Editor, The Messenger:
Apparently the County Commissioners (at least two of them) have been discussing potential uses for the former Dollar General building in Glouster. Before they make any final decisions, I would like to offer my insight.
First, the records center is fine where it is. The building on Lancaster Street has very limited possibilities for commercial development, regardless of what windfall the commissioners dream of gaining from selling it. The building sits on mainly a hillside lot, and much work has been done on the building in the past to keep it from sliding down the hill. Any redevelopment would involve demolishing the building and constructing something new, most likely apartments.
Considering the cost of buying the building, demolition, and engineering costs of building on a hillside, this would be an expensive undertaking for any developer. I am sure residents of the Columbia Avenue neighborhood would also be concerned with increased population density and traffic issues on that end of town.
The redevelopment of the Glouster building could be a joint effort between the village and county that would benefit all. There is room for expansion, and the village owns some adjoining property. The building sits at Glouster’s southern and most visible entrance, across from the park and new stadium, and would complement the redevelopment efforts being put forward by many people and groups in Glouster. It also makes fiscal sense for the village to put money into this project, rather than propping up the current village hall.
I encourage residents of Glouster and Trimble Twp. to contact the Commissioners and express their concerns on this issue. The northern townships were ignored by county government before, and we responded by electing two of our own in 1992. If necessary, we will reorganize again and elect our own in 2020.