, Newburyport, MA

July 31, 2013

Dredge the river and bring in the tall ships

Newburyport Daily News

---- — To the editor:

The Newburyport Redevelopment Authority is still spending a great deal of time and money trying to figure out how to place 32 condominiums with an underground parking lot for 64 car spaces on our central waterfront, which is filled tidelands, most likely with toxicity underneath, and is subject to flooding. All this is being done in the name of bringing more economic prosperity to Newburyport.

Well, I think I have a better idea for them to pursue to bring more economic prosperity to Newburyport: Instead of building an underground car park on the waterfront, dredge the river!

Yes, the NRA controls the river out to midstream. The last time tall ships came to Newburyport, they were a great success. (The Custom House Maritime Museum said they had never had so many visitors in one day.) But there is one problem: It is difficult to bring the tall ships into Newburyport. The river is basically too shallow. It needs dredging.

So here is a wonderful new direction for the NRA to help Newburyport’s economy. Instead of directing their efforts toward condominiums with an underground parking lot that will inevitably flood, with BMWs and Mercedes Benzes bobbing around in it, direct their efforts to bringing majestic, tall ships to tie up along the waterfront, making almost everyone happier and the city more prosperous.

Nicholas Metcalf