11/18/06 — Invest in history: Neighborhood deterioration cannot be tolerated

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Invest in history: Neighborhood deterioration cannot be tolerated

History just might be an untapped market for Wayne County — if, that is, someone is ready to get tough about protecting the integrity of downtown Goldsboro’s historic neighborhoods.

The number of potentially beautiful downtown homes is staggering. Just drive around some of the streets and you will see that there is history in the making right here.

And some investors have already taken up the mantle, buying some of the most interesting houses and starting major renovations to restore them to their original glory.

So, that, along with the recent news about the Paramount reconstruction, a new community building in the making and the possibility of a beautiful new park at Stoney Creek, brings a thought.

Perhaps there might be a whole lot more to market in Goldsboro and Wayne County than some people had otherwise thought.

A quaint, historic downtown with places to shop, eat and stay, just might catch the attention of new investors and new residents.

But to make that work, someone has to come up with a few new rules.

Some of the most beautiful areas of Goldsboro are right up against some of the worst.

Getting people to invest in the city’s future will require officials to get tougher on those who think they can maintain rundown rental properties or residences with impunity.

That means someone is going to have to set strict rules, issue the citations and be aggressive about demanding action — no matter what.

Creating a downtown history tour, and coupling it with some of the other historical attractions around the area, could create a positive cash flow for the city and county with increased tourism and interest in economic development here.

From that start, we can then focus on other additions for the county, like a civic center.

And that will benefit everyone.

Cleaning up some of downtown neighborhoods will not be easy. There are plenty of people who want things to stay exactly as they are. But with a united front and the continued support of those who want to make this community better, there is a future for downtown Goldsboro. All we have to do is demand it — and be willing to invest the time and money into setting the stage and enforcing the rules.

Cleaning up the rundown properties is the first order of business.

Published in Editorials on November 18, 2006 11:24 PM