2010-02-04 / Letters to the Editor

Time for a full view of Ft. Getty

I believe the consideration of turbines at Ft. Getty prompts a re-think for the property as a whole.

Ft. Getty is the only public open space owned by the town and is a potential jewel for the residents of the island. It has wonderful views, great trails, has access to the less-busy west passage and is easy to imagine as a hub for fishermen, kayakers, sailors, walkers (and their dogs), birders, picnickers, kids, adults and families all to enjoy year round.

Today, it consists of a dilapidated dock, dilapidated boat ramp, old military installations that are dilapidated to the point of being dangerous, run-down public rest rooms and an events barn in need of care. Through the late fall, winter and early spring, the park is filled with islanders walking, a great community of dog owners and some fishermen using the ramp. The rest of the year, it is largely a trailer park in need of signifi cant upgrades, a campsite and a park for boat trailers, and access to islanders is essentially denied.

There have been plans over the years to improve the docks for transient boaters, build a sailing facility and improve the pavilion for weddings and events. The master plan sought to strike a balance between the seasonal residents and the residents of the island to create access all year round.

While a great deal of thought went into the plan, it should now be updated to consider not only whether a wind turbine could be integrated into the scheme, but also to take a holistic view of all the potential recreational uses of the property. As part of a new plan, the survey should be completed so that all residents have their say in guiding the plans. The responsible stewardship of Ft. Getty will benefi t all the residents of Jamestown and care for this unique asset for generations to come.

For the record, I live on Ft. Getty Road, was not involved in the master plan, and am not opposed to a turbine, nor the trailers, nor a sailing center. But I do believe it is time to take a comprehensive view of this important public space.
Aidan Petrie

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