(KCPW News) Former Salt Lake City Mayor Rocky Anderson blasts Mayor Ralph Becker's proposal to put a new public safety complex right next to the downtown library as preposterous and short-sighted. He says Library Square provides a world-class breathing space for residents, and putting a municipal building there makes no more sense than putting one in the middle of Liberty Park.
"This is a total betrayal of a several years public process that took place to determine what should be on Library Square," he told KCPW.
The city's other option is to put the building on the east side of 300 East, further away from the library. Anderson says that idea is slightly better, but still ruins the opportunity to develop a diverse array of housing, retail and restaurants in that space.
Supporters of putting the police headquarters next to the library say it will cut down on undesirable activity that occurs there, like public urination. Anderson says the library doesn't need a police building next door to crack down on crime.
"That is the dumbest reason imaginable for building a public safety building on that lot," he said. "If you need more policing, send over a police officer."
Anderson also says there's no reason whatsoever the police building needs to be close to city hall. We'll have a longer conversation with the former Salt Lake City mayor tomorrow morning at 11 on KCPW's Politics Up Close.