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Editorial Response

Editor:

I would like to respond to your December 5 Editorial “Prisoners of Penn Avenue.”

It seems that no matter how hard we try to build up our community, the paper finds something wrong.

The plans and designs for the Government Center have been available for the public review for well over a year, affording everyone the opportunity to offer constructive suggestions.  We also took comments at an April 2016 meeting when we voted on the project.  To criticize now and to have to consider costly adjustments is ludicrous.

The design of the Penn Avenue side was done with security in mind.  The National Center For State Courts was contacted and sent consultants to examine the site and our court system operation and then offer layout specifications.

The Judges’ Chambers are in these areas and must be secure.  We could not have them housed in a display window-type scenario.  The exiting floor was raised four feet and the small windows had to be installed higher for security reasons.  We did not design the project in a vacuum.

While The Globe is off the tax rolls, the annex is back on with the sale of the building to a private developer.  We are also saving the cost of leasing space in other structures for our various departments by creating a “one-stop shop” to do business.

This project is an investment in downtown Scranton.  When the Times had such an opportunity, it chose to locate its printing plant in Waverly.  If the paper decides to expand in the future, I hope it will be in Scranton.

I believe just the stature of this move and its operation will spur growth on both Wyoming and Penn Avenues.  Entry doors or no entry doors.

Thank you.

Commissioner Patrick M. O’Malley