown otherwise. They have recently told city leaders they “want to begin work” in the spring.

As it relates to the old YMCA building, nearly everyone hopes the building can be saved. But what everyone can agree on is that a ultimate decision is long overdue and owners and city leaders need to stop talking and take action.

As for the Teppers Building, let’s hope the building’s owner lives up to this promise and does begin work on restoring the iconic structure.

If they don’t, let’s hope the building doesn’t wait as long as they did with the old YMCA to take appropriate action.

For these owners, they need to understand they are blessed to be the owners of history. They have been given much, now much is expected of them.