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Odom proposes capital L

BY J. Andrew Curliss, Sarah Lindenfeld Hall
02/08/2003
by J. Andrew Curliss, Sarah Lindenfeld Hall on 2/8/03.

After the convention center study committee narrowed its picks
Wednesday for a new center's location to three downtown Raleigh
sites, a good number of people hung around and studied a large
map of the central city. They mulled the choices. Tossed around
some ideas.
Then City Council member John Odom separated the crowd and
took over.
He wasn't in favor of the third site choice, a large tract on
the western edge of downtown next to some railroad tracks in a
warehouse district. The other two still in the mix -- both just
west of the existing center -- were fine.
But Odom wants something creative. Maybe it would be good to
fashion some combination of the two sites to the west into a
third choice, he said. Raleigh does not need a long box of a
convention center. Something L-shaped would work, he told the
gathering.
Ed Jones, a businessman and member of the study committee, was
listening and nodding.
"Yeah, John, you want something big and different," Jones
said. "Like the Sydney Opera House."
Odom responded: "I've never seen the Sydney Opera House. But
if it's L-shaped, then I'm for it."
SPEAKING OF ODOM: Count Bruce Spader as another candidate
running to replace Odom, who has served on the council for a
decade.
Spader ran against Odom for the District B seat in 2001,
winning nearly 23 percent of the vote.
Since then, Spader has been appointed to city committees.
Spader, a leader in the Brentwood neighborhood, said he plans to
run a grass-roots campaign.
"I am going to put the question to the active voters in
District B whether or not they want me sitting down there or
not," he said.
John Knox, a former interim police chief; Jessie Taliaferro, a
Planning Commission member; and Jeff Perkinson, a member of a
city committee working to create a land-use plan for a section of
Five Points, also have said they are considering a run for the
seat, which represents an area that stretches from neighborhoods
inside Raleigh's Beltline to Northeast Raleigh.
Voters go to the polls Oct. 7.
POLITICAL TRAIL
- ROY COOPER, North Carolina's attorney general, is scheduled
to speak to the Wake County Democratic Men at 6 p.m. Monday at
Griffin's Restaurant, 1604 N. Market Drive in Raleigh.
- DONNIE HARRISON, the new Wake County sheriff, will speak to
Wake County Young Republicans at 7 p.m. Monday at Greenshields
Brewery & Pub, 214 E. Martin St. in downtown Raleigh.
- DAN GERLACH, Gov. Mike Easley's senior policy adviser for
fiscal affairs, will speak about the budget situation to the Wake
County chapter of Citizens for a Sound Economy at 7 p.m. Thursday
at N.C. State University's Jane S. McKimmon Center, corner of
Western Boulevard and Gorman Street.