Your thoughts on enhancing Main Street

To the Editor,
Here’s a bit of verse I wrote about ten years or so ago,  With the upcoming enhancement and change in the appearance of Main St., I thought it might be appropriate.

Ageless Grand Bend
Every weekend, rain or shine,
People flock in cars so fine,
Lining up with engines running,
Hoping soon they’ll all be sunning
On our beaches, vast and sandy,
Cheek by jowl, and often randy!
Red and burning, sleek with lotion,
Coolers full of “magic potion”.
Later on they cruise our Main Drag,
Check the shops, the games, then brag
How until six their party ran.
(Sleeping an hour in an old sedan!)
On the sidewalks, road and front lawn
Cups and plates and forks get thrown down
Flow’rs get torn and tossed around,
Dying on the grungy ground!
Miraculously, The Bend maintains
It’s own mystique. And see those stains?
Those blots you walk on everywhere?
Your Grandpa dropped his bubblegum there!
Oh! Oh! New plans will pave it over.
Century-old stains go undercover.
These paving stones – a fresh new page
How will they fare in this bold new age?
(The last four lines were added today.)
Marie Strapp (via email)

To the Editor,
I, too, attended the library room meeting a few Thursdays ago to see the plans that are going forward. It was clear political types and designers were going through the required motions of ‘public input’ and ‘public participation’ to get on with it as soon as they can to capture the much revered infrastructure/stimulus money from other levels of government.
The first $2.5 million comes from the provincial and federal tax base (Editor’s note: prior reports stated the total cost was $2.6 million, but the Lambton Shores municipal website now says that is the amount of funding received); the tremendous funding balance will come from our municipal tax base. It’s very much a Larry the Cable Guy program: Git R Done now or lose the lion’s share of this found cash.
As I type this letter, I am sitting in Grand Bend’s most popular meeting place (Tim Hortons). Wouldn’t it have been creative to have exposed these plans to the people over the last three months by using some wall space?
We might have then seen the green spaces and proposed trees, etc., and been able to compare the green spaces drawn on the beach enhancement sketches and ask if the green would be the same brown spaces of excessive mulch ground cover employed in that glorious job. One might have asked with the reduced parking at the beach whether we can really afford another “just 20 parking space loss” on Main Street?
Like any good plastic surgery clinic, the town has the deposit so let’s get on with the face lift. And as I head next door for breakfast at a business far from the pending minor distraction this enhancement work will be, I think about a good omelette: if they break some eggs, let’s hope we don’t end up with scrambled eggs when served up by reopening in June 2010.
Robert Webb (via email)
(see for draft proposal)