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A new hope 

Two grassroots preservationist organizations in San Luis Obispo are hoping the new City Council will be sympathetic to their concerns. The new board, which has Jan Marx and John Ashbaugh replacing Christine Mulholland and Paul Brown, will be sworn in Dec. 1.

Members of Save Mitchell Park, a group that opposes paving a section of the downtown park to create 11 new parking spaces for the senior center, as well as Save Our Downtown, a group that emerged to oppose several large buildings proposed for the downtown area, are hopeful their causes will get welcome attention.

Jan Marx, councilmember-elect, has called on community members to re-assert their opposition to the Mitchell Park parking lot at a Nov. 18 council meeting. Despite the fact that the current council has already approved funding, many who oppose the project say that bids do not include engineering elements needed to protect a heritage tree.

In a letter to her supporters, Marx said she would work to reverse the controversial decision:

“Once sworn in, I plan to move that council reconsider and reverse the parking lot decision,” she wrote, adding “If there are three votes on the new council in favor of reversal, Mitchell Park and the heritage tree will be saved.”

Beyond Mitchell Park, the Save Our Downtown group has called on the community to attend a “visionary meeting” Nov. 15 at 9:30 a.m. at the SLO Library, with the stated goal of impressing on the new council members their “grassroots vision.” The group is planning to have several speakers with planning and architecture backgrounds.

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