Village trustees and the selectboard have considered the generous amount of money offered by federal and state governments for brownfields cleanup and the potential for redevelopment in Johnson, so they have dusted off the village-sponsored brownfields study of a few years back that addressed the talc area, Manchester Mill and Railroad Street.
The brownfields proximity to the rail trail and the potential for recreation development is an advantage. The resulting vision of that study included an enormous expenditure that included housing, recreation, arts, a welcome center, a park, snack bar, more river access, a brewery and relocation of the food shelf and both the town and village garages to unknown destinations.
You may remember its being on display at Tuesday Night Live that summer. The three components of the plan can be found on the town’s website under documents.
The Lamoille County Planning Commission is thinking about creating a brownfields advisory board that would advise about brownfields expenditures.
Doug Molde, who was on the previous study board, would like to be a part of the new one if the town and village are serious about figuring out what they want to do about redevelopment. He feels that “if the town and village want to do an economic development project, we need to get started with community input and planning on what we might want to do with what is currently the food shelf building.”
Available monies are generally given to shovel-ready projects, so it’s time to form a plan and eventually get in line for money for a first phase. Community involvement will be needed. First, selectboard members and trustees will read the study results and discuss it.
Over at the skatepark, a security camera will be installed. Ongoing support at the park is provided by Sgt. Watson of the Lamoille County Sheriff’s Department, who helps the community and park work together. He reminds us that reporting any suspicious behavior at the park to them is critical.
The Tuesday Night Live committee is looking forward to next year already, with discussions around changing the trash procedure, considering adding a “good old American rock and roll” band, changing the voucher system, getting the word out that folks should bring their own plates and cutlery with them to cut down on trash, creating a system of allowing nonprofits to fundraise, possibly increasing vendor fees and fundraising to pay bands, and having an open mic night.
This thought went across their minds for more storage: “Howard Romero said the Tuesday Night Live committee, the skating rink and the bread oven could all use a shared shed on Legion Field. He doesn’t know where we would find the space for it. If we could take a chunk out of the bank behind the bandstand or playground and put it there, that would be ideal. He and Tim Mikovitz think they could build a shed on the side and back of the bandstand that would meet needs,” according to recent meeting minutes.
Thanks go to Peter Hammond for his offer to help take down the sponsor signs from the Legion Field.
Saturday is National Feral Cats Day. Anyone wishing to get involved with helping them can find all the info they need at alleycat.com.
— Sue Lovering, 635-8315