Member of the reality-based community of progressive (not anonymous) Massachusetts blogs
I could not, alas, make it to the Tanner St public meeting last night due to another obligation, but Dick Howe has a post with a report.
This is my neck of the woods, so I’m keenly interested in things like proposed realignments for the south end of Tanner St, and the different ideas for connecting the Connector better to the district. The first addresses the major problem of bottleneck at the Connector exit; it’s a nightmare sometimes to try to get onto Tanner St which abuts real close to, but does not align with, the Connector exits and entrances, with the light at Target being right afterwards. Then you add all the 18-wheeler, tow truck, and truck traffic trying to get access from Plain to the industrial end of Tanner, and you can well imagine that something like a Connector exit/entrance at Howard St (the left-turn at the north end of Tanner) would allow the truck traffic more direct access, alleviating that problem as well. I’m not sure that can be done, but if it can, it’d be a significant improvement for both area residents trying to get home as well as attractive to potential new industrial companies who would have direct truck access without tangling with much city traffic.
Anyway, there’s lots of talk about a trail along the River Meadow Brook, which is cool, and trying to figure out how to allow access to and use of East Pond, another natural asset. Also discussion about improvements to Tanner like good sidewalks (boy would that be welcome) and trees, land use studies to figure out any zoning changes, and how to fluff up the pretty dismal entrances into the district.
The big problem with long term plans for an area such as this is that what might be judged to be attractive to businesses now may not in the future. However, I feel that the folks behind this plan have taken a realistic and balanced approach - noting that grandiose, single-company large-scale buildings are not the way to go, but to create a place where small and medium sized industrial companies can buy or lease subdivisions, while making sure to accommodate existing businesses, of which there are many.
More information on Tanner is on the City’s webpage, including maps, meeting materials, and hopefully soon, the draft proposal.
Our frugal neighbors in Dracut will need some convincing.
Update:Thank you for the support! As a graduate of Greater Lowell Class of 1984 I took special interest in this project. I was recently elected to the school committee and I have a son that is a sophomore in Auto Tech. This is a great school and after forty years it needs a face lift. We are having an information session Saturday December 1st from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm at the Dracut Library. Please stop by and say hello. Again thank you for your support.
Rene (Butch) Dion
Chairman - Friends of GLTHS
If interested in buying or distributing tickets, you can contact Butch Dion, Chairman Friends of GLTHS at 508-735-5150 cell. Or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
All are invited to come. You can show up at door if you don’t have a ticket. You can mail a donation if you can’t make it that night.
Friends of GLTHS
52 Concord Road
Dracut MA 01826
Please make checks out to “Friends of GLTHS.” Any amount certainly would be appreciated.
Check out the website: Friends of GLTHS
PS. Please don’t let my recent series of diaries cast an overwhelming shadow on the good occuring out there at GLTHS. We should be mindful of the future, at all times. My focus on the past is intended to help set a proper course, forward. Improving the “physical plant” at the school will help foster better education and burnish the potential of the young adults that attend. - Jack
But I had a great time at the City of Lights parade. If you can believe it, the first time I’ve stayed for the parade. I met new people, made some friends, and saw lots and lots and lots of old ones. Old friends, I mean, the friends weren’t necessarily old. Some of them were very young.
Some tweets + photos from the event I did:
The bandstand at the City of Lights parade! twitter.com/leftinlowell/s…— LeftinLowell.com (@leftinlowell) November 24, 2012
Oh yeah, I remember freezing my butt off doing these things with an out of tune horn. twitter.com/leftinlowell/s…— LeftinLowell.com (@leftinlowell) November 24, 2012
I added an addendum to the above, as I didn’t mean to imply anything bad about the LHS band in particular: “(The being out of tune was inevitable in the freezing cold.)”
City Hall was just lit. Official start of the holiday season! twitter.com/leftinlowell/s…— LeftinLowell.com (@leftinlowell) November 24, 2012
Also, I checked out Sweet Lydia’s new place at 160 Merrimack St. It was hoppin’, with lots of people coming in and buying her yummy goods while I was there. I was so pleased by that! She’s a great addition to Lowell’s downtown and, if you are stuck for a gift for someone, consider giving them some marshmallow goodness (or peanut butter and jelly candy bars, or jelly candies, or other stuff). You can’t go wrong with marshmallows and sweets! I nearly fainted with delight at the gourmet jelly candies I got. (One type has mango in it. That’s one of the magic words! The other, if you must know, is “maple.” As in syrup, candy, taffy, sugar, etc.)
