East Side History Madison’s Blog

By and for the East Side History Club, a project of the Goodman Community Center

Update on the “Old Sugar Castle” in Isthmus 7/5/12

Posted by eastsidehistorymadison on July 9, 2012

Photo by Craig Wilson, Kite Aerial Photography

The East Side History Club continues to follow development plans (or lack thereof) for the Garver Feed Mill, affectionately known on the East Side as the “Old Sugar Castle.”  An article by Isthmus writer Jay Rath, reporting on on his chat with Olbrich Botanical Gardens Director Roberta Sladky about current plans, appeared in the Isthmus issue of 7/5/12.

Rath reports that, “Madison is now seeking architects to work with Olbrich on a project to explore ways to meet the gardens’ current and future building space needs to better accommodate the public. A second, related proposal would stabilize the core of the Garver Feed Mill for use as a garden support and storage facility by both Olbrich and the Parks Division.”

The article goes on to say that, “Using the mill for public space at this point has already been ruled out by Olbrich. ‘We don’t see a safe way to get the public across the [adjacent] bike path and the railway tracks without an incredible amount of additional expenditure,” says Sladky.'”

Neighborhood residents find it hard to believe that public access is the real deal-breaker here; consider the traffic uses around Union South for an example of successful coexistence of public space, railroad tracks, and bicycle, pedestrian, and vehicular traffic. We continue to hope for–and advocate actively for–practical visions of the Garver building as a public asset with public uses.

To view past reports on the “Old Sugar Castle” on this blog, click here.

-Sarah White

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