, Newburyport, MA


October 9, 2012

What an opportunity for the waterfront

To the editor:

I attended the waterfront meeting, too. This is my first letter to the editor. I’d like to thank Mayor Donna Holaday, James Shanley and others for the awesome plan that was presented that night.

As a Newburyport resident, I supported an open waterfront park, as I did in those surveys. I never supported any building along the street or on the dirt lots. So I left the meeting excited and optimistic. I’m not the only one who feels that way. I support this plan — a gift perhaps — of small buildings and more park paid for in full now and for the future by a mix of commercial and residential uses and, even better, built mostly in the area far away from the boardwalk.

What are the alternatives — a tax increase, a surprise gift /grant, the NRA somehow paying for it all? Maybe you favor restoring the area to its original condition filled with decrepit buildings or as a beach/mud flats, or weekly weekends of conflict in our tourist-friendly downtown followed by endless legal battles to scare away developers or, worst of all, nothing.

Let’s all get together and say bye-bye to almost 40 years of cleared open parking and let the NRA — and perhaps New England Development on the adjoining parcels as a result — to move on. Let’s say no to those who say no way. I say what an opportunity! I’m a citizen for enough is enough. We want our newly opened and improved waterfront now.

Go, NRA. Maybe we can dedicate it at Yankee Homecoming in ... 2015?

Neil Wilson


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