Community gathers to 'Save the Godbold' - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

Community gathers to 'Save the Godbold'


Nearly 30 people gathered in front of Café J on Tuesday afternoon in an effort to "Save the Godbold."

"We think it is very much worth preserving and we just want to make sure we can do everything possible to make sure it is," said Pam Brink.

Pam is President of the Lubbock Heritage Society.

"We want to talk about that, we want a conversation, we want people to engage for this building specifically and of course for the city in general."

Local businessman Clayton Isom is currently in discussion to purchase the land the Godbold center is on. The Heritage Society fears that he will tear the building down and replace it with a multi-story hotel. Isom says that's not the case:

"I respect the people's opinion and their effort in communicating their position. They obviously have a much more liberal position when it comes to private property rights than I do, and it's okay to disagree. The citizens of this community have always proven to be staunch supporters of development and private property rights," he said in a written statement.

"Our company is actively completing the due diligence on the property, as is normal with most every real estate transaction.  Although any talk of a hotel project is purely speculative, we do currently own four hotels in Lubbock, and we are very proud that we have created over 150 jobs and generated millions of dollars in the community in property and hotel occupancy taxes."

"Our family has a long history of supporting property rights; we would be supporting Mr. Godbold's right to make his own decision with his own private property whether we were involved or not."

The Godbold Center does have a long history in Lubbock. It began as The Plains Clinic with three doctors. In 1939 it was sold to the Sisters of St. Mary of Orange. They added rooms until there was no more space in 1964. Currently it houses Café J and Chrome.

Brink just wants to make sure the history is not forgotten.

"Architecture is always the most immediate way to keep your stories alive as a community. It's big and it's out there and people are curious about it. Once the buildings are gone the stories start to fade," she said. "We're not a three year old suburb of Dallas. We're a hundred years old and we should have buildings and touchstones that let people know that. Architecture is always the most immediate way to keep your stories alive as a community."

Brink hopes that in the coming weeks she will have a chance to speak with Clayton Isom about the site and she welcomes the opportunity for compromise.

"I would absolutely love to sit down with Clayton and have a long discussion and engage my board and give our evidence and brainstorm. That would be fabulous."

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