I read your editorial ("Redefining 'blighted,'" Dec. 4) about the Americana at Brand and wanted to comment.
Ray Patel, who owns the Golden Key Hotel, has stood in the way of progress in Glendale for as long as I can remember. He has fought everything, and now he is standing in the way again.
He certainly has property rights, and he'll be paid a fair sum for his property if he chooses not to redevelop it. He says he thinks the city would not be interested in his plans, but to date I've never seen him do anything to try and improve that property.
The city has done an excellent job redeveloping downtown, and they should keep going. If someone like Rick Caruso wants to invest even more in Glendale, I say bring it on. Let's be fair to the current property owners, but let's not let them continue to stand in the way of improving Glendale.
Council members step up for Christmas event
On Dec. 4, our merchants association held its 10th annual Christmas event. This spectacular event was attended by more than 1,000 people, and Santa bags and candy canes to 400 youngsters were handed out.
Our thanks to Mayor Ara Najarian, assistant to the city manager John Takhtalian, and Ken Hitts, a deputy director for development services, for addressing the hiccup with our permit.
In attendance was City Councilwoman Laura Friedman, who was gracious enough to step out from the crowd and speak to the people in attendance. This is truly appreciated by the community whenever anyone from the City Council appears. Development Services Director Philip Lanzafame also attended.
Our event was a big hit, and the only problem we had was crowd control, but Glendale police officers quickly erected tape and delineators and the crowd moved onto the walkway and out of the street.
Kabob House, located on the corner of Palmer and Adams, provided food for this free event.
Fortunately, the weather held for us. Our sincere thanks to everyone involved for a great event and happy holiday.
Editor's note: Cianfrini is president of the Adams Square Merchants Assn.