2013-10-25 / Letters

Keep her clean, livable

To the editor:

Let’s face it, the South Portland shipyards are gone, the bicycle factory, the piggery and the cannery have closed, and the fishing fleet has long since departed Simonton Cove. South Portland just ain’t what she used to be. Times change, people and businesses adapt. In our case, we’re cleaner, greener and more prosperous now than we ever were as an industrial city. We don’t owe our current fortune to a pipeline, a mall or a semiconductor plant, and much as we appreciate those businesses, we shouldn’t get too attached. Businesses come and go with the fickle winds of global economics.

The economic engine we should be fighting to protect is our real estate. For most of us, our homes are our single greatest investment. As we maintain and improve them, we add value for ourselves and our community. On my daily walk, I see a dozen or more houses under construction. Each of these projects means good wages flowing to the skilled carpenters, painters and landscapers on the job. These are local jobs and the money gets spent multiple times in the local economy.

People want to live in South Portland because it’s beautiful, safe and affordable. They come for beaches, bike paths, new schools, the short hop to Portland and, admit it, they come for Scratch Bakery. Seriously, the real estate ads say, “Walk to Willard Beach and Scratch Bakery.” I haven’t seen one yet that says, “Walk to oil pipeline” or “Unobstructed views of 70- foot smokestacks. That stuff only sells houses cheap as people flee. If you live here and love what South Portland has become, if you have invested your hard-earned money in a piece of this beautiful city, I hope you will join me in protecting its future by voting yes for the Waterfront Protection Ordinance.

Peter Stanton
South Portland

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