I hope to god LiL readers are not out there in the mobs at big box stores fighting for the last blu-ray player on the shelf. Not only would I find standing in long lines frustrating, but I also find that the pushing back of “Black Friday” into what for me is a sacred family day, Thanksgiving, is appalling. I have a relative that had to report in to her job at midnight, dictating how long she could really stay at our gathering. We should draw some lines on days that everyone gets off…too few holidays are left where retail workers get a day off. Also, big box stores…yuck.
But if you are like me, and try to do as much of your gift shopping with local businesses first (there are some relatives who are impossible to shop for, so it’s not a strict rule but a stern guideline), Howl in Lowell has a really nice guide to locally owned Greater Lowell businesses where you can feel good about your purchases (note: there are some big box stores listed as well). Locally owned businesses keep almost twice as much money in the economy as big box stores, and while it’s not a guarantee, generally they treat their employees better. Especially when you compare them to WalMart or other similar big box stores.
Go check out that Howl link - there were businesses familiar to me, but a bunch I didn’t know about as well. Of course, tomorrow is the City of Lights parade so you can come down, enjoy the festivities, and get a bunch of gift shopping from local stores done all at the same time!
Got notice of the final of three Tanner St District public meetings, set for Nov 29th:
The City of Lowell and the Department of Planning and Development
invite you to a Community Workshop for the Tanner Street District Economic Development Plan
Thursday, November 29, 2012 | 6:00 PM
LRTA Building - 100 Hale Street
PLEASE COME TO REVIEW THE DRAFT PLAN FOR THE DISTRICT.
For more information about the upcoming workshop or the project, please contact:
Sarah Brown | 978 - 674 - 4252 x 1446 | SBrown@lowellma.gov
Craig Thomas | 978 - 674 - 4252 x 1445 | CThomas@lowellma.gov
Or visit the website at:
A post on Facebook by our frequent commenter, Joe S, about the public meeting on the Rourke Bridge, caught my attention, and I got permission to reprint it here. I’ve put it in with minor edits.
Rourke Bridge meeting was confined to the bridge only (area impact subject of next meeting). The team used models to project the need as of 2035 (hopefully well after bridge is built). Several options on location evaluated, one being to tear down the temp bridge and leave it at that (rejected). Build options were for locations and size.
The location options were a) at the present bridge, b) slightly upriver to connect to Old Ferry Road by crossing the river at an angle, c) downriver at an unspecified location and d) upriver in the North Chelmsford area to connect route 40.
For size, it was [proposed] 2-lane, 4-lane and 6-lane. The 2-lane is too small, the 6-lane is overkill and the 4-lane (likely selected) is good with plenty of margin. Much of the following discussion related to impact on the Pawtucketville neighborhood (concern that a better bridge would increase local traffic), and surprisingly some residents seemed to favor extending a highway through Pawtucketville (ugh!)… Although not concluded at the meeting, I suspect the eventual answer will be a 4-lane bridge with pilings (someone wanted none) basically in the same location as the temporary bridge.
Best case that would be [built] in about 5 years. In the meantime, upgrades to surrounding streets and intersections will be the subject of the next meeting.
He also added that “the plan is to have 5-ft bike lanes on each side” for you biking enthusiasts (lookin’ at you Marianne!).
Donations may be sent to:
Karen Muscovitz Memorial Fund
Jeanne D’ Arc Credit Union
658 Merrimack St
Lowell Ma. 01854
Please make checks payable to Karen Muscovitz Memorial Fund
(Bumped as a reminder…this event is today! –Lynne)
*FLASH* Anyone that attends tonight’s RALLY will receive 5 Million bucks from Donald Trump!
Where the ax meets the grindstone - Lowell. Do you remember this ad, Fighter?
For more details and to RSVP, CLICK HERE.
Normally I don’t push too hard on Facebook likes, but sometimes I get in the mood. This is one of those moods. So, if you are a Facebook user and wanna catch our feed, it’s here.
I post lots of stuff on Facebook that I don’t get to here, tidbits that I find on subjects political, cultural, and community-based, most often very local. Some days I post more than others, but it’s never more than 3-5 items per day on average. Some of my tweets from @leftinlowell.com make it there as well, when I remember to check off the box to send them (I most often tweet from my phone). But often you’ll find stuff there that you’ll find no where else, like my most recent post on non-chemical agriculture, or sharing an article from Howl about the chicken movement in Lowell. Yes, chickens! If that intrigues you then go hit the LiL FB page.
I also try to remember (with varying success) to post a link when I create a new blog post here, so it can be convenient for knowing when LiL has new content. Jack and Mimi also have admin access to the FB page though they don’t use it very often (though, hint hint, feel free to).
If you find something of particular interest, you can always hit the share button on Facebook to publish something of ours into your own feed. We’re only as good as the community who spreads the word! And if you like our feed, then share our page with others!
Now, back to your regularly scheduled program. Whatever that was.
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