Polls, police and historic contention mark November's Armory Park meeting

White-knuckle elections, rampant graffiti, and a revamped “welcome-to-the-‘hood” program were among other sizzling topics at November’s Armory Park Neighborhood Association meeting.

Officer Jeff Glesinger of the Tucson Police Department also dished up a rundown of recent crime incidents, including the flotilla of cruisers appearing earlier this month at the beloved Bel Air apartments on the corner of 18th Street and 2nd Avenue. According to Glesinger, the incident involved an argument between drunken residents of the complex, which has suffered its share of management problems in recent years.

The officer also noted an obvious uptick in graffiti around the neighborhood, describing most of it as gang-related. He suggested reporting tagging incidents to TPD’s non-emergency number, and APNA president John Burr recommended photographing the graffiti before removing it, so the images can be added to police files.

On a bright note, Glesinger reported a decline in bicycle thefts, due perhaps to a possibility that all the nice but poorly secured bikes have already been stolen.

As for the chopper hovering over Armory Park a few days back, Glesinger said the flight resulted from a call by one resident concerned that a burglary was underway at his or her home. It turns out that no such burglary was occurring. And the resident happened to be in the hospital at the time of the call.

In polling news, a somewhat sparse crowd elected new members to the association board for 2013. Current member and secretary Grant Wille moved up to the president’s position. Another current member, Jack McLain, will settle into the vice president’s slot. New board members include Nate Wade and Marty Esparza.

We had a brief discussion of the annual Armory Park Home Tour, happening this Sunday from 12:20 to 4:30 p.m.. The tour will raise funds to feed hungry folks through our very own Neighbors Feeding Neighbors program.  (More information is available at http://armoryparktucson.net/uncategorized/eclectic-meets-historic-at-armory-park-tour-2013/)

There was also talk about traffic—particularly the steady flow along South Fourth Avenue–and a chat about clarifying the difference between the Armory Park Neighborhood Association and the Armory Park Historic Zone Advisory Board. Indeed, they are very separate entities, connected only by the fact some members serve on both.

But at its heart, this discussion boils down to informing Armory Park newcomers to from the outset about the historic construction and renovation guidelines they must follow. This could go far to avoid the teeth-gnashing that sometimes flares at historic advisory board meetings, and leaves bite marks on all sides.

The neighborhood association hopes these disputes don’t turn newcomers away from getting involved with terrific Armory Park programs, from Neighbors Feeding Neighbors to our new tool-loaning library.

It’s all about community. And community doesn’t get more basic than caring about the folks right next door.
ap tour

Don’t curb your enthusiasm.  Be sure to attend this year’s Armory Park Historic Home Tour extravaganza!

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