I was a resident of Stratton Road for some 30 years. My husband, Bill, and his brother did most of the construction on our home when it was built in the early 1950s. At the time, we were the last house on the right. I feel that I am quite familiar with the area.
What happened at The Spruces was a terrible tragedy. I frequently speak with friends who were forced to leave and others who remain. I appreciate the tireless efforts of those trying to help.
It's unclear to me just how many of the residents are interested in moving to the Lowry development. Some have already left, some remain and still others plan to leave the area. Some of my neighbors here at Meadowvale are former Spruces residents. The number of people interested should not remain a question.
It's unfortunate we are forced to choose between affordable housing and conservation. The Lowry acreage is amazingly beautiful and should remain in preservation. I don't think anyone should make a decision regarding this land without having walked the property. After doing that, I don't know how anyone can, in good conscience, remove this land from preservation.
I have watched many of the televised meetings of the Selectmen and the Affordable Housing Committee. I would like to be at these meeting to ask my questions, but I am no longer able.
The section of the Burbank property located off upper Luce Road is grand and majestic and deserves to remain in preservation. I take issue, however, with the reasons given for choosing the Lowry property over the Burbank property:
1. Availability of water and sewer lines: I may be wrong, but I wasn't aware the residents of Luce Road did not have these services.
2. The Lowry Property is "downtown": As I do not drive, I found it occasionally necessary to walk to the Methodist Church at 777 Main St. Believe me, the Lowry Property is not "downtown!" I hope Guntlow's feasibility study included the impact of vehicles entering Stratton Road at that location, where it is difficult to see traffic.
The water problem that already exists on Stratton Road also should have been considered in the study. We are aware, from previous meetings, that water problems are not fixable. How will increased development affect this problem? When we were building our home, our neighbor was cited by the town because his septic tank was overflowing onto the property below him.
After attempts to solve the problem, he went to Town Hall. He said they were the "experts," and if they told him what to do, he would do it. The sewer was extended.
We don't hear much about General Cable anymore. Work had been started, but discontinued. It has become an eyesore. The land around it could be beautifully landscaped. The parking lot is big enough to provide land for additional units.
Priscilla M. Northup