The Salem development warrants high road

September 22, 2010
By

The city of Salem needs to get serious about the Highland Avenue development enlarging the Walmart and creating a Lowe’s.

It needs to get serious by considering the impact this development will have on the Lynn neighborhood just below it.

Neither the developers nor the city is giving consideration to the worries – whether real or imagined – of the Lynn neighborhood residents fearing flooding, annoyed by the thought of increased traffic and driven into fits of despair that the value of their homes will decline further.

In the meantime, the developers have moved forward with their project and officials in Salem, eyeing the city’s acquiescence, are doing what any other municipality would do – that is – to ignore the shouting and to move on with the development.

We wonder and we ask – where is the Lynn mayor?

For God’s sake, she lives I the neighborhood that is affected.

Why has she not acted boldly and affirmatively to have this development be a victory not only for Salem but also for Lynn?

We have heard the mayor gave her conditional OK to the Salem mayor that she wouldn’t intervene with a project of this importance.

What is that all about?

We know the mayor of Salem. You can bet your bottom dollar if the deal was reversed and it was Salem residents being impacted that Kim Driscoll would be all over this for her constituents and that she’d be the first to sue if she didn’t get her fair share out of this development for Salem.

Lynn is looking for its fair share.

This means Lynn wants what must be done to insure proper drainage is done; that the environment is paid attention to instead of being destroyed; and that traffic mitigation of an extraordinary kind must be provided for.

Why would Lynn residents be in favor of a development that benefits Salem at Lynn’s expense?

Because Lynn residents aren’t idiots.

They are presently being treated like idiots – and the absence of the mayor in this critical fight is made all the worse by the posturings of others on the Salem side who would tell us not to worry, everything is going to be fine and that traffic will be even lighter when the new stores are on line.

We urge the neighborhood to hire a lawyer and to urge Mayor Flanagan Kennedy to come out of hiding and to demand that the mayor of Salem do the right thing – and to look her straight in the eye and say: ”This isn’t going to happen unless our concerns are met.”

The mayor of Salem is a lawyer. The mayor of Lynn is a lawyer.

They will certainly understand one another when – and if – they talk.

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