The movie Field of Dreams did the city of Augusta a disservice. The phrase “If you build it, they will come” seems to have lingered all these years with our local leaders.
Unfortunately, the phrase they should keep in mind is: If you build it, you must maintain it.
The downtown area seems to have two persistent problems: 1) lack of security, and 2) lack of parking spaces. You can now add to that a lack of maintenance.
It seems like only yesterday our leaders were taking a walking tour of Riverwalk to observe firsthand the need for maintenance.
Now I read where some of the same leaders are presenting a new concept for downtown – a veranda built over some of the parking areas.
Given that Augusta is in a constant struggle to operate and maintain everything from the James Brown Arena to the Patch to the Aquatic Center, and now to the Riverwalk – not to mention such previous failures as the Golf and Gardens – the last thing this community needs is to build a veranda over the middle of Broad Street.
Let’s not be blinded by the “free money” available through the extra 1 percent tax to create one more project that we can’t afford to maintain. This concept will provide no improvement to the two previously mentioned persistent problems, and will only add to the list of projects needing maintenance.