ASHLAND, Ore. – The Oregon Shakespeare Festival is seeking help from the city to renovate one of the city’s plazas.
The Chautauqua Square, next to the Black Swan Theater, is currently leased to OSF. The festival says they want to remove or repair the fountain and get rid of the concrete planters to ease congestion and encourage public gatherings.
But some city leaders say removing the seating could create a problem for the city’s homeless, who frequent that area.
“The homeless and the travelers are there to sit, and they do have a right to panhandle,” said City Councilor Carol Voisin. “That’s not against the law.”
City councilors say there are also questions around who should pay, considering the lease specifies changes to the property be paid for by OSF.
The renovations could cost anywhere from $10,000 to $40,000 depending on if the fountain is removed in pieces, removed as a whole, or repaired.