Yeah, exactly - why should developers give a crap about the communities in which they build? They have money to protect and should be allowed to build in any manner they see fit.
Seriously though, you are right. Bitching about an old building on a message board is not going to save it but there are ways to protect these places, however, it doesn’t seem like there is much will for that kind of thing in this town. Other cities are much better protecting their heritage, other cities have preservation and historical review boards, other cities have activist citizens who do care and demand better. Here in Raleigh, its a free for all. Developers are rarely challenged and at some point we are going to look back on our decisions and realize that we could have done better. That maybe we should have saved the warehouses in the warehouse district, that we shouldn’t have allowed so so many old brick structures to be be replaced with cookie cutter apartment buildings, that maybe we should have done somethings to create an environment that our long standing institutions could thrive in.
Old buildings are what makes a city interesting, they serve as reminders of a community’s heritage and the city’s complexity. Old buildings attract people and tourists and provide a warmth and environment that simply cannot be recreated with today’s practices. If you cannot recognize the aesthetic and intrinsic value of preserving history then I simply feel bad for you. Just remember, regret only goes one way.