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Yesterday in La Crosse

How could downtown compete with suburban shopping? With a parking ramp, 58 years ago



In early 1961, the city of La Crosse was getting ready to build a nearly 400 car ramp at Market Square. A New York company was hired to design the ramp, costing about half a million dollars. The ramp would open a year later around Washington’s birthday, and it would be used until the 1990’s, when the current Market Square ramp was built.

A plan by La Crosse to annex part of the Town of Shelby was compared to the Soviet Union. “Too Khrushchevian,” said Shelby town chairman Robert Frederick. He argued that if the city’s proposal to annex 2000 acres, including State Road School, turned out to be a “land grab scheme,” then it must be opposed.

The American Medical Association predicted that by the year 2000, it might be common for Americans to live to be 120 years old, maybe even 140. The experts based their prediction on a study of the Hunza people of Pakistan, who were said to live beyond 100, on a diet low on meat or eggs, but high in fruit, vegetables, grains, and goat cheese. Live long and prosper, in 1961, yesterday in La Crosse.

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from UW - La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area. He regularly covers local courts and city and county government. Brad produces the features "Yesterday in La Crosse" and "What's Buried on Brad's Desk." He also writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse. Brad been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.

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