2013-09-27 / Letters

Farmers: don’t do business in city

To the editor:

I am a South Portland resident, a former vendor in the South Portland Farmers Market and presently a vendor in five other farmers markets.

I have only one piece of advice for Caitlin Jordan and the vendors at South Portland Farmers Market. South Portland is not a good place to do business. After three years, if the city council can’t recognize the benefit and that our market is for our citizens, then they never will. No additional statistics will sway them. On numerous times I have given councilors farmers market studies that emphasize the importance of being in a location with high visibility. Now they want more documentation?

Signs for a farmers market in Erskine Park – no because the Portland Pipeline runs under it. Portland Pipeline is a member of Dig Safe, Dig Safe has assured me locating a sign would be not be a problem. Huge campaign signs were erected on this corner for the last election. Closing Hinckley Drive is a hardship. Four other communities in Maine close streets for farmers markets. Despite numerous requests I have made, the city has refused to erect detour signs directing through traffic on Hinkley Drive through Legion Square on market day to alleviate congestion at Broadway and Cottage. The city of Portland even closes Baxter Boulevard on Sundays. Nine communities in Maine provide locations for farmers markets on municipal property. This is just a few of the problems with the city.

Inaction, excuses, excuses. Cut your losses, farmers and move on. There are other towns in Maine that will welcome you.

David Orbeton
South Portland

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