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LETTERS / Quality v. Cheap Way

Dear Editor

High Country Readers. Thanks for a few minutes of your time. First I want to inform that I have been a resident in this community since 1970 and seen many changes over the years. My comment is in a way a request of the town’s power structure. I recently read of the Downtown Development Associations decision to use concrete when dealing with sidewalk improvements in the central business district because it is much cheaper than brick. While that is true, the cheap way continues to define this town’s search to solve all urban development problems in the cheapest way possible. May I suggest a visit to Mount Holly [US321 to Lincolnton and NC27 east] and take a look how they have handled the renovation of their downtown. The use of the red/rust colored brick sets the whole place off – especially when you put in the benches, plants, decorative lighting and so on.

In the past I have commented to the mayor and some members of the council that Boone is NOT a quaint village anymore. Yet, the community’s leadership –  business, university, and political act as if it were 1890 or 1900. To cut and paste in the cheapest manner does not produce a vibrant community. For example, right now we need a significant bond issue to handle street widening and improvements [e.g. State Farm Rd., King Street west], sidewalks, bike lanes, and downtown parking [like a deck opposite library]. Yes, a few pennies increase in property taxes, but given the improvements it will be well worth any additional cost to property owners [all types plus me]. Remember that “Taxes are the price we pay for civilization”. Enough said. Just time to get this place redefined and away from a picture of a community that has a third world downtown appendage on the west end hooked on to an urbanized, hi-rise university in the middle followed by a typical suburban sprawl to the east and south. Anyone wishing to pick up the ball and run? Good luck given the Howard Street 20 year old project that has yet to turn a spade. 

Thomas Jamison