Historic West Side Vice President Kurt DeWeese and his wife Diana DeWeese (and their daughter Marissa) were awarded the Good Neighbor Award for Individual at the 2022 Springfield Inner City Older Neighborhood’s Annual Celebration for their work to keep the vacant lot on the southeast corner of Lawrence & MacArthur from being commercialized.
“Kurt DeWeese is no stranger to the Springfield City Council or to zoning issues, and he has been an outspoken opponent of up-zoning and spot zoning that would damage the character of residential neighborhoods.
“So when he spoke against a zoning change to allow a parking lot on the southeast corner of Lawrence and MacArthur, it was no surprise that his well-researched history and arguments against the rezoning would help the council decide to deny the changes.
“What may have been a surprise to many was what happened next. The DeWeese family purchased the vacant lot, located just two blocks from their home in the Historic West Side Neighborhood Association, keeping it safe from future commercial development.”
In December, the family, with the donation and help of neighbor Bill Buscher, put up a Christmas tree on the corner, and some additional neighbors added decorations.
Future plans for the lot include a new Historic West Side Neighbor Association sign, new seasonal flowers, perennial plantings that the bees love, and a tree in the back.