Opinion Columns & Blogs

Work-release center has been good arena neighbor

A downtown arena and a corrections facility still seem like unlikely neighbors, which is why there was talk eight years ago of moving the state’s work-release center away from Emporia and Waterman. But as we said in our Tuesday editorial, the proximity of the work-release center to Intrust Bank Arena has not been a public safety problem. A.J. Boleski, the arena’s general manager, said he was told Monday by the Wichita Police Department that “crime within the four-block radius of Intrust Bank Arena decreased by 23 percent the first year we opened and has maintained ever since.” The thinking of police, Boleski said, is “that if you bring a lot of good people into a certain area it causes the bad people to go elsewhere, and that is what has happened with the arena events.” – Rhonda Holman