February 6, 2008 / 6:05 PM / 11 years ago

Alcatraz prison won't be removed for peace center

A general view of Alcatraz in San Francisco, April 30, 2007. Local voters have rejected a proposal to demolish the famed Alcatraz prison and transform the island in San Francisco's Bay into a global peace center, according to complete election results on Wednesday. REUTERS/Robert Galbraith

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Local voters have rejected a proposal to demolish the famed Alcatraz prison and transform the island in San Francisco’s Bay into a global peace center, according to complete election results on Wednesday.

The proposition, which shared the presidential primary ballot measure on Tuesday, was rejected by 72 percent of San Francisco voters.

The island is San Francisco’s second-most popular paid tourist attraction after cable cars, and occupies a dramatic position in the Bay near the Golden Gate Bridge.

Supporters had wanted to raze the prison, which gets 1.4 million visitors a year, and build a conference center for conflict resolution, a labyrinth and a medicine wheel, a Native American symbol representing harmony and understanding.

The federal prison at Alcatraz, known as “The Rock,” was home to notorious U.S. criminals such as Al Capone, George “Machine Gun” Kelly and Robert “Birdman of Alcatraz” Stroud before it closed in 1963.

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