Should it be home to a new hydro-powered trolley?
Or Universal Studios East?
Or Lewiston Middle School?
Just some of your ideas.
With Bates Mill No. 5's future in flux, two weeks ago the Sun Journal asked readers for ideas on what ought to become of the building and the land beneath it. The fate of the almost 100-year-old, city-owned mill is once again uncertain after a referendum earlier this month that would have approved a casino for the spot failed to win statewide support.
More than 70 readers, ages 10 to 81, sent in suggestions: Some amazingly creative, some perfect in their simplicity, only one illegal (brothel, anyone?) and one too colorful to print (think angry political potshot). We intended to winnow the suggestions down to 12, but, we couldn't: Too many ideas were good — or downright interesting. For space reasons and ease in voting, we pared down duplicates, giving credit to first responders. Ideas for a science center, fun park, indoor yard sale and business incubator were popular. We edited the rest for clarity and space. (Whether credited or not, many thanks to everyone who sent in a suggestion.)
Now it's up to you.
Please pick your five favorites among the list of 38. We'll take the top vote-getters to a panel of economic development experts for their thoughts: Could that work here? Why or why not?
After that? Well, all good ideas start with a dream. As soon as we hear about plans to make one of the ideas a reality, we'll let you know.
Votes are due by Dec. 7.