How dispiriting to read of a proposed development on Langdon Street in Madison. It's yet another monstrous, uninspired, overpriced eyesore being considered for the campus and Downtown area -- an event that seems to occur on a weekly basis. One would think that the (many) existing examples of this architectural genre would be enough to dissuade more, but apparently not.
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Not long ago, I walked past the now vacant lot and imagined the unimaginable (at least in Madison): a serene little tree-filled space instead of a multi-story paean to excess -- in everything but taste. Instead of carping about insignificant details -- like the amount of metal panel siding or the number of parking spaces -- try this little mind game:
Look at a photo of the 1960s-vintage building that used to stand there and put it side-by-side with a rendering of the proposed building. Then ask yourself this question: What is gained?
Gary L. Kriewald, Madison