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Let’s Develop Strategies To Revitalize & Reinvent West Groton Square

Dear Editor:

   Thanks to Robert Stewart at the Groton Herald for writing the article about West Groton Center (WGC). (See story page 3, August 17, 2018) 

   The article was thoughtful and reminded me how much my wife and I appreciated WGC when we lived “on the square” for about 11 years from mid-1970 to mid-1980. We lived in and still own the blue house and carriage house that is located along the east side of the square. 

   When we lived there, we considered WGC a lively place. There was Winnie, Babe and Lonnie Sherwin at the Clover Farm store, Ted at the post office, a working leather board factory, a train  with noise and fanfare that came through a couple of times per week and, of course, people from the neighborhood to greet  when they passed our house!

   Unfortunately, the square is much less lively today. Except for the post office, park, and automobile traffic, WGC has lost its status as a center.  To me WGC looks and feels empty.  However, rather than feeling discouraged, I think about all the possible ways WGC can be revitalized and reinvented and once again be an important place in the community.

   That is the purpose of this letter.

   I invite people who also feel that it would be a good thing to revitalize WGC to meet and share visions and ideas and to help develop strategies that would support revitalization. 

   There are many things to build on: WGC has a post office, 3 buildings zoned Village Center Business, a river, waterfalls, a waterfront park, a parking lot, RiverCourt Residences, lots of automobile traffic-- all the while being a clearly defined entranceway to the west side of Groton!

   Possible things to consider could be:

Enhancing the atmosphere and character created by the existing buildings and the Squannacook River? Bringing commerce back to WGC? What kind? New activities? New uses? Bike paths to square? Bike racks? Increase pedestrian accessibility and safety?

   If you are interested in sharing ideas, exploring possibilities and maybe forming a “Friends of West Groton Center” group let me know and maybe we together could begin to figure out what the next steps would be. Contact: fmamvang@verizon.net

Thanks,

Frank Vangeli

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