Well sweetie pie, by the time yew read this missive the kiddies will have kissed good-bye to summer 2022, and be back in their respective classrooms. School started in these parts Mondee last, and yew could tell cuz the street corners were filled with students waiting for buses, and the buses were seen all over town. Naturly, the boyz and gurlz weren’t – generally speakin’ – in favor of the end of summer vacation, but yew could rest assured that moms all over town were. It’s kind o’ sad to see the end of the summer vacation, though. It reminds a body that the year is moving on, kwite quickly effen yew think about it, and before we all can say “Tis the season,” it’ll be Christmas and the beginning of 2023.
What really feels different this year is it finally looks like we can really git back to normal. No more shadows of Chinese flu menace, and the vax crowd has been tamped down by the announcement that vaxes are no longer required. Everybody is equal again, no more enemies – at least in this regard. Soooo, let’s get one with it. Hurray for Normalcy – as Warren G. Harding coined.
Of course, the beginning of the school year takes a back seat to the big news of the day, week, month, year. Jest as anyone with two brain cells figgered out a while back, the Haven Project is now belly-up. Or, to put a fine pernt on it based on a press release that came from the Simon Group (the developers) two or so years ago, there will be no buying of your 2022 Christmas gifts, or any other year at the Haven.
The slow walk toward inevitable collapse came to an end with the announcement on a local NBC affiliate that the project is dead. According to Sammy Bluejay, who is monitoring the commints hither and thither, the fact that the project is dead ain’t the big part o’ the story that people are talking about. What they wanna know is why State Rep. Dorinda Borer and the state delegation were the ones making said announcement.
Some were wondering why the social media set was on fire over who made the announcement. But, methinks what really stuck in people’s craw was Herronner made herself the heavy in the story. She is the one that tried to talk tough about putting the Simon Group’s feet to the fire, and she did a photo-op walking up Water Street, threatening blight citations back earlier this spring.
Soooooo, with the collapse of the projeck, she should have been the one to break the news to said population – as if said population wasn’t already aware something was amiss. That was one reason people were/are upset. T’other reason, according to Sammy, is the fack that the developer let it be known that they were pulling out in May, a full three months before the announcement. Why did it take so long to let people know? Why was the rumor mill allowed to churn out the grist that keeps the wags in this town crowing?
The company is using the catch-all excuse that Covid did its dastardly deed and wrecked the chances of getting things off the ground. Yeah, OK. Let’s cut through the Chinese flu excuse and just understand that malls ain’t what’s making money these days. Store chains are rarely opening new locations, but they are closing old ones.
The Haven was supposed to be a high-end outlet mall. As we said years ago, the high-end outlet malls in Clinton and Westbrook are barely holding on, losing tenants, and not having the traffic they once did. Why would people want to put a mall into operation now? And we won’t git into the traffic and the access problems.
Suffice it to say that the projeck was slow walked from the time it was announced. Remember, then-Mayor Ed O’Brien put permits and fees that were to come from the construction as “revenue” in several budgets, only to find those fees elusive.
Now the Simon Group is gonna level the acreage and try to sell off the land. Sammy sez he heard the developer put $41 million into the thing so far, it’s hoping to get back betwixt $33-35 million. We shall see.
What happens next? Stay tuned. Already the rumor mill is churning out possible buyers.
In our last isshue, the topic of vagrancy at the Old Grove and environs came up. People have complained about several problems down there having to do with what some call the “night life” of the place. Well, Nelly Nuthatch was flying over the area early one morning last week and noted that members of the constabulary were visible and keeping watch over the area to keep the vagrancy problem down. Now, the matter has been a concern for years, and has had spotty enforcement.
As yew might expeck, the opinions on the success of the surveillance runs the gamut. Some are saying the city has not done enuff for years and is only making a weak attempt now cuz of the publicity, whilst others are wondering what the city is doing to help the people who are camping out there at night. Damned effen yew do, damned effen yew don’t. This is one topic where we can say no matter what happens, somebody will complain about it.
Fun, fun, fun! Robby Raven stopped by and noted that the city’s fireworks display is gonna happen this Labor Day weekend. Signs have been posted, and the hoopla has continued. It’ll be interestin’ to see what happens. The ostensible reason the city gave for moving the fireworks from July 3 to Labor Day weekend was the smaller “local” crowd it would attrack.
By having it later in the summer the traffic would be not so heavy. The people on the beach would be better behaved, and there wouldn’t be as much of a need for the constabulary to be out in as great a force. Nobody really believed that. It all had to do with dollars and cents.
Y’see, with the city still in austerity budgeting, having people on double- or triple-time would be a dent to the expenditure side, even though the fireworks themselves are paid for by donations. There are still things the city has to dole out cash for. So, despite the quotes to the contrary, this was a budgetary move more than anything else. Will we go back to July 3? Who knows?
Tennyrate, Cobina lives within earshot of the display, and will hear the bang and blast of it all from her domicile, whilst trying to keep her kitty cat from climbing the walls. She also intends to be indoors rawther early as to avoid the traffic toward the beach that usually happens.
Jest a couple o’ tidbits: When will the walkway at Bradley Point be reopened? The walk has been sealed off and the landscaping – such as it is – seems to be done. When are we gonna be able to traverse the walk?
Bulk trash is in a week or so. Each quarter they have bulk trash, and each quarter the city announces that televisions will not be collected. As sure as there are green apples, yew can see many TV screens along the curb, and they stay there for weeks before the owners git the message that it ain’t gonna be picked up. It’s interesting when bulk trash happens cuz it’s an amazement the amount of “stuff” people put out each time. The sheer volume of it along the street boggles the mind.
Whatever happened to the Enterprise Zone along the West River that was announced almost two years ago? Is this another grand announcement that’s gonna wallow in the mud of nonmovement like other projects?
With that bit o’ chatter, I’ll close this time till next, mitt luff und kizzez,