When it comes to buildings, the state is known for coming up with bland names that lack context and don’t exactly roll off the tongue. Recent local additions such as The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet Office Building and The 300 Building immediately leap to mind.
So, we, like many in the community were excited Tuesday when officials unveiled the name of the new state office building where the Capital Plaza Tower once stood. The Mayo-Underwood Building, at 500 Mero St., proudly bears the name of Frankfort’s former African American school, which was located on the land known back in the day as The Craw or The Bottom, prior to the erection of the tower.
We applaud the Bevin administration for selecting a name that harkens back to the neighborhood’s roots and acknowledges the achievements of those who attended the segregated school.
In his comments at Tuesday’s event, Finance and Administration Cabinet Secretary William Landrum III said the name honors the past while moving Frankfort to the future.
“Unfortunately, we cannot undo some of the injustices, but we can remember and recognize what was here before,” he told attendees at the ceremony.
We agree. So too do Franklin County Judge-Executive Huston Wells and Mayor Bill May, both of whom were in attendance at the unveiling of the name of the building that will house 23 state offices and approximately 1,500 workers.
The top city and county leaders commended Landrum for remembering the heritage of the area and never losing sight of the significance of the location throughout the redevelopment project.
Though The Mayo-Underwood Building is still a few months from being operational and employees aren’t expected to begin moving in until October, we are pleased by its historically significant name and re-welcome the Mayo-Underwood brand to the community.
As the 26th president, Theodore Roosevelt, once said, “The more you know about the past, the better prepared you are for the future.”