Peoria Park District Wants Public Input on Columbus Statue's Fate | WGLT

Peoria Park District Wants Public Input on Columbus Statue's Fate

Jul 29, 2020
Originally published on July 29, 2020 4:41 pm

The public will have its chance to weigh in on the Peoria Park District's ongoing discussion on whether or not the Christopher Columbus statue should be removed from Laura Bradley Park on the West Bluff.

The park district will host a public input session at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 5, at the Noble Center. Current COVID-19 restrictions limit in-person attendance to 50 people. Citizens also can participate through Zoom, or send their comments in digitally via email or the park district website.

The Columbus statue was first placed in the Uplands neighborhood in 1902 by the area's original developers. It was moved to Bradley Park in 1947 after it was deemed a traffic hazard at its prior location.

Recently, calls to remove the statue have amplified in some parts of the community as part of a larger movement to remove monuments to historic figures with ties to slavery or genocide. Others cite the statue's historic value to the neighborhood as an argument against its removal.

The statue has been vandalized several times.

The park district board is expected to make a final decision on the statue's fate in September.

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