Welcome to your Scientology nightmare, people of Clearwater, Florida - 2017-02-12
On February 6, commissioners for the City of Clearwater, Florida approved the "Imagine Clearwater" plan for the downtown waterfront district. The plan calls for the demolition of City Hall and the Harborview convention center, reworking the waterfront into a concert and event venue. The 50-year-old Harborview has been an eyesore for many years and has failed the original purpose as a convention center. Officials claim that City Hall is unsuitable for its purpose, being too small to house all city departments and too expensive to maintain. Rather than rebuild on the same site officials are leaving the downtown area and building a new City Hall elsewhere.
In 2013 a referendum passed to redevelop the entire site as the new home of the Clearwater Marine Aquarium which had experienced a boom in the aftermath of the movie Dolphin Tale, based on the story of Winter the dolphin who is on display at the aquarium. Scientology began working behind the scenes to oppose the plan and in 2015 the aquarium decided not to pursue that location. Scientology offered to purchase parts of the property in 2016 to develop additional hotel facilities, but that offer was not accepted.