Saturday, January 21, 2006

Flagstaff historic preservationists seeing red

[Source: Rachel Peterson, Arizona Daily Sun] -- The color red is symbolic of energy, strength, success and it enhances relationships in Asian cultures. But in downtown Flagstaff, it might be taboo as a building color. A downtown business owner is battling with the Historic Preservation Commission over her use of the bright color to attract people to her Asian-influenced business. Commission members say their opposition has nothing to do with the culture of the store; the color doesn't fit the guidelines for earth-toned and pastel colors in the historic district's handbook, which is enforced by ordinance.

Khamsone Siriminivong, a native of Laos who migrated to the U.S. in the 1980s, opened her designer boutique on Route 66 in the historic district of Flagstaff in December. She painted the wood facade of the building red with black trim. She said she chose the color to revive the Asian culture in Flagstaff, which had a much stronger foothold here in the late 19th century -- the era the design committee is trying to imitate. "What I'm trying to bring back is awareness of Asians in Flagstaff," she said.

[Note: To read the full article, click here. Photo source: Jenn Ireland, Arizona Daily Sun.]